Friday, June 22, 2007

Cumberland Region Tomorrow

Six years ago I attended a series of workshops intended to look at the Cumberland Region of Middle Tennessee and Tennessee as a whole. It just so happen that Mr. Fregonese, from Fregonese Calthorpe and Associates happened to have been born in Argentina as well, so we hit it off from the start. It was a great experience and I was able to see that people feel the same way about our region, we live in one of the most diverse and beautiful parts of our country.

As CRT says in its website “This diversity and beauty are two of our most important assets, whether we consider them from an economic, cultural, environmental or livability perspective. The Cumberland Region - is where we live, share an economy, a transportation network, sports and cultural activities, places to work, and shop, as well as environmental resources. In the global economy, it is our region and state that are competing for new growth and better jobs.”

They continue stating that “at Cumberland Region Tomorrow, we believe that our ten-county region tremendous quality of life is one of our most important attributes that has created and will sustain our long term economic vitality. We also believe that we can preserve our unique communities and beautiful landscapes that are the basis of our quality of life as we accommodate the rapid growth in our region. To do so will require proactive growth planning and collaborative action among many key groups to determine the best locations and approaches for future growth and development. These same groups must then work together for optimal growth to occur.”

CRT’s research … “discovered that current growth trends were destroying the things that citizens of this region value most. The people of the Cumberland Region value their quality of life, which is impacted greatly by this region’s character, heritage, open space, environment, transportation systems, and economic vitality. However, the current growth trends will destroy a significant portion of the land and buildings that define our area. They will be detrimental to our environment and increase the existing problems of our transportation systems. Also, the costs of our current methods of growth will hurt the economies of our communities while taking away the cultural distinctions that bring businesses and new citizens to this region. The decisions that are being made today on how to accommodate the imminent growth of communities will affect the quality of life of every citizen of this region.”

A Toolbox is available at the website if you are concerned as I am, about out of control growth in our region, please take the time to read it, we can and should do better.

Fabian Bedne

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