Letter to the Editor

Bigelow endorses road improvements

Tue, 07/12/2016 - 9:45am

Dear Editor:

Bigelow Laboratory is pleased to be a contributing member in the Boothbay community. Over the past few years, we have moved from McKown Point to our new purpose-built campus in East Boothbay. A steadily growing workforce, currently 85 permanent employees, has accompanied this move. In addition, we have many visitors, suppliers, maintenance technicians, and currently, construction workers, coming to the campus. Nearly all this activity travels on Route 27 and through the new developments taking place at the entrance to our town.

We recognize fully that the substantial growth and development that is taking place in the Boothbay region over the past few years is uncomfortable for some, and enthusiastically supported by others. Indeed, at a recent quarterly staff meeting at the Laboratory, we discussed the proposed road developments and our own staff demonstrated a very representative spectrum of views that is currently being aired in the community. I do, however, think that each of the major employers on the peninsula has a role in, and valuable contribution to make to, this discussion as we seek both to provide the very best working experience for our staff and to attract new talent to the region to continue to sustain and grow our organizations.

Safe and efficient transport to Bigelow Laboratory is as important as the quality and reliability of utilities used to conduct our research onsite at the Laboratory. With essentially only one route for people, power, and water traveling to East Boothbay, any impacts along this route are immediately felt. Improving the road layout, pedestrian paths, and bicycle access to our town is vital.

As director at Bigelow Laboratory, I have the privilege of leading a fantastic group of people and helping to contribute to the vibrancy and reputation of our region. By endorsing improvements to our road access that bring both safety and aesthetic qualities to our town, I hope that collectively we will ensure Boothbay’s success for the future, and respect for all the individuals and institutions that will help make it so.

Graham Shimmield, executive director and president

Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences