I was going to add a photo, but not much to show. Yesterday, I went to the Fairgrounds Mall and it felt like walking through a ghost town. I counted sixteen empty stores, soon to be joined by one of the “anchor stores” JC Penny. There were more empty stores than people walking inside. Next door, the Fairgrounds Farmers Market parking lot was full, as it usually is when opened. So, I guess the word is: if you build something people need and want, they may show up.
Meanwhile, I eagerly await the results of a study being down by Muhlenberg Township about economic development, and why businesses are leaving. Maybe that money could better have been spent luring a new business here that people might actually want or, better providing long term, low interest loans to small businesses to relocate in the mall. To make things more interesting, the township is locating to a building across the street from the mall. Maybe they could have spent less money and had more money if they had moved all their offices to the Fairgrounds Mall, or, better yet, not moved at all but added space in their current facility which is easily accessible with much parking.
I guess it could be worse. The township could not sweep the streets before he annual Temple Halloween Parade or even cancel the parade itself. Or, better, they could have gotten a state grant to see why people show up for the parade and then cancelled it.
I have worked for city and county governments in my distant past, and recognize we need effective government to provide needed public services. But what’s happening around these parts gives me pause to wonder.
Oh, by the way, how many of the top officials who make these decisions actually live in Muhlenberg Township? Just asking.