The game’s use of land and water is out of sync with today’s needs.
Demand for land, water is out of proportion
In response to the Feb. 18 Letter of the Day concerning golf in Minneapolis, I would like to point out that Theodore Wirth was developing parks for the era, and that if he were building the park system now, his view for community usage would be quite different. He believed in a diversity of activities, from birding to hiking, skiing and swimming.
Golf has been on national and local decline for the past quarter-century, and even the experts agree on that. Minneapolis has seven courses and three driving ranges in its system, with golf dominating half of Wirth Park’s 760 acres. I believe the city should offer golf but should look to Wirth’s original intention of bringing green space and recreation to the general public. Recreation attitudes have changed, and it would be wise to consider uses that reflect that.
WILLIAM O’REILLY, Minneapolis
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I read the Feb. 16 article “Drought sparks big fire risk in California” while on the TV the PGA Northern Trust tournament was being played on lush greens at the Riviera Country Club near Los Angeles. How could water be used for the golf course when farmers don’t have enough water to plant food crops?
This question is relevant to every community with a golf course. Golf courses do aid the economy of many communities, but can we afford their lushness? California can’t — so the Riviera planted a noxious weed — drought-resistant Kikuyu grass from Africa. Do Minnesota courses use drought-resistant grasses?
BRUNO S. GAD, Clear Lake, Minn.
Group home opposition was mischaracterized
I was annoyed by two recent articles that characterized Golden Valley as narrow-minded and heartless regarding neighborhood group homes and mental-health facilities. There are dozens of such facilities in Golden Valley; at least one is in my neighborhood. Some neighborhoods have more than one.
What the citizens of Golden Valley dislike is the apparent lack of control and oversight that they and the city have over such facilities, and the secrecy surrounding them. Furthermore, has anyone investigated LifeSpan, the company that has made the current request? What do we know about it, its methods and its track record? It may or may not be stellar.
The Star Tribune could be more helpful by providing information, not emotion, on its noneditorial pages.
JANE PAGENKOPF, Golden Valley
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