Open Letter to Spartanburg County Council

Last week I was among those who received an email from a Spartanburg County government staffer, saying “your County Councilmember … suggested that you may have valuable input about potential improvements to the county’s land development regulations.” I am flattered that you would ask my advice, even in a bulk mail manner. As you probably know if you have read this column...

My Two Cents for the Park Tax

Yesterday afternoon we took an hour or so to walk in what we like to call “Spartanburg’s Central Park,” the Edwin Griffin Preserve (The Cottonwood Trail) on the Lawson’s Fork. It’s the closest public space to our house, and we get out to it as much as possible. I like our house and surrounding private yard, but I’m a big, big fan of public places where people...

The Pace of Change

Change, we’re told, is natural. It’s impossible to hold anything in suspension very long. Even if old things and places survive they fade from their former glory. The termites eat houses. Foundations shift. Trees we thought would never die fall down in a wind storm. The places and things we remember from our childhood are often transformed by neglect and abandonment or commerce and...

Land-use so an Alien can Understand it

I was out weeding my wildflower garden this week and, I kid you not, a spaceship landed. It was small and looked a little like an outdoor charcoal grill, all shiny and round. When it spoke I realized it was not an errant flying charcoal grill, but a curious creature from a galaxy far away. “What could you possibly want with us?” I asked. The grill said with a high electric voice that...

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