Sunday Night: Labor pains

By MaryHelen Swanson, editor

To say the least, getting around in Rush City and North Branch this summer has been a pain.

I might compare it to childbirth, because some people have been greatly inconvenienced, some stores have lost business, and some people’s cars have taken a beating on the unfinished avenues. I’d say those were labor pains.

When it’s all over there will be a solid road system that should last for many years and be greatly appreciated and admired by all who live here and all who pass through our towns.

People have moaned and groaned about the detours, the rough roads by their homes, and difficulty getting to and from local businesses.

And I did the same thing for four years as County Road 7 was being redone (especially as the starting point going west for two years and then going east for another two years was pretty much right at my driveway). And during those years, some people’s vehicles were severely damaged. Many were greatly inconvenienced, having to add miles and miles to their travel. One day I even came home from work to find my driveway four feet in the air (I live on a hill).

But I ask you, how else would the roads and the infrastructure beneath them get repaired? There are no road fairies that come only in the night to work on the projects and miraculously disappear in daylight with no interruption of service.

So we are inconvenienced. And like bearing a child, which I would hardly call an inconvenience (personal perspective times five) all the discomfort is worth it.

And as soon as the nice, new streets are complete with that final layer of asphalt, and lined with smooth curbs and gutters where rain water flows swiftly to the sewers, and the towns are spruced up with new light poles and all, and we don’t have to dig up the streets all the time to repair broken water mains, I think folks will forget all the anguish and love the baby… er final outcome.

And, as we have already been seeing a slight uptick in the local economy, with a number of new businesses and even some new buildings in both NB and RC, imagine how much more attractive our communities will be to prospective companies who would like to locate or re-locate in one of our towns.

Is it worth it then to have suffered the labor of street improvement?

Labor? From my perspective, it’s been worth it every time.

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