Keep Sports Complex Out

What a strange and distressing time in the history of this beautiful little spit of land we call Sandwich. On one hand we have the 375 Committee, which has put in countless hours of dedicated work and planning to showcase and remind us of our 375 years of history in this quintessential Cape Cod town. Amazingly, at the very same time, and diametrically opposed, we have those who want to turn Sandwich into the “premier sports destination in New England” by building huge stadiums and chain hotels?

Why are we fortunate enough to live in this beautiful, bucolic and historically important town? Because the many generations before us were good stewards of this land. There are other ways to develop the golden triangle which will be of greater benefit to all the people and not change the character of the town forever. This behemoth project does not belong in Sandwich.  

I would guess that the people of Freeport, Maine, thinking they were doing something good by bringing in L.L. Bean may well have been horrified when subsequently one of their beautiful colonial homes was turned into a McDonald’s. I seriously doubt that was part of the original plan. If we open the door to this kind of “city-like blight,” how long will it be before one of our colonial homes sprouts a pair of golden arches? This can’t happen, you say, because the plan is to build these things in the golden triangle—not the historic district. I wonder if it is still possible to find the historic district in Freeport? 

Do we really think we are going to be the “premier sports capital of New England” and not have all the honkytonk and flotsam that surrounds a huge sports complex? Are we naive enough to believe that all the traffic and related chaos will be confined to the golden triangle?  Once the “camel’s nose is under the tent,” so to speak, and this complex is built, there is no going back.   

If it is not already too late, I implore the handful of people entrusted with the power to make this momentous decision to please think of what is at stake here. The fate of this unique and historic town, which is our home, is in your hands. Are we, after 375 years of stellar caretaking and wise decisions, going to be the generation that changes the character of this beautiful, peaceful and historic town for all future generations? Are we going to continue the time-honored tradition of being good stewards of this land or are we going to be dazzled by famous sports stars who have promised us the moon?

Even in the highly unlikely event that all this results in a lower tax rate (don’t hold your breath on that one), will Sandwich still be a place we want to live? Once the Sandwich we know and love is gone, it’s gone forever. Please think long and hard—do we want to be the generation responsible for that? 

Kay Merrell
Faunce Mountain Road


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  • Landisro

    So disappointed at the decision the selectmen made re: this proposed "world-class" sports center. Totally wrong for Sandwich. First of all, the chance for lower tax rates is not based on reality. Are people traveling from all over (and spending money) to see a bunch of athletes compete here? People come to Sandwich for history and charm. No one is vacationing here for athletic events nor are people moving here because they want to be near a complex. Spend the money on schools (which would attract new families) and improving the roads.