To the Editor:
After reading Art Erdmann’s Letter to the Editor (Oct. 6) regarding the proposed land swap between DeKalb School District 428 and a developer, I was startled and appalled at the thought of losing our soccer fields. Everything Erdmann mentioned makes sense and motivated me to think and question the idea. The proposed swap makes no sense at all.
This wonderful field has been a huge asset not only to the south side of the city but also to the entire community. There is plenty of room to run a program that has serviced the American Youth Soccer Organization, summer camps and private soccer clubs for as long as I can remember.
The DeKalb Park District has done an outstanding job of maintaining the facility, and trees recently have been planted to beautify and provide shade.
It’s obvious that people care about this facility, which along with the recreational center and the school provide a lovely gateway into the southern part of our city.
This side of town has some nice businesses that would be affected by the loss of our soccer fields. If anything, our community leaders should be thinking about collaborating to enhance this area, perhaps with an expansion of the tax increment financing district. Why should everything be located on the north side of town? Where’s the vision?
It is unthinkable to imagine going from what is now a generous 42-acre facility to a facility of 34 acres. How is it to be developed? This land floods during heavy rains, which is as it should be with park land. District 428 commented that this property “has no value to us.” Does the district leadership realize that “us” should include the community? What one entity does affect all of “us.” The value is in how this land has been and will be utilized over the years.
This issue brings to light how it involves opportunities for children and families, not developers. I plan to connect with as many people as possible to do what I can to protect the quality of life in our community.
Hopefully others can be encouraged to come forward and show the power of “us” can motivate those entrusted with leadership positions to make good decisions for “us” all.