Thursday, October 18, 2007

Another Developer Ignores the Law

A strip mall development called Stonebridge Square, at Arkansas 16 and Stonebridge Road, has been put on hold after violating the city’s grading and tree preservation and landscaping ordinances by filling in an old beaver dam and removing trees without approval.

Tom Hennelly, a Professional Engineer and President of H2 Engineering, representing property owner Gary Combs, says he just misunderstood the law. While a different large-scale development by another developer had once been approved for the property, it didn’t apply to the massive grading and tree removal done in the past few months. This developer made significant changes that were not approved, and the illegal tree removal requires replanting a total of 30 percent of the tree canopy on-site. Hennelly complained about being "penalized" by having to replant perhaps as many as 163 trees.

"Any fool can destroy trees," said John Muir. "They cannot run away; and if they could, they would still be destroyed -- chased and hunted down as long as fun or a dollar could be got ..." Fools, it appears, are breaking out all over. This developer destroyed the trees so he could build another strip shopping center with a bank, a fast-food joint, and a White Oak Station and so a dollar could be got.

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