Neighboorhood asks for new site selection

To the Editor:

On Thursday, Aug. 6, Carriage Crossing residents in Troy, Ohio, were informed via the Troy Daily News that a proposed extra high water tower will be constructed in our neighborhood park. This water tower will stand 200 feet tall, require 1-1.5 acres during construction and may possibly also mandate a permanent access road from Corporate Drive. The .75 million gallons of water it will contain will service the areas south and west of Carriage Crossing.

While everyone can agree that a thriving community is nothing to complain about, the process used in making this decision has been questionable and concerning. Prior to the front page article, there had been no notification by the City of Troy to neighbors that would be affected by this tower. Furthermore, the Troy Park Board of Commissioners were the sole authority in voting on the recommendations from the City Engineer’s office. Two members of this appointed commission — A. Kappers and S. Phillips — listened to this presentation and essentially approved the Carriage Crossing site. This vote was taken despite the fact that there were still outstanding questions regarding the flood basin and capabilities of the retention pond in the proposed site. Other alternatives were looked over based on cost — a zoned industrial site in Kings Chapel claimed to have come with a $100k price tag. However, the city engineer has acknowledged that significant work will have to be done to the Carriage Crossing location to expand the retention basin and pond to accommodate a significantly-large water tower base and underground holding tanks. This work, of course, will come with a price tag that has yet to be calculated. This closed-door process is not the way our small community prides itself in operating and can make each and every Troy resident question the decision-making process of the officials we trust. We expect — and deserve — better transparency and access to information.

Environmental considerations have seemingly been glossed over in this process, as well. The proposed site sits in the middle of a retention basin that floods several times every year. This area has been designed to capture the run-off and has prevented flooding to the 116 houses in Carriage Crossing. Erecting a water tower, with underground water tanks, in an area that frequently has standing flood water makes little to no sense. According to the city engineer’s office, this situation is “still being analyzed.” Our home values are important- not only to us, but to the city, as we pay taxes according to our assessed values. A 200-foot water tower placed squarely in the our park will do very little to attract new home buyers and investment to this development. Simply put: a recreational park is not the appropriate location for an extra-high water tower.

Our park is used year-round for a variety of activities: pee-wee football, cheerleading, youth soccer, high school baseball and t-ball. The Carriage Crossing Park is also a popular spot for neighbors and citizens to come to fly kites, play with dogs and practice a variety of other sports. Every area of the park is used. Removing green space and available practice areas for our youth seems very contradicting to the intended purpose of a recreational park. In a time when athletic teams and community organizations can’t seem to find open fields, one very popular option will be further stripped away.

Our neighborhood stands united in asking that the Troy City Council deny funding for this project and to explore alternative site options for best use of our tax dollars, green space and economic investment.

— Chuck and Erin Adams

Tim and Katie DeLand

Nathan and Abigail Fischer

Joan Funderburg

Jeremy and Lori Westerheide

Stephanie Ratermann

Scott and Kerry Stanley