Work on the Skowhegan parking lot has started in earnest. The pavement has been cut carefully, ditches have been dug and huge granite curbstones have been laid.

I would guess 17 parking slots have been displaced thus far by walkways, tree islands and bench locations. And, the work has hardly begun.

I always thought that there were “parking lots” and “recreational parks” — the first for autos and the second for people. Skowhegan has decided to combine both on municipal land.

By my observation, the existing parking lot is pretty full on any day except Sunday. Pedestrian walkways, benches and trees can only eliminate useful parking spots.

Never mind how much the winter plow truck operators will curse the islands and massive curbs; we will just have to wait for them to clear the maze. How many park benches will be in use during the winter? Not many, I suspect.

Variety Drug’s welcomed move, to new facilities on the Northwest corner of the parking lot, will put more pressure on available space. The existing parking, along Water and Commercial streets, will not be practical for customers.

About $400,000, in a grant funded by taxpayers like us, will pay for this revamped parking lot/recreational park. If you think Waterville’s stainless steel sphere is a joke, wait until you see what $400,000 can do.

Richard Joseph LaPorteSkowhegan