Concerned citizen implores Columbia County Planning Commission to implement environmental mitigation


“It’s like they don’t see trees anymore. They see Olive Gardens and Storage Facilities."

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The Columbia County Planning Commission meets Thursday, September 5th at 6:00pm in the government building auditorium. Commissioners are set to discuss a development for a corner that’s currently all wooded.

While the public will have a chance to comment on the proposed development, one county resident is curious as to why the plans do not include any environmental mitigation.

Marlena Bergeron says no regulations are in place for commercial development.

“It’s like they don’t see trees anymore. They see Olive Gardens and Storage Facilities. Our property values and are pride are affected, as well as our environmental security for the future. “

She points out that other communities are incorporating roof top gardens, and planting grass and more trees when preserving bigger chunks of undeveloped, wooded areas as buffers between roads and businesses and neighborhoods.

“I’m going to the meeting to demand that business models and environmental regulations for commercial development be revised to reflect the major site land grading ordinance passed for residential areas. Construction, be it residential or commercial, will appreciate in value when it interfaces with the natural world, when it complements and conserves the existing landscape. The converse is also true.”

Bergeron says what’s happening here is regrettable and irreversible.

“When we convince our leaders that environmental protections are pro-life and that we can “Keep Columbia County Beautiful” AND accommodate a common vision for growth, we will be better positioned for a brighter and sustainable future. How do we get these folks to see that the trees ARE the investment itself?”

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