Take a ride down the road that inspired Arboria Park!

The road that inspired Arboria Park recently opened in Dover, Delaware. It’s called the POW/MIA Parkway. This gives me mixed feelings since my late father was a POW during World War II. He’d be happy that he and his fellow POWs were being honored but dismayed at how the project destroyed part of our former neighborhood.

Here’s a video that takes you from Rt. 13 (“the highway” in the book), past the shopping center (in the book, the road project was more elaborate and the shopping center was torn down). You next pass the neighborhood that inspired the book. On that road used to be 13 houses, two of which I was familiar with as a child (one a home of schoolmates and the other of my mother’s best friend). It then passes a farm I used as inspiration for both the Ramsey and Oakley farms. The road terminates at an existing road near the Kraft Foods plant (Fine Foods in the novel). It was General Foods when I grew up, and our air often smelled like chocolate.

It’s odd that after so many years of construction that the road is only one lane in each direction (there currently is a discussion of this on a Facebook page I belong to that is about downstate Delaware–everyone thinks it’s a mistake). It seems like a project designed to relieve congestion and that no doubt will spark more excessive development along its path should be four lanes, at least. My guess is that within a few years, it will need to be expanded and there will be more disruption and destruction along the route.


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