Some thoughts on shoplifting, future use of the tar ponds and road construction delays

Showing below is the segment of Jackson's column dealing with the Tar Ponds
Cape Breton Post
Column by Fred Jackson
Sat., July 25, 2009

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The Tar Ponds Community Liaison Committee is holding planning sessions on options for the future use of the site, and committee members are being asked to bring input from the groups that they represent. As a Rotarian, I was asked to rank, in order, the preference the following possible future uses of the site which are listed alphabetically – agricultural; alternative energy – wind turbines, solar panels; campground/RV’s; commercial/industrial; educational institutions; golf course; historical/museums; recreational/parks, trials (other than a golf course); residential and other.

About eight years ago I commented on the future site of the tar ponds. At that time, I took a line from the ‘Field of Dreams’ movie – ‘If you build it he will come!’ That's vision at its best. You are standing in the middle of the former coke ovens site and you hear the voice for the first time: ‘If you build it, he will come.’

You look around but you don't see anybody. The voice speaks again, this time in a soft, confident tone. Suddenly you are granted a vision of an 18-hole golf course and a beautiful four-lane highway in the north end of Sydney.

Field of Dreams is a film about a young couple who run a family farm in Iowa. They enjoy sitting on the porch and listening to the grass grow. The man is granted a vision of a baseball diamond, right there in his cornfield. If he builds it, the voice seems to promise, Joe Jackson will come to play on it – Shoeless Joe, who was a member of the infamous 1919 Black Sox team whose gambling payoff scandal blackened the eye of baseball. Shoeless Joe protested until the day he died that he had played the best he could and didn't try to throw games.

There’s no question that people are tired of talking about the tar ponds and want progress. It appears the tar ponds committee is moving in the right direction and a combination of commercial, recreational and alternative energy projects would enhance the area and our economy.

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