What are your thoughts on communities closing local parks in order to save funds and generate revenu
St Louis County has recently announced their plan to close some of the area's most popular parks in an effort to save money. Is this ethical? Will the loss in revenue from local businesses exceed the amount of money going to the state?
I don't agree with their logic whatsoever. I understand them wanting to make money and generate revenue but depending on the type of park we're talking about there's the bigger argument of A: a place where local children can go to safely play if it's that style of park and B: enough of our forests have already been decimated for giant chain stores, shopping centers, office buildings, and high-rise buildings.
It's one thing to save/make money but it's another when our future is put in jeopardy in the process.
I believe, in times where you're turning losses of over billions, parks are a mere footpath in your cleansing. While this may not be the "best" option for councils and states, it is a one many will take to reduce losses.
Put yourself in their position. You're given a task, to cut the losses by whatever means possible. You've got the industrial side, which contribute a lot of your income - don't really want to close them. You've got residential side but that will create homelessness and poverty and really doesn't solve anything. You've got commercial side, which like industrial makes income. The only thing you can take away is the places in between these sectors, places such as parks, schools, hospitals, police stations - any place that is provided by the state and paid by the state.
Of course, like I said, this isn't the best way. You can make taxes higher in both industrial and residential. Or make higher taxes in the commercial thus making prices higher on consumer goods. Depends on the state.
I believe in making parks an asset. I come from a small town in Virginia with an enormous and luscious park, something comparable in character to Central Park in NYC. I have never been to another city so far with a decent park as that. Cities can make their parks an asset by using them to attract festivity and being places of where folks want to come after work and on weekends in their down time. Why not build amphitheaters and stages and host plays, concerts, movies, etc? These type of things put places on the map.
My two comments are that it is known that the parks bring a lot of revenue to the city through the patronage of local businesses. Think the local bike store, the gas station next door, etc. The contributions from the money earned from these businesses is likely quite high as they are numerous in St Louis. Not to mention property taxes from increased property value.
One thing I failed to note is that they charge no park fees. The first time I drove into one of their big parks, I drove around looking for a place to leave money. There was not one. I would be happy to pay for a yearly park pass.
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