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Paradise Lost

by Bozemanite,

Have you heard this song?

It was written by local artists about our town. It makes me cry, and this project brings it to my mind. Of course, this isn't the only expansion project in Bozeman - there are just so many, but this one affects my family personally so I'll take the opportunity to state my opinion.

I have lived within blocks of Fowler for over 15 years. I've managed to be able to navigate the neighborhood just fine without the proposed thoroughfare, as have many others. Ferguson and Cottonwood both provide fairly direct routes around the area. The Fowler connector will allow people to move around this neighborhood faster, but is that what we want? Is that the type of growth mentality Bozeman residents value? I sure don't, and I personally know many, many others who live around here who feel angry, threatened, sad, powerless and helpless to fight for the lifestyle they invested in. I know several who are feeling completely trapped because they don't want a huge road going in their front or back yards, but they also can't afford to move due to Bozeman's current housing situation. I truly hope we as a community can value the our neighbor's comfort and well-being more than getting there faster.

I've added comments to your map and read the ones on there. They unfortunately don't reflect the number of concerns I've heard from the people I know who live around here. The stories seem to reflect more of that. I hope you take them to heart.

I was born in Bozeman and have lived here my entire life (44 years). I've seen things change quite a bit. As sad as some of what I've written may come across, I have embraced most of the change that has happened over the years. The one thing I hope we will not see change in Bozeman is our growth mentality or we will become just like the places everyone keeps moving here to escape. Its been heart-wrenching to be a shoulder to cry on as family member's see their investments and way of life threatened by something so seemingly simple as a road (especially when they have no hope of finding alternative housing in their hometown. Would you suddenly want a 5-lane highway in your front or backyard when your view for years has been trees? Please be part of the solution, not the problem!

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