Letter: Preserve Amon Basin, jewel of the desert

August 23, 2013 

I lived 12 years on Carner Street in Richland, viewing a rare disappearing jewel of desert and historical significance.

The shocking plan, to change Amon Basin to mid-density/commercial development, will bulldoze it level, cover up to 40 percent of that space with "hard surface" and light it up for business. Housing is not needed here, commerce is less appropriate.

Where are Richland's planning promises to protect open spaces, historic relevance and the unique character of our city? Instead, the open space at Amon Basin should be bought by the city to replace sold riverfront. No other historic or environmental site in our area is as significant or accessible as this.

A time capsule of our past, Amon Creek Natural Preserve blesses us, informs us of invaluable truths, and gives us joy. It preserves: Natural springs, where gases bubble up from ages past; endangered plant and animal species; disappearing desert habitat; ice-age relics and landform evidence; beaver dams; quiet, unpaved pathways; dark night space; rushing streams and quiet lakes and a few miles of strolls, walks or runs.

Bulldozers, concrete to its edge and across its water and pathways and the bright light of commerce will force the life from our preserve.

SHIRLEY LUCAS, Richland

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