By Victoria Gulino
Huntington is a well-loved destination for visitors and for those who call it home.
The intersection of Park Avenue and Route 25A/Main Street is an entry into the heart of Huntington surrounded by historical and cultural icons, much of which make it so loved and valued.
Developing this visually prominent corner will chip away at Huntington’s “sense of place” a quality that reflects a strong identity that is recognized and felt by visitors and residents alike. This quality of place cannot be taken for granted and its existence is only as strong as those who recognize its value and speak up for its sustained presence. Ultimately “sense of place” is fragile if not treated with the reverence it deserves it can be lost.
If decision makers look at the whole environment rather than isolated parts then intelligent, holistic, sustainable development is possible alongside the respect for preservation. That intersection is already negatively affected by the chaotic increase in traffic. This small parcel of space presents an opportunity to continue to move Huntington into the 21st century by learning from mistakes, appreciating the value of green spaces, the ability to create moments of peace through an experience of beauty, recognizing the value of “place” and the limitations of thoughtless, soulless development at the expense of community and quality of life.
Why not create something that enhances respect and love for this town and the wellbeing for the community; a gesture of generosity rather than profit?
This is a great opportunity for creative planning and vision.
Perhaps a kiosk to welcome visitors, a statue recognizing the history and natural environment of Huntington, native plants, benches, fountain and garden, all of which continue in the best spirit of Huntington.
Victoria Gulino is a resident of Huntington