A Job Well Done
Dear Bay Weekly:
Thank you. It’s time someone remembered the original intent of Labor Day: To honor a nation of workers. I was delighted to see that pride in a job well done still lives on, especially so in the younger generation.
And as much as my wife enjoys the ideas in your traditional Leaving Summer Behind edition, she admits she would prefer to read it while wearing a turtleneck rather than while sweating in the garden. We say abandon the inclination to shove fall and winter holidays at us while the weeds are still growing. We look forward to reading about pumpkins and mums in due time.
Robert Pascal, Annapolis
and Washington, D.C.
You Can’t Love a Bay You Don’t Know
Dear Bay Weekly:
Why should anyone care about the Chesapeake Bay? Why should even taxpayers and voters who live in the region care what happens to it? Ninety-five percent of the people who live in the watershed have no stake in the Bay or have very limited access to it. About 90 percent of Anne Arundel County residents are in the same predicament, with at best only highly restricted access opportunities to the Bay.
Those are restrictions we can correct, creating a powerful constituency of advocates who love, use and cherish the Bay and demand action from their government officials.
Here’s how to start in Anne Arundel County:
1. Open up parks that now have restricted access Jug Bay Wetlands Sanctuary, Severn Run Natural Environment Area, Annapolis Waterworks Park and Thomas Point Park on the model of Quiet Waters Park, with unrestricted daily access, well-marked access points, adequate parking and waterfront trails.
2. Develop a partnership between Anne Arundel County and the Smithsonian Institution for Environmental Studies to fully open that waterfront property as an everyday public park with trails and parking.
3. Establish swimming beaches at Downs and Quiet Waters parks, and create boat-launching facilities at Downs Park.
4. Identify individuals or organizations willing to preserve natural land resources in a similar fashion to the work done by the American Chestnut Land Trust in Calvert County. Such a trust could buy extensive Chesapeake Bay waterfront land in our county, preserve it and then make it accessible to the public as parklands.
5. Establish two 25-mile-long bike and walking trails directly on the Bay shore in Anne Arundel County to provide Bayside viewing and access. Identify county-owned waterfront and, in conjunction with private owners or where necessary via eminent domain, build the trails on shorefront easements.
6. Now that the David Taylor Research Center initiatives have failed or stalled, the county should take possession, demolish the assets and convert the entire property into a public park with trails, picnic areas and small boat launch facilities similar to Quiet Waters and Sandy Point State Park.
J. Philip Ferrara, Arnold