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Dear Editor,

I am not a native. I moved here from Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, once known as “The Garden Spot of America.” That was before developers turned rich, beautiful and productive farmland into housing developments. Now, on a slightly smaller scale, it rivals suburban Denver in terms of dense, nonstop development.

When I arrived here 25 years ago, I jumped at the first opportunity to prevent that disaster from happening here. It presented itself as a workshop with Bob Chadwick to collect and organize what citizens wanted to see, or not see, in Chaffee County’s future. Later, I served on the Chaffee County Roundtable in Sustainability, again working with diverse, compassionate, and intelligent people to keep ranch land for the ranchers and land abutting towns for new development. Both of these events led to the Land Use Code and Chaffee County Comprehensive Plan, which I understand are in a state of revision based on previous work from the roundtable and subsequent work by Envision.

The thought of the Centerville Project materializing is appalling. It would be highly visible, on a scenic byway, overly dense and seriously premature to complete and thorough data on the detriment to traffic, cost to county taxpayers, wildlife and particularly WATER, which, unlike Lancaster County, does not have an unlimited supply. It is precisely the opposite here; a very precious and limited commodity.

My plea to people is to make your voice heard in every possible way to the commissioners, and all those involved in this insensible and caustic proposal. This project will set a precedent for the future of Chaffee County. I have never seen a development revert to natural habitat. Once done, it is forever!

Conrad Nelson
Buena Vista, CO