If you pay much attention when you’re driving around town lately (and I really hope that you do — pay attention, that is) you can’t help but admit we’ve seen some “change” as of late.
And, contrary to the political connotations that word will forever carry with it now, that “change” we’re seeing is good.
First and foremost — let’s all pick a time and “kiss the pavement” on Seventh Avenue to celebrate its return to “normal” status.
Even without the turn lane everybody always gripes about, it is good to be able to slide through town without having to dodge signs and endure detours and long backups from left-turns.
And with the end of that nearly five year inconvenience, we’re seeing some other projects kick into gear along the highway through town.
That’s more “good change” to celebrate.
It’s possible you may have shed a tear over the demise of the Longbranch at 18th and Seventh Avenue — and the adjoining building that in recent years served as an insurance agency — but what we’ll have to replace it will be an improvement in the landscape. I’m all for embracing our past history, but the Longbranch building with it’s “half standing/half gone” looks did nothing for the appearance of our town to the causal traveler or long-term resident.
Going forward, perhaps our leaders can figure out a way to deal with such structures in highly visible locations without letting them languish like that for decades.
How about it, Mr. Mayor?
Back to our positive “changes” — we’re also seeing the plan to develop the 26th Street and Seventh Avenue property that’s stood vacant and half dug-up for the last couple of years. It will be the home of a new and improved Sonic Drive-In. Yes, that will create a vacancy at the old site, but other towns have gotten somewhat creative in their use of the old Sonic properties.
I know — perhaps another courthouse annex?
Let’s put Russell Hudson in a pair of roller skates and give him a workout at tax time with a drive-up (instead of a drive-through) tax office.
And travel a little farther west on Seventh Avenue and you’ll see that the 45th Street “corridor” has seen some attention as of late. The old county barn building is all but gone now (it may be completely gone by the time you read this) and there has been some very heavy-duty “mesquite harvesting” on some of that property between the State Home and Seventh Avenue along 45th Street. Don’t know what’s going to become of that, but at least there is an effort to do something.
I’m sometimes told I’m a “glass is half-empty” kinda guy. I guess I can’t argue with that. “Healthy skepticism” is what our training teaches us.
But I will say that it looks like to this old, cranky, “half-empty glass” reporter that something good is happening around town.
And that does represent “change” from what’s been the status quo here of late.
So why don’t you join me in topping off that “half-empty glass” of unsweet tea and offer a toast “to the future” and all it holds in store for our little town.
“Here’s to ‘change’ — now, and in 2016 too.”
Now if that’s not optimism for you ...
Bob Belcher is Managing Editor of the Corsicana Daily Sun. His column appears on Saturdays. He may be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org