Thursday, March 6, 2008

Lack of foresight doomed the trees

Letters to the Editor
Thursday, March 6, 2008 - Commercial Appeal
Lack of foresight doomed the trees

As the president of a zoo that boasts its own conservation efforts, one would think Chuck Brady would have had the foresight and felt the obligation to have invited the public's input before embarking on a project that destroyed a large area of old growth forest in Overton Park (March 5 article, "Group upset zoo took out 139 trees to build Teton Trek").

As a former National Park Service ranger, I know that undertaking a project of such magnitude without first seeking public input is irresponsible, and in the modern era of public park lands is almost unheard of. A master plan is fine, but zoo officials have every obligation -- if indeed they wish to be good neighbors -- to make their plans known to the public through meetings.

Let us hope that before the zoo cranks up its bulldozers again, it acts responsibly and holds public forums on projects such as this one.

Greg Russell