Letters to the Editor

Preserving open space important

Few residents of the Centre Region are aware of the Patton Crossing development proposed for a portion of the previous Penn State Mobile Home Park. As designed, the plan will remove 2.1 acres of natural forest (which Patton township mandated that the developer of the Northbrook Green Apartment complex preserve as open space) to create an access road from Park Forest Avenue into this new shopping mall.

Creating this access to and from Patton Crossing is contrary to the original plan for Park Forest Village, which was intended to remain a residential community with limited traffic. Creating access into this development from Park Forest Avenue is an unsatisfactory measure, unless this entrance restricts traffic to all vehicles other than buses and emergency vehicles controlled with a gate. This restricted entrance could also provide safe bike paths and pedestrian traffic while maintaining much of the forested buffer.

In 2001, I served as a catalyst to put an Open-Space-Referendum on the ballot to preserve open space. This referendum empowered the residents of Patton Township to have a direct say in their community’s future. The majority of our citizens approved the referendum to voluntarily raise their taxes and provide $2.5 million to preserve open space in Patton Township. This enabled the township to purchase (at below market value) the Haugh Tract to create Circleville Park. Residents have demonstrated our commitment to preserving open space.

The Patton Township Board of Supervisors will meet at 7 p.m. on Wednesday. Come and see what’s proposed.

Brenda F. Walsh, Patton Township