LETTERS

Neighborhoods succumb to airport expansion

Posted

To the Editor:

As the expansion of TF Green Airport progresses, neighborhoods in Greenwood are disappearing. In a subculture of Greenwood known as The Birches, over 60 homes are being acquired in order to accommodate this project. With an ample number of homes, a walking path, and ball fields, this truly was a neighborhood. Now the area has become almost unrecognizable. With each blink of an eye another home or tree is gone, while dumpsters and bulldozers have become a familiar part of the landscape. Where the sounds of life were once abundant, only the distant hum of traffic and construction fill the void.

For some a neighborhood is a place to raise a family, but for others the neighborhood is the family. It’s a community of people who look out for each other. The kind who watch out for you when you’re ill, or look after your home when you go away. They take in your recyclables, and your driveway is mysteriously cleared of snow when you come home. You can call them any time of day or night with an emergency. This is more than a neighborhood, it’s an infrastructure, and the loss of such for some, can be profound. As each member leaves, the grief is real and painful. Once living in a joyous, cohesive colony, now some reside in isolation – feeling like a lonesome wolf without its pack, waiting for their turn to go.

While relocation will inevitably take place, and compensation should be fair, don’t underestimate the toll this move may take on some. In addition to the laborious task of physically moving, forming new bonds will take time.

I know that life consists of movement, and to not accept change is to not invite progress. My commentary is to merely highlight the emotional impact these changes can have. So when you pass through this area and notice that the houses once there have disappeared, know that there is so much more missing. It’s the pulse of a community that is gone.

Tammie Dickerman

Warwick

Comments

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Thecaptain

Tammie,

Your comments are unfortunately a difficult reality. All this hardship over an antiquated mathematical formula of thrust vs weight of a 737-300 and the notion of "speculation" that business will follow. You have to understand that these decisions were made by elected officials who had some personal gain in the matter. In the case of our mayor, he has sold out the residents of this city so many times that it is impossible to keep track of. If you are not aware of the numbers, since the major airport expansion of 2008, ( of which I was the structural inspector of record) flights are down 31%. This runway expansion project was based upon the take off distance of aircraft that no longer use the engines that were used in the formula to determine take off distance, (thrust vs weight) As a licensed pilot I have a bit of knowledge on the subject.

The neighborhood and its generations of families that were raised there, have been displaced by a mayor and and a political machine that sold us all out for the opportunity of personal gain somewhere in the future. Sad but true.

Tuesday, July 11
richardcorrente

When Rob Cote, (AKA "Thecaptain") is right, he's right, and he's spot on when it comes to this investment vs. return-on-investment regarding the airport expansion. He accurately reported that "flights are down 31%" and that the mayor "sold us out". That's why I have campaigned strongly for the last several years that, as Mayor, I will "renegotiate the airport agreement". Warwick taxpayers are paying higher taxes, in part, because the mayor gave away the tax revenue of over one hundred houses and all Warwick taxpayers received was air pollution, water pollution, noise pollution and soil pollution. My critics complained that "You can't renegotiate it! It's a done deal!" But we all know better. Anything can be renegotiated, can't it? Sure it can! As a matter of fact our new State Representative Camille Vella-Wilkenson did just that. She introduced legislation that will have the R.I. Airport Authority pay an additional one million dollars a year as a PILOT (payment-in-lieu-of-taxes). What a simple solution! Why didn't I think of that? Why didn't my critics? I guess Camille Vella-Wilkenson is a whole lot smarter than we all are.

She must be.

WAY-TO-GO-CAMILLE-VELLA-WILKENSON!!

Happy Summer Camille and husband Ken.

Happy Summer everyone.

Rick Corrente

The Taxpayers Mayor

Tuesday, July 11
davebarry109

The people who sold out Warwick were the businessmen and mayor back in the '70s. They saw more hotels, more rental cars, more restaurant use....in short, more business. The shortsightedness was what would happen to the city itself. Homes would have to be gobbled up to accomodate the inevitable expansion. (Airports usually don't grow smaller).

Once the decision was made to keep the airport in Warwick rather than move it to Quonset, the city was irrevocably changed. If you bought your home in the last 30 years, you have nothing to complain about. If beyond that, maybe. But make no mistake. It was the mayor and council and businessmen of the time who did this. It all comes down to profit, greed, money, at the expense of the quality of life.

Tuesday, July 11
CrickeeRaven

For readers who value honesty, here is a corrected version of the fake "mayor's" prior comment:

- "I have campaigned strongly for the last several years..." -- Two years is not "several," and he lost. His campaign formally ended on November 8, 2016, so any "campaign" he mentions is a figment of his imagination.

- "My critics complained..." -- And he had no answer except whining about it and repeating the talking points that led to his failure as a candidate.

- "...our new State Representative Camille Vella-Wilkenson did just that..." -- The bill did not pass out of committee; nothing happened. He should also learn to spell her name: Vella-WilKINson. [Just like he finally learned to spell "Fourth of July" instead of the fake holiday he invented, "Forth-of-July."]

- "Why didn't I think of that?" -- Probably because, instead of offering new ideas, the fake "mayor" simply repeated his faulty assertions about the potential for renegotiating the airport contract. The state bill in question is not a renegotiation of the airport contract.

- "The Taxpayers Mayor" -- This is a fake title invented by the losing candidate that he claims despite a 65-35% loss in the 2016 election, and that he claims is proof that he "serves" the people of Warwick.

He will certainly continue to embarrass himself with his next comments.

Tuesday, July 11
richardcorrente

Dear Davebarry109,

I don't always agree with you but in this case I find you to be completely accurate. This airport cost-factor started long before Mayor Avedisian took office. However the latest moves, the ones he did cause, are the ones that I believe could have been much less costly to the taxpayers. Furthermore, the airport can still do volumes more than they are presently doing to be better neighbors. For one thing, they could complete the sound-reducing improvements they agreed to give to the homeowners on the perimeter of the expansion. On one street, Elberta Street, the first half of the houses received about $30,000 each and as they were approaching the second half of homes that they previously agreed to renovate (in writing!) they conveniently "ran out of money". Those homes got nothing. They also agreed to plant trees along an area of the new runway that they also conveniently "ran out of money" on. Those neighbors have met with me as well as the ones on Elberta. I WILL renegotiate the Airport Agreement. I believe they want to be a better neighbor, but you're right, The imbalance started decades ago and "Airports usually don't grow smaller".

Wise words.

Happy Summer Dave.

Happy Summer everyone.

Rick Corrente

The Taxpayers Mayor

Wednesday, July 12
Justanidiot

The sad day was when route 95 destroyed what as a once thriving city. there was no need to rend warwick in two with an asphalt wall and barrier. get it moved mr taxpayers mayer. it is why we voted for you. just because it exisits doesn't mean it has to stay. sad

Wednesday, July 12
richardcorrente

Dear Justanidiot,

WOW you're old. I remember coming down Rt. 1, before we had Rt. 95 in the 50's. If you can remember it too, then you're as old or older than I am. I'm 65.

You are right. Rt. 95 took a lot of traffic away from Warwick and we lost business as a result but it also took away the smog and accidents that Post Rd. used to get. I think it has more good than bad but we really need more businesses. My idea to attract them is to offer tax rebates for new businesses coming into Warwick, similar to my tax rebates to attract new home buyers. If you have an idea on the subject I would love to hear it. You have wisdom.

Happy Summer Justanidiot.

Happy Summer everyone.

Rick Corrente

The Taxpayers Mayor

Thursday, July 13