Friends of the Eagan Core Greenway

Letters to the Editor

Eagan ThisWeek
Saturday, March 26, 2005

On The Diamond T Property

To the editor:

The Eagan Planning Commission passed a zoning change and planned development for the former Diamond T Ranch. This latest plan has dense housing that does not meet R-3 standards and impacts the most environmentally valuable and sensitive areas of the property. The Commission Chair stated that the sole advantage to the community of this plan was that the illegally dumped waste gets cleaned up at the developer's expense. Who really bears the burden of this plan?

Dakota County knows the identities of the parties that dumped this waste to begin with. Let's have those that made this mess and the landowner pay to clean it up. Then solicit a plan for the Diamond T property that respects the EAW and comments from resident taxpayers, the DNR, Met Council, Soil and Water Conservation District, and others.

We need to proceed with caution. The City of Eagan, Dakota County and MPCA allowed this illegal dumping and did nothing about it for 20 years. The proposed solution has the potential to cause great harm. Threatened species habitat will be decimated, traffic in residential neighborhoods will increase dramatically, 73% of healthy trees will be destroyed, wetlands will be filled, storm water will be sent untreated into and houses built less than 30 feet from Lebanon Hills Regional Park. Even city staff has concerns about the safety issues of this current plan. Unbelievably, this plan will allow construction within the designated boundaries of a City storm water pond area shared by the regional park. All this in Governor Pawlenty's own back yard.

It is the environment, the neighbors, the residents downstream, the future residents of the development and our community as whole that will ultimately pay the price. We embrace hope that the Mayor and Eagan City Council members will show more wisdom and respect for the wishes of their constituents and the community than the developer, the City and Dakota County have shown in moving forward with multiple plans designed strictly to maximize tax base and big corporate profit. The potential liabilities and capricious nature of this plan's approval far outweigh any short-term benefits.

Eric Vevea

Friends of the Diamond T Property

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