Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Wetland lot gets reprieve from intense infill

Council decision on Arcadian Court in The Morning News

click image to zoom

When the city council of Fayetteville, Arkansas turned down an appeal by the developer of the propused Arcadian Court to build a bunch of small homes on a wetland lot across from the University Farm on W. Deane Street on Wednesday night not only residents of traditional neighborhoods nearby had to be pleased but also proponents of protecting wetland by "keeping water where it falls" were pleased.
Certainly, new plans for a less dense project will be offered, but every day a relatively natural area is protected counts for many reasons, especially for the unsuspecting and innocent living things inhabiting the land.
The lowest half of the property could remain as a natural rain garden instead of the developer creating a small and likely inadequate detention pond as shown on the previous plan. This is a clear example of the value of paying attention to the NIMBIES. People who have lived in an area usually have good reasons to dissent and be cynical about developers' plans, even though they can't possibly imagine all the problems a given project may cause. This is an example of how preventing the filling of land that previously was left alone has value.
The developer of this project is clearly a well-intentioned person who no doubt will find ways to use the lot that will reduce the damage to the environment. He can start by remodeling an existing home on the site rather than getting rid of an example of truly affordable housing.

1 comment:

piglet said...

I'm wondering what your point is. Do you think that building fewer homes on the lot will be better for the environment? Do you think this will help preserve an ecologically valuable wetland? It doesn't seem likely. Do you think it is better for the environment to build only, say 5 homes on that lot, and then to use another lot for more homes? According to what I read in the paper, the City Council complained about the "high density" development (11 homes on 2 acres - that would be considered low density in any real city). I didn't read anythign about rain garden requirements. Maybe I missed that part. In any case, I'm sure the NIMBIES have done us all and the environment a valuable service by promoting more urban sprawl.