Mount Vernon News
 
 
This is what remained of the kitchen of a dilapidated vacant home acquired by the Foundation Park Conservancy as part of a neighborhood improvement project. Demolition of a dozen run-down structures in the Columbus Road area, including commercial establishments, single-family homes and an apartment building, began in December. Most parcels will eventually be re-sold with deed restrictions.
This is what remained of the kitchen of a dilapidated vacant home acquired by the Foundation Park Conservancy as part of a neighborhood improvement project. Demolition of a dozen run-down structures in the Columbus Road area, including commercial establishments, single-family homes and an apartment building, began in December. Most parcels will eventually be re-sold with deed restrictions. (Photo by Virgil Shipley) View Image

By Mount Vernon News
January 2, 2014 10:44 am EST

 

MOUNT VERNON — Mike Fahling has an up-close view of Ariel-Foundation Park, and mixed emotions to go along with it.

A glance across Pittsburgh Avenue from Fahling’s front yard affords a view of a new retaining wall fronted by young conifers that flank and one day will rise above an imposing park entrance. Earth moving in the background will create elevated vantage points overlooking the park. Just out of view are lakes Fahling appreciates as a fisherman, and to the east are ruins of the historic Coxey Building and PPG Plant.

Fahling sees positives in the ambitious park project, but also takes some offense because as one of the park’s closest neighbors he feels invisible.

“My resentment is because of lack of input and what I see as bully tactics,” Fahling said. “In general, I’m glad the old plant is coming down. Having viable use for the property is good. But there’s a great deal of egocentricity on the part of people behind the park. When Waste Management came into our neighborhood we were invited to a meeting to ask questions and voice concerns. That never happened with the park.”

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