Protect Adirondacks from eyesores

I write in response to your article “Losing the high ground” [September/October]. During my twenty-six-year career in the Air Force, which included three wonderful years at Plattsburgh Air Force base in the late 1980s, I have gotten long looks at both the good and bad in terms of land-use practices. I still consider—even after two decades in Pennsylvania—the Adirondacks to be my real home, and it is the wide-open, wild (and largely blight-free) landscape that makes the region so attractive to me.
I remember well the first time I saw the mansion from atop the summit of Baxter Mountain, perhaps just a year or two after it was built. My initial reaction was, “There goes the neighborhood.” I haven’t changed my thinking since.
On our many return visits to the Adirondacks since heading south, we’ve always come home with many lessons to share here regarding the visual and spiritual health of the public realm. In Pennsylvania, where public land is mostly a dream, not a reality, we see on a daily basis the blight, sprawl, trophy homes, mansions on hills, and McMansions that continue to pave over the natural land.
Don’t let this happen to the Adirondacks. Please.
Alan C. Gregory, Conyngham, PA

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