Traverse City public hearing

Thirlby Field was donated to Traverse City in 1934 for a football stadium. For 75 years it has had a grass parking lot. Then, the environment wasn't a significant consideration. In 2000 we understood the importance of reducing impermeable areas within our concrete jungles. Cities changed laws to reduce storm water runoff by increasing permeable surfaces. Traverse City joined to movement to protect the bay.

Our “planning” commission plans to strike from the current ordinance the requirement that Thirlby Field maintain grass parking so Traverse City Area Public can pave it. While this asset is owned by TCAPS, it belongs to city residents and having a green area on 14th Street provides benefits now and far into the future.

What benefit would be achieved by allowing more pollution in our bay via an almost 3 acre parcel being paved for intermittent use?

I suggested they use football striping equipment to create organized parking on the grass during football season as well as summer festival parking.

The planning department should provide a detailed cost benefit analysis including an environmental impact study for changing the code to allow a paved parking lot before it becomes law. People need an explanation.

Norman Schmitt

Traverse City

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