Friday, May 1, 2009

The Roanoker Magazine on Queen Darlene – Opens Old Wounds (Part One)

darelene2HOLY COW! First I saw the “tweet” by The Roanoker on Thursday night and then curiously took the link. Before I could pick my jaw up off the desk the phone rang … “have you seen …” said my Market building friend? Before they could finish I said OMG yes but I did not have the magazine to read it all. They proceeded to read me excerpts from the magazine. I hardly slept a wink wanting to get a copy the next day. But it was not out yet at the locations I usually find the magazine. The WHOLE article is not online. I have the full article courtesy of The Roanoker and permission to make it available so look for it in Part Two or Three. Better yet buy the magazine.

In the meantime I called publisher, Richard Wells, who was more than willing to give permission to use the cover as well as send me a pdf file of the entire article. I especially wanted to read what he said about the Countryside Golf Course fiasco. For those of you who are not familiar with me I am President of the Countryside Neighborhood Alliance a Roanoke City recognized community organization. We founded our organization in reaction to the planned demise of our beloved tranquil green golf course – this was the ONLY reason we moved and built around the golf course fairways in the first place. There were buyers of the patio homes that were still moving in when the city announced the purchase. What was so obvious to our community totally escaped city administrators and Council. The only reason there are higher-end homes built in this area in the first place is because of the green space the golf course offers. For the green space we are willing to put up with the noise of being in the airport runway 6 flight path. We woke up on May 3, 2005 to read the story in The Roanoke Times CLICK HERE.

Then Councilman Brian Wishneff and Sherman Lea came to my home the following week with then Director of  City Planning,  Brian Townsend in tow. Exclaimed both Wishneff and Lea upon arriving, “we didn’t know all this was here!” Roanoke City Council comprised of Mayor Harris, Lea, Wishneff, Cutler, Fitzpatrick, McDaniel, and Dowe had never even bothered to look at the property before voting to spend $4.1 million of taxpayers money.

I will add more of my first hand knowledge on the Countryside Golf Course portion of the article and reveal a few things I have written about but probably not read by many (Part II coming soon). In the meantime READ what The Roanoker said about the Countryside boondoggle HERE.

Through FOIA (Freedom of Information Act) requests I found that a study by the Lawrence Group Architects in 2002-2003 revealed conditions not conducive to development but were ignored see below:

The Lawrence Group Study of Countryside Golf Club 2002-2003

The Lawrence Group Study of Countryside Golf Club 2002-2003

Posted By Valerie Garner

Categories: Community, Finance

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