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Editorial: Working together for a better Main Street

Take a walk along Gloucester’s Main Street and you’ll see something you may not find in many small towns across the U.S.—a vibrant and growing business community.

We’ve all seen this scenario before: A strip mall or large department store sets up shop on relatively cheap land on the outskirts of town and, pretty soon, once-busy shops are shuttered and the community’s center has forever shifted.

But that’s not the case with Gloucester. The businesses along Main Street are doing quite well, thank you very much. And a big reason for that is due to the vision and generosity of the late Edwin Joseph and his wife, Adrianne Ryder-Cook Joseph; as well as the hard work of the Main Street Preservation Trust and Gloucester Main Street Association.

A dozen years ago, the Josephs looked at the old Gloucester Exchange Shopping Center and saw an opportunity. Not an opportunity for personal gain, but a chance for revitalizing the Main Street community. They bough...

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