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Friday, February 22 , 2019, 3:15 am | Fair 46º


Letter to the Editor: Support the Botanic Garden

The garden is a wonderful resource for the community

It pains me to read letters to the editor in the Santa Barbara News-Press bashing the Santa Barbara Botanic Garden’s plans for renovation.

The garden has been nothing but a wonderful resource for this community — a place for families to stroll and enjoy different ecosystems, for kids to learn about California native plants and botany, for researchers to study plant species, and for all people to simply enjoy nature.

The Botanic Garden is just trying to update some of its old, antiquated facilities to be able to be an even better resource for our community. It needs more space for workers and basic maintenance, for storage of the rare plant species, and for research and education. When I go there, I can clearly see that its space is inadequate and the buildings are old. Why do neighbors continue to insist on giving the garden a tough time for such modest plans for upgrades?

The plan is to update existing facilities and add a few more that are necessary to continue current activities. The vast majority (more than 99 percent!) will continue to be open space, available for the public.

I’ve heard every critique from these neighbors, from fire safety to not liking the trails to be wheelchair accessible, but I have yet to hear a valid and sensible reason for why people oppose the garden’s plans.

I urge our community to look beyond the cries of a few vocal neighbors and support the garden’s efforts.

Elizabeth Musson
Santa Barbara

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