Protecting a natural legacy
For the public good
|Referendum letter to Bob Lambert|
Mr. Bob Lambert
Re: Request pertaining to May 11th Parks Referendum. (Letter originally dated 2/24/04)
We fully appreciate the City’s impressive use over the years of cash park fees and density transfer agreements with developers to secure open spaces and trail corridors. Combined with past land donations, 1994’s old woods/prairie bluff bonding referendum and a few state grants, our city, under your guidance, has been able to nearly complete the securing of a remarkable green infrastructure during a period of expansive growth; one which will enable its residents, businesses, professions and schools to thrive.
And, thank you, the Parks Commission and City Council for shaping the upcoming parks bonding referendum. It is clear that substantial thought has been invested into crafting a strategy which will help our aging and growing park and recreation system.
We understand that the proposed $1 million dollar share of the $22.5 million dollar total of the referendum question will be reserved for land acquisitions for our park and trail system and that an additional $600,000 will be directed toward trail construction.
Although there is high merit in the City’s intent to leverage the $1 million dollars with State grants and private gifts should the referendum pass and although the City may be able to shift park referendum moneys from one set of projects to others if such funds become available, we request that the amount of dollars for land acquisition in the parks referendum be increased by at least $1 million.
The high cost of land will only increase and the parcels the city has identified to complete its trail corridors and parks are also of the kind that are most appealing to developers. Riley and Purgatory Creek corridors, the Birch Island Road parcel and citizen requests to acquire open space for our parks system, including but not limited to the Anderson property in the Hillcrest neighborhood, clearly demand a reasonably sized reserve fund for acquisition when these properties become available. This kind of reserve fund is working admirably for the City of Minnestonka which on Monday February 23, 2004 approved the purchase of 30 acres of mostly open space east of Interstate 494 at Stone Road for $2.6 million. *
As older Eden Prairie neighborhoods, business and industrial areas are
redeveloped, as private outlots and residential lots are subdivided and
developed, as some County and State lands and private golf clubs are released
to the Real-estate market, our city’s
Jeff Strate, Member, Friends of Birch Island Woods and
Sponsored by The Friends of Birch Island Woods. Copyright © 2000. All rights reserved.