Brookhaven, GA, September 22, 2015 – Commentary by Stan Segal – When I talk to friends and neighbors about Brookhaven the conversation often has the same tone. We love our city, but traffic is killing us, overcrowding in schools is hurting our children, and we are losing our beautiful tree canopy.
All three issues are byproducts of increased density.
Single family low density homes built in the decades of 1940, 1950, 1960 are seen as ‘under utilized’ land where more expensive houses can be built, more tax revenue can be generated, and more people can live in Brookhaven. Two adjoining homes, each on a half acre lot, become eight houses. More people move in, more cars travel the roads, more children attend our schools, fewer trees enhance and protect our environment.
So what can be done? The landowners of these older homes do have a right to sell, the new houses are in great demand, and the city has a responsibility to provide infrastructure solutions.
We need some BIG IDEAS!! A vision for our city that balances the pressure for increased density with the desire to protect and preserve the current character and quality of life.
We need to stop playing defense and design a vision of our future that balances the needs of these often competing stakeholders.
Many Brookhaven citizens have the education, training, experience, and creativity to envision these BIG IDEAS. Let’s find a way to engage the best and brightest in our city.
If we can rally behind a vision of our future, we’ll gather the resources to make it a reality.
Start the dialogue NOW, and stop playing defense.
– Stan Segal, Brookhaven Resident
Stan Segal serves as Chair of the Brookhaven Planning Commission