THERE ARE ALWAYS AT LEAST TWO SIDES TO EVERY MAJOR INTERNATIONAL AND NATIONAL ISSUE SUCH AS CLIMATE CHANGE, GUN CONTROL, URBANIZATION AND REGIONALISM.
In April 2015 researchers from Yale and Utah State College unveiled a new statistical technique that showed that the majority of U.S. Counties (nearly 80%) disagree that global warming is primarily caused by human activities.
HuffPost Politics reported on October 7, 2015 that 30% of Americans want gun control laws to stay the same and 13% want to loosen restrictions.
Here’s one side to the issue of promoting urbanization and regionalism and the impact of regional planning councils and the Treasure Coast Regional Planning Council, in particular.
“Step aside, everyone. There’s a behemoth waiting in the wings, with its own ideas of what our homes and neighborhoods should look like. If you don’t like those ideas, too bad. The behemoth doesn’t stand for election – ever.” (Source: Katherine Kersten from the Center of American Experiment / September 22, 2014.)
Ms. Kersten believes the behemoths are the regional planning councils who invade local communities and bully us by recommending/deciding how we should be structured and where we should live.
(The Center of the American Experiment is a Minnesota-based think tank that advocates for conservative and free-market principles.) (Source Wikipedia)
Bright Light posted on the Liberty Caucus how our own regional planning council, The Treasure Coast Regional Planning Council (TCRPC), is a “regional parasite” and that they have “schemed the Treasure Coast.”
(Bright Light seeks to promote the ideas of liberty on two basic principles – that of non aggression and private property. The Liberty Caucus “focuses on specific issues like economic freedom, individual liberty, and following the Constitution. The caucus has also been characterized as ‘conservative with a libertarian emphasis’ and associated with the Tea Party movement.”) (Source: Wikipedia)
How have they schemed the Treasure Coast?
Perhaps because in a December 3, 2012 “Letter of Support for the All Aboard Florida Passenger Project,”TCRPC Executive Director Michael J. Busha wrote that “The project is consistent with the Council’s Regional Policy Plan, and several key strategies are noted accordingly.
The program will advance progress to reduce the Region’s vulnerability for fuel price increases and and conversely reinforce a pattern of development that reduces dependency on the automobile, encourages transit, and reduces the overall use of fossil fuels.
The project will also help encourage compact, mixed use development and redevelopment that enhances the preferred use of development and helps contain suburban sprawl (Emphasis added.)
Isn’t Indian River County fighting All Aboard Florida?
TCRPC Executive Director Michael J. Busha
With regard to Mr. Busha’s comment that All Aboard Florida will “reduce the overall use of fossil fuels,” Mikhail Chester and Arpad Horvath wrote in The Life -Cycle Environment Assessment for California High-Speed Rail that “The majority of sulfur dioxide, carbon monoxide, volatile organic compounds and particulate matter now come from not vehicle operation but from other life-cycle components. For bus, rail and air modes, producing and transporting cement…can produce more carbon monoxide than operating the vehicles.”
Further, “propelling a trail requires electricity and the fossil fuels burned to generate that electricity producer sulfur dioxide emissions that can harm human health.”
Now to Transit Oriented Development.
“Containing” urban sprawl is Transit Oriented Development (TOD).
The Congress for New Urbanism (CNU) defines TOD as being “critical to both the success of new transit projects and to the economy of the local communities they serve. What’s particularly great about TOD is that it encourages people to use transit to reach jobs, education, medical care, housing and the other vital services they need.”
In other words isn’t it encouraging people to move from the suburbs to newly created urban communities like All Aboard Florida is developing in Miami, Palm Beach and Fort Lauderdale?
In Vero Beach this same group that wrote a “Letter of Support for the All Aboard Florida Project” is the group designing the proposed Cultural Arts Village.
(Free Image of Vero Beach Cultural Arts Center)
Dana Little, urban designer for TCRPC is drawing schematics of how the Village will look to attract investors. Property will be renovated. Who will be the investors and what will they want? Will people living there now, potentially artists be able to afford to continue living there?
And if it the Center is approved by the Vero Beach City Council, how much will it cost and who is going to pay for it? There has been no reporting of the costs or even how much TCRPC is charging for its design work.
Then there is Seven/50, the regional plan for Southeast Florida, encompassing seven counties “spearheaded by the South Florida and Treasure Coast Regional Planning Councils and the Southeast Florida Regional Partnership (SFRP), a unique collaboration of more than 200 public, private, and civic stakeholders.”
Seven/50 is mapping the strategy for the best-possible quality of life for the more than six million residents of Monroe, Miami-Dade, Broward, Palm Beach, Martin, St. Lucie and Indian River counties.” (Source: Seven50 website)
According to Seven/50 Project Director Marcela Camblor-Cutsaimanis, AICP, Seven/50 “is a unique investment plan that will help guide the allocation of federal and private dollars into the Southeast Florida region in order to help ensure economic prosperity and the best-possible quality of life for its residents.”
Indian River County and St. Lucie County Commissioners voted to opt out of participation in Seven/50.
Is what’s happening that the TCRPC, Seven/50, the Congress of New Urbanism, the Department of Transportation and the U.N.’s Agenda21 want us out of our homes and into their transit oriented corridors?