The appearance of workers on the scene of the former Cape Ann Tool Company in Rockport these last two weeks has certainly been a welcome sight.
In fact, that would have been the case, almost regardless of what those workers were doing.
But the fact that the work now being carried out is geared toward razing much of what has long been perhaps Cape Ann’s worst eyesore, while rehabbing the rest of the property bodes well for the future of the that Pigeon Cove neighborhood. And the evolving plan now being advanced by new site owner Michael Rauseo bodes well for the town and its residents as well.
From a strictly aesthetic standpoint, any clearing of this site is obviously welcome news for neighbors. As Pigeon Cove resident Marie Larsen noted, the demolition of this clear safety hazard and standing town liability threat has been something for which neighbors have been waiting 28 years — and that’s understandable.
But while breathing sighs of relief that this site is finally being cleaned up, let’s also not lose track of what should be in its future; a complex of homes and small retail parcels whose construction will still allow neighbors and passing motorists a view of the ocean, and amenities that will include 31 parking spots, three boat slips — and, perhaps the most underrated element, a water taxi that will transport people from Pigeon Cove to downtown Rockport and back.
Indeed, for all the talk over all the years aimed at finding solutions to Rockport’s downtown parking problems, the idea of utilizing what amounts to a park-and-ride water taxi between Pigeon Cove may be the most practical, partial solution to surface in some time.
Let’s hope this work not only continues in a timely fashion, but perhaps even accelerates.
The clearing of this property and the construction of Rauseo’s new vision fort this revitalized site can’t come soon enough.