Outer Harbor will work just fine without housing
The Outer Harbor can’t work if it is not inhabited? Of course it can. It can be what it is – waterfront, parkland and very light on programmed uses. It is our existing, underpopulated neighborhoods that can’t work without inhabitants. Let’s fill them up first before we sprawl to the Outer Harbor.
The argument that it is necessary to subsidize the Harbor Development Corp. plan to then subsidize the parkland is also flawed. Skip the middleman and go straight to the park.
Our existing neighborhoods, commercial districts and cultural venues need to be much more fully utilized before we even consider new planned communities. In the meantime, let’s have the waterfront be just that – largely unadulterated waterfront for the people. The restorative powers of nature, the respite from urban life, are not experienced in an overdesigned space on a small 125-foot strip of walkway set aside for people. They happen in the vastness of the space. The proposed narrow, public walkway is reminiscent of what Bass Pro tried to thrust upon us on the Inner Harbor. Narrow, little access paths penned in by sprawling residential and commercial uses are not the waterfront the taxpayers want.
Teddy Roosevelt said in reference to the Grand Canyon: “Keep this wonder of nature as it is now. You cannot improve on it. The ages have been at work on it, and man can only mar it.” This statement applies to our own waterfront and parks, too. We deserve no less.