We’ve seen the signs urging us to “Save Main Street” in Cumberland by voting no on June 9. Instead I urge you to vote yes. This issue is about preserving one of the few remaining small business locations on this stretch of road. If we don’t keep the businesses we have, Main Street could become only a highway funneling traffic from Pownal, Durham and North Yarmouth to Falmouth and Portland.
Cumberland Center used to have many more businesses. Recently we’ve seen 12 new housing units on Main Street and have lost one business. Some would have you think that we’re heading for big commercial development, but we’re not; we’re going the other way. All-residential neighborhoods are fine for side streets, but it’s the mix of houses and small-impact businesses that make a vital town center.
There’s been a business at the corner of Main Street and Farwell for as long as most people can remember. It was nice having a flower shop there and I miss it. The proposed credit union stands to be a quiet business, it’s willing to make improvements to the intersection at its own expense, and it’s interested in building itself into a contributing part of the community that will pay taxes.
Main Street isn’t just my neighborhood; it belongs to the entire community. Without some small businesses, there would be no Center in Cumberland Center. Without amenities to walk to, there would be no advantage to living on Main Street.
Save Main Street, yes. But do it by voting yes.