Letter: Will Uplands Development Lead To More Scenes Like This?

Photo: A photo by Stephanie Liu of a suspected coyote roaming in her backyard. 

To the Editor:

[This letter was a comment on the town issuing a building permit for the 299-unit apartment complex in Belmont Uplands]

A couple of days ago, I saw this very emaciated coyote walking in my backyard and then turned to Little Pond. I have to admit that I was so tempted to bring some food for him as I don’t think he can survive very long. But it’s illegal and it’ll create the impression that backyards are bountiful feeding areas. Can we blame them when we take away their habitats?

I guess this is the pattern we are facing after losing our forest and their sanctuary. It’s so sad. Coyotes are generally nocturnal, but they do hunt during the day when they are hungry. The town should issue warning for residents to keep their children and pets indoors.

Stephanie Liu

Oliver Road


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  1. Allison Lenk - 145 Sherman St. says

    As an animal lover, it’s disturbing to have ongoing evidence of the far-reaching impact that this loss of habitat is having, and will continue to have, on the myriad species that inhabit the Uplands/former Silver Maple Forest. In addition, present and future Belmont residents’ property, and quality of life, will be forever impacted by the decision to issue a building permit to an out-of-state developer who is only seeking profit – abusing the 40B (“Affordable Housing”) law to build in the what was once referred to as “The Great Swamp”, whose clay soil and beautiful silver maple trees provided crucial flood absorption for the waters descending from Belmont Hill and Arlington Heights. While 40B may have allowed this travesty, our town officials, the two most recently-elected who publicly stated support for preserving the Uplands during their campaigns, have since only stated they they’re “working on things ‘behind the scenes'” and they’ve chosen to follow advice of town council in using outdated flood data, rather than the recently updated, and far more alarming data that is now available. Meanwhile, the trees have been cut down, and a building permit issued, while the same officials are asking for an override vote to raise our taxes further… perhaps to add a third floor to the Winn Brook School? Where are the children living in the 299 unit development going to go to school? Finally, as a long-term Belmont resident, I’ve witnessed the increase in traffic since my childhood, and can only guess how the development will exacerbate the problem. For over a decade now, many caring and committed Belmont, Cambridge, Arlington and other communities’ residents have raised these myriad concerns related to the potential development in the Uplands. I wish our town officials had been as vigilant in caring for all living creatures in our shared community. .

    • Allison Lenk - 145 Sherman St. says

      In my comment earlier today, I should have stated that town officials are using outdated RAINFALL data, not flood data.

    • Allison Lenk - 145 Sherman St. says

      In the earlier 3/08/15 email, I should have stated “outdated RAINFALL data”, not “flood data”.
      Also, meant Town Counsel, not Council.

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