Sunday, July 23, 2006

the ICC: potential blockbuster?

After a Road Cuts Through It, They Plan to Forge On

The long-debated intercounty connector is poised to slice [Longmead Crossing] in half diagonally. The highway has received final federal go-ahead, and the first earthmovers could appear on the horizon beyond the soccer field as early as late fall . . .

But some homeowners are not waiting around to find out, [Roger] Plaut included. The doctoral student and his wife, Mene, recently sold their end-unit townhouse to move a few miles west . . . Choosing to leave "was a moral dilemma for us," he said. "We didn't want to live by a six-lane highway. The issue was, 'Sure, we're getting out of it if we sell, but what about the people we've left behind?' "

Plaut has written a slew of letters to the Gazette representing Longmead Crossing and opposing the ICC - but he now lives in Rockville, nowhere near the highway route.

I believe that if you move to a community for certain reasons, you should work to preserve them. In the past, fleeing neighborhoods that "fell on bad times" led to white flight and suburban sprawl. What happens when all those surprised Derwood homeowners decide to leave when the ICC is built? Property values across the County will suffer as a few more acres in Howard County are cleared and subdivided.

Selling out when the ICC comes through - which it will, so long as Dubya (not Bobby Haircut) is in office - is simply cowardice. If you really care about the state of Montgomery County neighborhoods, you stay and fight to the end. I will.

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