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Posted: November 2, 2008 5:00 a.m.

Losing our small town charm

Letter to the editor

Dear Editor: As a relatively new resident of Newton County (2 years) I would like to share my view on the new hotel and convention center project.
 I agree that Covington may be ready for a little more tourism and business growth, but not to the detriment of losing that “small town” charm that has been so hastily ruined across America. Covington has numerous vacant shopping areas and abandoned “Big Box” retailer buildings having superior visibilty, highway access and room for parking.
 Why build new buildings in postage stamp size areas creating certain uncontrollable traffic and parking problems in the area of the square. I moved here from Gwinnett and personally witnessed the ruin of Lilburn, Snellville and Grayson areas and the horrid traffic and crime problems it created. Growth is necessary to survive but not at the expense of long time residents and businesses that have populated Covington and the square for generations.
 I realize one voice will not stop this project, but I ask that you seek the opinion of people that will not prosper from these “pork barrel” projects before moving forward on this albatross of an undertaking. This project will be a certain disaster and cause years of heartache and needless financial burden for the citizens of Covington and the surrounding area and comes at a time when the economy is suffering.
 Build if you must, but let’s retain the charm the residents of Covington and its visitors have come to enjoy and come home to each afternoon after fighting the commute to and from work outside the area and not force them to endure the same here at home.
 We allegedly welcomed the new Super Wal-Mart to our community; if they truly wish to be “part of the community” they build in, then let them contribute one of their abandoned eyesores for such projects.

Tim Huffstickler
Covington

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