Saturday, October 18, 2008
Environmental damage from trails could be prevented by building farther from streams and meandering to miss sensitive areas
Please click on image to ENLARGE view of Bobcat loader crossing trail walking bridge over Scull Creek on October 17, 2008.
Solution to environmental damage is to keep trails outside the riparian zone of all streams in the city. A wide buffer of trees or other existing vegetation should be maintained between streams and trails. Red dirt should be allowed only BENEATH the area to be paved and not a single stone or red particle should be allowed outside that limit. No fill material or soil removed from the site or any vegetation removed from the area to be paved should be moved toward the tree.
Decreasing tree canopy over the streams increases summer water temperature and decreases native life in the streams. Simultaneously, the removal of any vegetation increases potential global warming, especially the kind felt by living things (including human beings) in the immediate area. Environmental damage in stream corridors DECREASES the city's credibility as a "center of sustainability" and makes the city's attempts to enforce stormwater regulations and tree-protection rules on developers appear to be hypocritical.
No heavy machinery ( Bobcat machines make destroying the environment too easy )
should be involved in trail construction when more traditional even if more labor-intensive methods can do the job.
Stream corridors are the only wildlife corridors in many parts of our city. Stream riparian zones are the only places native plants can be readily found in parts of our city. Stream corridors should be respected for their many environmental and aesthetic values. The scene in the photo above was totally different a few months ago. The scene would have been a solid line of trees along a beautiful stream. It was a spot where nature ruled unfettered. Now it has been tamed by men and machines and may never be as valuable again. Its destruction was unnecessary.
Trails are built with much more respect for soil, water, air and wildlife in many cities.
The quick way seldom is the best way. To paraphrase something Lioneld Jordan has said, "Do the job right the first time and you have to do it only once."
Links to bids received by city of Fayetteville for bridges for city trail system appear below:
Cost of Fayetteville creek bridges reasonable for trail construction