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Friday, February 15, 2013
Though it is true that much money has been spent to little effect at Explore Park, I must point out to Granger Macfarlane (“Don’t waste more tax dollars on Explore,” Feb. 8 letter), that there is a very nice multi-use trail system there on which I mountain bike frequently.
Of course, Explore Park as a site for the Mill Mountain Zoo was one of the first ideas trotted out 27 years ago, and one of the less horrific ones, but it came to no good end.
The provision of parks and recreational areas is a legitimate use of public funds. That use of resources often pays benefits that are hard to predict. “1,100 acres of cut-over timberland” becomes, in 27 years, a gem of a riverfront parcel with maturing hardwood forest.
A large percentage of new doctors whom I interview looking for jobs here are very interested in the recreational offerings of the community. Connecting Explore to the city via an extension of the wildly popular Roanoke River Greenway is not a far-fetched notion for promoting use of the park.
DR. DAVID HUNT