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Blog Entry - October 2019 

Peggy Matthews-Nilsen

An article in the Gazette's Home section on October 11, 2019, written by columnist, Mickey Rathbun, was a stunning reminder of how we can appreciate things in distant lands and yet fail to appreciate what gems we have right under our nose. Ms. Rathbun writes about a 40 year-old "intimate, shaded garden tucked in behind the Jefferson Market Library in Greenwich Village" and describes the sanctuary this small garden with its canopy of mature trees provides in this part of New York City.  Click here to read Garden article.

 

What struck me as I read this article, was how Amherst has its own version of just such a lovely sanctuary in the Kinsey Garden behind the Jones Library.  Sadly, many in our town appear resigned to the fate of losing the Kinsey Garden perhaps in the mistaken belief that the Demolition-Expansion of Jones Library is necessary. Or perhaps, after the rash of 5-story buildings downtown without even a postage stamp setback from sidewalks, residents feel powerless to hold onto even this small gem of green space.

 

What if instead of accepting the loss of Kinsey Garden as necessary or inevitable, people contacted the Jones Library Trustees and urged them to support a full renovation of the Jones Library rather than the proposed massive Demolition-Expansion. Amherst could avoid unnecessary demolition and keep its small green sanctuary, the Kinsey Memorial Garden.   (See Kinsey Garden page for more.)

The aerial view shows the existing footprint of the Jones Library building in RED that is already larger than all of its neighbors. The small building to the left indicated in BLUE is the 1750's Strong House, which is the home of the Amherst History Museum.

The canopy of mature trees in the Kinsey Garden at the rear of the Jones Library, indicated in GREEN, would be destroyed by the Demolition-Expansion. 

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