Gloucester and other Cape Ann communities made a fair amount of economic progress in 2012, from the City Council’s backing of hotel overlay zone to facilitate the Beauport Gloucester hotel project to the construction of Gloucester’s HarborWalk and Essex’s revitalization out of the Route 133 construction project.
But, as city and other town officials line up their resolutions for 2013, there are two golden opportunities that simply can no longer remain stalled. That’s Gloucester’s failed pursuit of a developer for its $1.5 million taxpayer-owned I-4, C-2 site, and Rockport’s long-standing wrangling over the Cape Ann Tool Company property.
The 2012 acquisition by Yankee Clipper Inn operator Michael J. Rauseo offers hope that, after decades of decay into perhaps Cape Ann’s most offensive eyesore, the old Tool Company property will be revitalized. Yet town officials must see what they can do to facilitate Rauseo’s plans and accelerate the clearing of the site. In Gloucester, Mayor Carolyn Kirk and other city officials must re-examine their and the state’s development mandates for I-4, C-2 and explore how to move development of this waterfront property forward.
Let’s hope these two sites, rather than remaining dormant, become two economic success stories in the new year.