If we build it, they will come

Editor:

The Gila County Board of Supervisors proposes $5.1 million for improving sheriff, courts, health department buildings in Payson and over $4 million for Globe. Great! But how about making Payson a place for families to enjoy and a draw for tourists so we can support all these wonderful improvements?

We have a ghost town of deserted buildings because businesses don’t survive here.

Our Zane Grey American Cowboy frontier legacy has been allowed to die. People used to come from all over the world for a taste of the Old West. Main Street development has been talked about for years. It’s way past time to create a community center. We need a theater with local talent. We don’t need to go out of town to find artists and performers. How about old Zane Grey silent movies, country western plays and melodramas?

Bring back our old time mercantile celebrating our (local) artists and writers like Jinx Pyle, Peter Aleshire and our talented country cookbook writers.

Have a place to teach Native American arts, ceramics, jewelry making and western arts like leather crafting. We could really attract those city slickers with western motif conference rooms.

Our children need a place to find leadership and real role models. How about a Main Street house where caring adults welcome children with activities, guidance and love?

We have so many talented, generous and compassionate people here in Rim Country. Make Main Street a community center/field of dreams. If we build it, they will come!

Kathleen Kelly, Payson

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(1) comment

Don Evans

Take a look at the "Container Shopping Center" in North Las Vegas. The area was a delapidated blight, crime and drug ridden. Some people with vision bought several blocks of land, dozed it down, and built the Container Park/Mall. Large shipping steel containers, stacked, painted, refurbished into shops. An entertainment and park in the center. If you read up on it's history the cost was half of what a stick built facility would be. It fostered more private investment in stores and restaurants. Now it's a major destination for visitors. If you have to have a western theme and building facade, it could be easily accomplished with these huge containers. Main street will never be a attraction/destination/ local gathering place without a similar commitment of such a venue.

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