Letter to the Editor: Town should annex corridor or change boundaries


I think the Front Royal Town Council needs to focus on standing firm with a commitment toward annexing the corridor, or at least gaining boundary adjustments allowing the recovery of revenues that should be coming back to the town.

It is disturbing that council is trying to Band-Aid the issue by striking some sort of compromise with the county, which clearly wants the upper hand in the negotiations. I recall a town councilman stating, “if you can’t grow, you will die” — referencing a memorandum of agreement discussed on or about Jan. 27 limiting the town’s ability to expand borders into the revenue-rich corridor.

I  agree and believe that Front Royal is on the slippery slope of further economic erosion if it can’t expand its borders into the corridor. Waiting 20-30 years to see if development of the Leach Run Parkway project becomes the next winning business catalyst is a tough forecast as a lot variables not all in the town’s control will have to happen in order for that to come to fruition.  It’s clear that corridor growth toward Winchester is a winner and that’s the horse the town needs to ride to the finish line.

Drive around town and look at all the empty commercial buildings and limited foot traffic to support the business currently in town. Then drive out to the corridor on a Friday night and you might be able to find a parking spot if you’re lucky.

Prior to his passing, the late Walter Duncan spent time gathering data for a memorandum that stated the town’s future in our lifetime rides on the it’s ability to obtain a boundary adjustment encompassing the corridor business or annexing the property.

If Front Royal hadn’t run water out to the Dupont facility in the late 1970s, then there wouldn’t be any corridor business to speak of today, or at least the county would have had to finance the majority of the water infrastructure on its nickel.

I believe a strong town equals a strong county, and the only way to stay the course is to follow Walter Duncan’s prophecy.

Bruce Rappaport,  Gainesville