Sunday, April 15, 2007

My Changing Neighborhood

We have lived in Windermere since July 2004. It has been an idyllic slice of rural living on the edge of the city and it has been wonderful. We have enjoyed many wildlife visits, a huge variety of birds, brighter night skies than neighborhoods just a few miles away. It has been wonderful.

As you've probably concluded, this is changing. Crews are working hard at getting services (water and sewer) into the farmers fields around us. Houses are going up like wildfire in the neighborhood on the east side of 170 Street where services were finished last summer.

So, there is ugly construction mess all around us. There is equipment, dirt piles, pipe, traffic, all of the things that go with development and building a new neighborhood.

The long term gain to all of this will be an increase to our property value, with city services to us and upscale homes built around us, an increase in local services such as grocery stores, and some new city amenities like walking trails and parks. All good things.

The price that we will pay, I am sure, is a loss of local wildlife and the quiet, sleepy community that we now enjoy. Another price will be light pollution.

We walked with Kelso for the whole length of Windermere Drive tonight - all the way to 4th Avenue. Along our way, we saw several Canada geese in the fields, glowing in the early evening light. Shoulda had the camera... On our way home, we saw 5 deer grazing in the field. They listened to us, and loped away as we got close - peered at s out of the tree stand. Seeing the deer got me thinking abut whether that particular tree stand would stay or go. And that got me thinking about my changing neighborhood.

Will we move because of the development? Not likely. Will it make our lifestyle better or worse? Probably some of each. Will it greatly affect our quality of life? I guess this will be the difficult question to answer. I love the quiet. I love the dark, dark night sky. I love the wildlife visits to my yard. How much these will change has yet to be seen. So, as my dad would say 'Only time will tell'.

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