I’m a resident of the East End in Portland, and I’m writing to express my strong support for the proposed cold-storage facility on Commercial Street.

Portland is an evolving city, and it’s an exciting time to be a resident. While hotels, condominiums and restaurants have been a boon for the city, I feel like we need to maintain a diversified economy. Part of both that economy and the tradition of the city is a strong working waterfront.

Eimskip has been great not only for the city, but also for the state. It is situated in the right space for commercial marine development, and the cold-storage facility is a natural expansion of that established use.

I understand the concerns of West End residents about impacts on their views, but I don’t feel this should be the deciding factor on this project. For the same reason, I was in strong support of the expansion of the former Portland Co. complex on the East End: I don’t feel like a minority of residents should be able to stop a project that is good for the city as a whole.

If we are worried about public views, then we should be far more concerned with the density of buildings going up in the India Street neighborhood and the corridor-effect that development will create, versus the effect of the cold-storage facility on the views on outer Commercial Street in the shadow of the Casco Bay Bridge.

I understand that projects like this often attract a vocal minority of property owners who feel that the project in some way diminishes their quality of life, while a majority of supporters like myself may stay silent. I want to speak out and say that if Portland wants to promote itself as a business-friendly city, good projects like this need to be approved.

Josh Baston