Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Owning the river.

So do they own the river?  Or the land beneath Mirror Pond?

A long lawsuit trying to decide the matter would just accomplish the same thing they want -- the delay in tearing down the dam.

Look, I personally think we have to keep Mirror Pond.  We have to dredge it.  Shore up the damn and generate a little money and build the fish ladder, and so on.

Going to cost a ton of money.

Which we don't have.  Here's the thing -- when you spend millions on an unfunded bus system, and then you get sued for having faulty wheelchair access, you don't have the money.  When you spend millions on a pie in the sky project like Juniper Ridge, then you don't have the money to fix the water system.  When you bank on future growth in a UGB that isn't realistic, you don't have the money to fix Mirror Pond.

A "natural" river sounds good.  Have you been down to the natural river lately?  Not the parks, the actual river.  I bet most haven't because you'd have to work your way through thick brush and mud and waves of insects.   It won't be visually appealing, or experientially mentally appealing, unless you built paths and parks and so on.  Which costs money.

It all just comes back to money and how stupid the city council has been with it. 


Helen said...


Anonymous said...

Hypocritical to the point of hilarity:

"Have you been down to the natural river lately? Not the parks, the actual river."

Patently untrue:

"I bet most haven't because you'd have to work your way through thick brush and mud and waves of insects."

Holy crap. Are you serious? When was the last time you went to the non-park portions of the river, Duncan? You gotta get out of the garden/house/store/occasional visit to another part of the state rut, buddy.

Almost all portions are easily reached from Sunriver to below First Street Rapids. It's called the Deschutes River Trail.

"Mud"? If you choose to wade in, sure. "Waves of insects"? You mean that three-week period in July? "Thick brush"? I guess it's thick in spots -- but not as thick as the minds of Bend lifers and their short, possessive, postcard-centric view of history ...

Duncan McGeary said...

Well, I could very well be wrong.

I'm not sure where hypocrisy comes in...

Anonymous said...

Hypocrisy may have been a strong word, but you're assuming people who want a "natural river" haven't been to the river lately, when it seems you haven't been there lately.

Duncan McGeary said...

I actually go to the wild parts of the river quite often. But I do avoid the paths at the center of town.

Seems to me that if you want to go out for a nature walk, then you should walk in nature -- not an over-used and over-civilized tourist path.

I'm just not sure it will be as attractive and useable as people think. Unless -- more money is spent on trails and cutting back and manicuring. And if we're going to do that, let's spend the money on keeping the pond.

I'm an old Bendite. I couldn't understand why the Pilot Butte Inn couldn't be saved. Imagine how awesome downtown would be with THAT as its anchor.

I'm not invested in this. Either way, I don't go the Drake Park all the much. Like I said, it doesn't feel like nature to me.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, I don't go there much either. I just don't see the value of a stagnant, goose poop-filled pond that will again and again require dredging over a healthy river. Arguments in favor of a pond tend toward "But that's how it's 'always' been, you dummies! It's on the postcards even! What's wrong with you?"

Let voters decide.

Duncan McGeary said...

Thing is -- it wasn't like that when I was a kid. It was clean fresh water, and we used to swim and fish there all the time. Crawdads. Rope in the tree over the river kind of thing.

It's the damn geese.