Guest Op-Ed: We Must Protect Our Neighborhoods Not Developer Profits

By Councilor Fred Capone

Growth and development are good for a community. However, growth and development should be implemented in a controlled manner, after careful planning, to ensure that it is truly beneficial to the community.  If you look around our city you see two- and three-family properties converted into six and eight-plus unit structures.  You see buildings being constructed in neighborhoods that tower over the surrounding properties.  An even closer look reveals that some of these developers have multiple projects in our city.  These large-scale buildings do not blend with their surroundings, and impair or completely block sunlight from reaching smaller structures. 

It is imperative that we protect the integrity of our neighborhoods.  We cannot continue to build excessively on every square inch of space.  The current unlimited expansion is overburdening our City’s infrastructure, causing overcrowding and resulting in unnecessary congestion.  Additionally, this uncontrolled growth further frustrates our City’s overloaded school system. 

Recently, while speaking with a resident, I noticed a backhoe working on top of a pile of dirt that was at level height with her backyard fence.  The fence was less than 20 feet from her house.  No protective barrier was present. Dirt and dust were allowed to float into her yard, garden, and up against her property.  When construction is completed, the rear portion of her property may never see direct sunlight again.  Our discussion brought tears to her eyes and she asked how this was possible.  We, as a community, need to reconsider how we choose to expand and grow to ensure that the growth benefits all of us and not just developers. 

As Mayor, I will prioritize the well-being of our residents over developer profits.  The current unlimited growth will shift to construction projects that both enhance our city and protect the integrity of our neighborhoods. 

This is just one change I would like to implement if elected mayor.  For other areas of concern or ideas, please visit my webpage at

Fred Capone is a City Councilor, and a candidate for mayor.

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