Be Careful What You Ask the Government to Do for You

  The welcome arch in Stuart, Floriday.  Source of the photo:  online version of the NYT article cited below.

 

STUART, Fla., Oct. 2 — As land-boom boasts went, the 1925 headline was only mildly preposterous:  “Stuart Bigger Than Miami in 10 Years,” it sang.

A cross-state shipping canal was in the works, and Stuart, about 100 miles north of the city it hoped to surpass, sat at the eastern terminus.  It envisioned becoming a thriving commercial hub and built the Stuart Welcome Arch, a proud gateway on the old road into town, to embody that dream.  "Atlantic Gateway to the Gulf of Mexico," its bronze lettering proclaimed.

. . .

The cross-state canal became more bane than boon when the state started using it to flush polluted overflow from Lake Okeechobee out to sea.

“Everyone wanted that canal,” said Sandra Thurlow, a local historian, “and yet it has caused so many problems.”

 

For the full story, see:

ABBY GOODNOUGH.  "STUART JOURNAL; A Symbol Stands, but the Dreams Have Shifted."  The New York Times, Section 1  (Sun.,  October 8, 2006): 16.

(Note:  ellipsis added.)

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