To the Editor:

I grew up right by Hollydale Golf Course. As a kid, my family would walk our dog at the high school. My sister and I spent years running and skiing through the woods on high school sports teams. When those woods were decimated, I was horrified at the loss of a place where kids could just be kids. Take it from someone who grew up loving her local parks – the proposed development of Hollydale Golf Course is woefully shortsighted. We don’t need a golf course, but we need green space.

Developments like the one proposed lead residents to spend their free time outside Plymouth. Next door to us, Wayzata fosters a community. It has more “missing middle” housing that Plymouth lacks, where young families can grow up and older adults can retire together. It’s a city that grew prior to the development of highways, which led to the beloved, walkable city center. The city also continually invests in improvement, like the Lake Effect development which will encourage biking, improve accessibility, and restore our native ecosystem.

Plymouth’s own 2040 plan advocates for more parks and identifies desired facilities, like a sculpture garden, off-road biking area and splash pad. Why should this proposed project subvert our plan? This developer deserves no special treatment. We need to augment our green spaces, not strip them from residents.

It’s too late to avoid the destruction of the Wayzata High School woods that I grew up exploring. It’s not too late to do the right thing about Hollydale Golf Course. If development is truly unavoidable, then we can rezone a small portion of the acreage to allow for multi-family homes rather than more single-family residences. There is already a wonderful park across the street. Expand it. Make a community garden, a boardwalk through a prairie, or any special facilities identified in the 2040 plan. Listen to current Plymouth residents who clearly don’t want this development. We need to do the right thing and ensure the kids here grow up in a community that encourages them to be active and experience our state’s natural wonders.

Kayla Seikkula

Plymouth

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