Wheeling Needs Upgrade

Editor, News-Register:

As a girl who grew up in Wheeling in the 1960s and 1970s, I was delighted to see that Wheeling was spotlighted in the Columbus Dispatch travelk section recently. Then I read the article, and I felt more shame than delight. The article was written by a travel reporter about Wheeling Island Casino and the Mountaineer Race Track. He described the facilities at Wheeling Island in a positive fashion.

Then he stated that he had to drive through a seedy neighborhood to get to there. He went on to say that downtown Wheeling had nothing to offer, so it was fortunate that there was plenty to do at the casino.

Many people I know here in Columbus have traveled to the Island, Oglebay, Cabella’s, and they all tell me then same thing. Downtown Wheeling and Wheeling Island are run-down and seedy. It is embarrassing for me, born and raised in Wheeling, to hear such comments about my former hometown.

I cannot help but wonder what happened! How did Wheeling fall so far so quickly? Why is City Council turning a blind eye to the blight that is now downtown? Is it any wonder that the population is in severe decline? Who wants to live in such decay? There needs to be a plan, a feasible plan, to lift Wheeling out of this state, and to return her to the lovely, friendly, dignified city she once was. Stop talking about it. Take action now before it is too late!

Jamie M. Bowsher

Columbus