To the Readers' Forum:
Entering the city of Jamestown from the north via Route 60, North Main Street, one is greeted by the beautiful trees of Lake View Cemetery to the east and by the red pine and spruce trees to the west. For nearly 100 years these beautiful, stately trees have welcomed city residents and visitors alike. These trees make an enduring and positive statement. They say that we care about our urban forest and take pride in maintaining it. They create a sense of "place" to the residents of Jamestown as well as to those folks (tourists and/or visitors) that frequent our city daily.
Over the past 31 years, the city has been awarded "Tree City U.S.A." status by the Arbor Day Foundation, presented to the city by the New York State Department of Environmental conservation's Division of Urban Forestry. With this recognition the city annually celebrates Arbor Day with tree planting festivities at schools, in city parks and at other designated planting sites.
Presently there is a proposal under review by the Jamestown Planning Commission to allow a Tim Hortons to be built at the corner of North Main Street (NY Route 60) and West Oak Hill Road. The site plan under review indicates that every city owned tree on the west side of North Main Street from West Oak Hill to the north end of this property, will be destroyed.
The Planning Commission must say ''No'' to Tim Hortons and direct them to an alternate site.
I attended the last Planning Commission meeting, voicing my concerns and disapproval regarding the Tim Hortons development. My disapproval wasn't just for the protection and well being of the those beautiful trees, but it was also directed towards the elimination of the potentially hazardous conditions that will be created by the points of ingress and egress into Tim Hortons from North Main Street. This is surely an accident just waiting to happen
At the last meeting of the Planning Commission, I was accused of not supporting economic growth, new development and job creation. Not so. I want to see Jamestown grow and prosper but I don't believe that development should be a "mandate" pursued by the Planning Commission when existing design criteria and site limitations are telling you (the commission) that the project should not be.
Save our trees. Save our sense of "place" and too, protect our residents and visitors from the potentially hazardous conditions that are being overlooked by the Planning Commission, the city and the developer, for the sake of development.
Albert D. Cala