Time to update ITT's vision, with today's numbers
To know where we're going, we must know where we came from. Palm Coast was originally designed and built by ITT in the late 1960s. Gasoline was 36 cents per gallon back then, and the entire population of Flagler County was 4,454.
ITT executives planned a community based upon the living capacities and capabilities of that time. Home size, electricity, water, sewer, the PEP system, garbage, numbers of vehicles and vehicle use — the necessities of community living back then were what went into the Palm Coast equation.
These demographics set at 1960s to 1970s values seemed to fit, and the system worked.
As times changed, the homes got bigger, electric use skyrocketed with all our new gadgets, automobile use and traffic way up, water and sewer use up, garbage amounts doubled and more, and drainage, well, we have been hearing from residents where that stands.
This has been the Florida way of building a city: “Build it and they will come." The ITT plan was all nice, bundled up, and running while the population stayed at a low growth rate. Now, we have about 125,000 residents, some say halfway to a big city of 250,000.
Rather than focusing on big city Palm Coast, we need critical attention right now by everybody to the present Palm Coast. We cannot go forward to the dream of a Palm Coast with 250,000 or more residents until the now Palm Coast is in the condition ITT or anybody said it would be in their grand design at this stage of the game. It may be time to pause, reconsider, and reassess the ITT model for Palm Coast. Is it working and is it the best way for us to go forward in the 21st century?
The question I have is can this community continue this rate of breakneck growth to 250,000 or more residents with the problems we are having right now at half that number without experiencing a huge hit on current residents’ quality of life?
This is where we’ve been, I hope we know where we are going.
Jeffery C. Seib
Why publish such a disparaging letter?
I noted with alarm a letter to the editor in last week's Observer in which the writer critiqued previous coverage by the Observer of a local women's rights/pro-choice rally. The writer objected to the reporting, claiming the rally participants, Democrats, and seemingly the Observer, as well, were euphemistically promoting “killing babies.” The writer went further with some disparaging attempts to conflate “undesirable” immigrants with pro-choice philosophy.
I’m surprised that the Observer would publish such an inflammatory letter by a writer who clearly confuses pro-choice stances with infanticide, which abortion very definitely is not … and would insert some biased pejorative immigration remarks, bereft of reason, trying to tie that somehow with the pro-choice event.
Given the OK to publish this kind of letter, would the Observer now be willing to publish a letter contending that draconian anti-abortion laws and stances are akin to dystopian “forced birth” and firmly places the blame for stripping away women's health care rights and forcing women to give birth on the unsettling resurgence of Christian Nationalism embraced by Republicans?
Editor's Note: The Observer does not have a stance on abortion rights; the newspaper's goal is to build bridges of understanding by helping one group of residents understand how an opposing group thinks and feels. Therefore, your letter is a welcome addition. I agree that the previous letter writer's use of the word "undesirable" with reference to immigrants is offensive and should never have been published. Thanks for your contribution. We intend to publish all letters of general interest about local issues. Sincerely, Brian McMillan, publisher. Email [email protected].