We have never written a letter to the editor before, but when we read the letters that express a negative view of the proposed George Hotel for our waterfront, we felt we had to speak up. It seems to us that the naysayers are influenced more by fear of change than consideration of opportunities for our community.
We read some thoughts that make our heads spin. For instance, what does the Northern Gateway project have to do with this issue? That sounds like fear-mongering to me.
The writer concerned with a “cost to taxpayers” is missing the point that having a successful new businesses paying additional taxes adds to our tax base. That doesn’t cost us — it supports us.
The other “do nothing to protect our uniqueness” ideas are naïve at best and just plain foolish. Any improvement to our waterfront that cleans up, encourages tourism and supports local businesses by bringing people to stay in the area adds to our uniqueness, not detracts. The “don’t change” attitude means stagnation and further decline. We have seen that attitude create decline since we have been here. There were many other successful businesses in Lower Gibsons when we first came to the Coast 14 years ago — for instance, we had a grocery store, drugstore and bank in the village. No longer. That is decline. It is time to reverse the trend by embracing investment, innovation and improvement.
We support Klaus Fuerniss and this project wholeheartedly. His willingness to risk and invest millions of dollars in our community is impressive.
We believe that the building of and operation of this project will be a major economic driver for the community for years to come.
George and Nicky Grafton, Gibsons