Too Much Love

RECEIVED Fri., Oct. 10, 2008

Dear Editor,
    I love Lady Bird Lake. So does everybody else. Unfortunately, the very "love" that so many of us have for the trail and the water is ruining our most beloved green space.
    At times, the trail gets so crowded that it becomes a conveyor belt. In warmer weather, all the kayaks and canoes turn the lake into one vast bumper-cart free-for-all.
    After every Austin City Limits Music Festival, the lake's surface is bip-boppin' away with all sorts of trash afloat.
    The grand mansions west of MoPac on the south shore suck up the water for their own use. More than once, I have detected the odor of chlorine lingering in the air near the mansions' pipes. What sort of abuse is that? Can one file criminal charges?
    A boardwalk proposed for the southeast section of Lady Bird Lake is yet another disturbance to a fragile riparian ecosystem. More disturbing to me is the prospect of developing UT's Brackenridge Tract west of MoPac on the northern shore. From the water, it appears to be the last undisturbed "wilderness" in Austin. Herons and owls alight.
    If only the city of Austin could collaborate with the Texas Parks & Wildlife Department to develop other areas around the city for people to flock to and enjoy and thus spare Lady Bird Lake from being "loved to death"!
    The purpose of planning should be to reduce pressure on the local ecosystem. Adding a boardwalk to the trail is just exacerbating the problem and proves that we do not have the capacity for sound thinking. Any surprises there? As Molly Ivins would say, "Not so much."
Pamela Sears
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