Let it not be said that our far Northwest state, Alaska, has a monopoly on Nowhere. While their “Bridge to Nowhere” garnered much national attention on the political and comedy circuit, here in Southeast Georgia, we’ve got a whole lot of nowhere. Not only have we got the state Department of Transportation doing a major expansion of a road to nowhere from two lanes to four, we’ve got a peninsula on our island (bet you didn’t know that it was possible to have a peninsula on an insula), sporting more than fifteen mapped roads that aren’t to be found on the ground.
First things first. Our friendly environmental watchdog, James Holland, has been much agitated for months, if not years, about the insults being visited by the Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT) on the wetlands and streams adjacent to what is commonly referred to as the Spur 25 or, more formally, the extension of the Golden Isles Parkway. Sometimes he flies over and sometimes he’s at ground level, but the annotated pictures Holland sends out to agitate all and sundry public officials are never pretty. One wonders if their imperturbability and resistance to correction is endemic. There’s no refuting the evidence. Some recent examples:
BMPs stands for Best Management Practices and can refer to silt fences, straw bales, rip-rap — anything that prevents storm events from eroding dirt and burying organisms in sediment.
Ecology — the political movement that seeks to protect the environment, especially from pollution (by people).
Would it be wrong to suggest that what we have here is a new form of segregation? How else to explain the splurge of investment in the hinterlands, while the City of Brunswick, Georgia, is left to languish in a sea of parking lots that nobody visits?
On the other hand, it does seem the population driven by exclusive interests is limited. They can build all the gated communities they want, but the people won’t come.
“If you build it, they will come.” Lots of wishful thinking going on. Most people don’t want to be locked up. Most don’t even want to settle down.
Monica Smith writes Hannah's Blog. Born in Germany, she came to the United States as a child, living first in California, then after an interval in Chile, in New York. Married to a retired professor at the University of Florida, where she lived for 17 years, she moved to St. Simons Island, Georgia, in 1993 and now divides her time between Georgia and New Hampshire. (New Hampshire, she says, is always interesting during a presidential election.) She and her husband have three children and five grandchildren. Ms. Smith says she "learned long ago that I am not a good team player when I got hired at the Library of Congress, fresh out of college with a degree in political science and proficiency in four foreign languages, to 'edit' library cards and informed my supervisor that if she was going to insist I punch the clock exactly on time, my productivity was going to fall from being the highest to being the same as everyone else's. The supervisor opted to assign me to another building where there was no time-clock. After I had the first of our three children, I decided a paycheck wasn't worth the hassle."