State leaders -- and now U.S. Rep. Brian Higgins -- are focused on plans to remove two stretches of the Robert Moses Parkway in Niagara Falls.
But one reader wonders what will become of the southernmost part of the Moses, which carries tourists into the city from the North Grand Island Bridge.
To be clear, that stretch -- which fronts what Higgins called the "chemical alley" of manufacturing plants -- will remain even as the other two areas are reconfigured or removed. The state would be slow to tear out that portion, especially since it funnels millions of travelers into Niagara Falls State Park each summer.
But the reader sees the four-mile concrete ribbon a bit differently, and his thoughts may be a glimpse into the minds of others who drive along the Moses each year:
"Almost two years ago, I moved to the Buffalo region from the New York City area, as my wife grew up in Amherst and wanted to move closer to family," the reader writes. "I had never been to Niagara Falls before, and the first time was an eye-opener as I found filth, industry and run-down/abandoned buildings – the complete opposite of the Canadian side. I never knew of this shame before, only that Niagara Falls was a beautiful wonder of the world. Never was I aware of the reality of Niagara Falls.
"Each time friends or family visit from out of town, seeing the Falls is a requisite trip," he continues. "Each and every time, the expression as we drive along the RM Parkway is the same – disgust and amazement of the industry spewing waste into the air and (impossible to avoid) water and ground. Growing up outside of the Buffalo/Niagara geographical area, we didn’t know that the Niagara Falls that comes to mind is completely different from the reality."
And his thoughts on the Moses' southern strip?
"At this point, there’s just no way I’d ride my bike along the waterfront and think to myself, “Isn’t that a beautiful chemical plant?”