Regarding the 4th Street property in Swanton, here is my two cents. Due to COVID I don’t attend public meetings. But I wanted my voice heard. I encourage the Selectboard not to sell the property for apartments. This property could be pivotal to Swanton’s future. The Lamoille Valley Rail Trail offers us a golden opportunity. At 93 miles, being one of the longest rail trails in New England, can put Swanton on the map. The LVRT has already positively impacted other communities. After retiring, I worked for Vermont’s Welcome Center in Alburgh and also one of the Information Centers. People came in all the time looking for walking or bike paths. Some were new residents, vacationers, or outdoor enthusiasts. In that we will be the beginning or end of the trail, people will be coming off the trail looking for food, drinks, or something else to do. In the we are also near Lake Champlain and the Missisquoi National wildlife Refuge, we can promote a recreation identity for our community/ For years Swanton has been looking for an identity it can promote. This would potentially bring significant business to our local merchants and draw or keep younger people. COVID showed a return of strong interest in healthy outside activities. This property can promote Swanton. There could be an information kiosk, picnic tables, pavilion, food truck etc. The key is that it could have a real positive snowball effect for the community, its people, and its merchants. Let’s take advantage of this opportunity to look toward the future of long term economic and enhancement potential rather than an immediate cash out. Please do not sell at this pivotal time.

Karen Drennen


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