Dear Editor: Apart from the ad hominem attacks by my friend Diane and Commissioner Kerr, neither of them explained what, exactly, is wrong with grading the tops of dunes for views.
Consider if the City of Portland passed an ordinance that banned the removal of leaves on people’s front yards and front porches because petitioners from around the region thought the drifts looked “natural” and “wild,” and “my kids like to play in them.”
I think folks who lived on Northeast Klickitat, like Diana Turner, would object vigorously. She would probably have petitions up in Powell’s Books in no time.
The accumulation of sand up to 60 feet or more will not protect the Amos home from a tsunami, which will be deluged from the wave sweeping in from Ecola Creek. Higher dunes will not protect the homes on the Presidential streets, some of which will be reduced to piles of rubble even after a moderate tsunami.
Preventing dunes from being graded will not invite more wildlife, or enhance recreational opportunities. All it does is “stick it” to Breakers Point owners and other oceanfront homeowners because “they shouldn’t have built there in the first place,” ignoring the fact that some of the houses on Ocean Avenue are 100 years old.
Much of the dune-covered shoreland is private property, and some owners, like the Burmeister-Browns, spent a significant amount of money to buy the dunes along Ocean Avenue to prevent others from trying to develop it.
The Ocean Avenue dunes are like a large public park, maintained at no cost to the city. All the owners want to do is to take the tops off every so often to maintain their views.
The City Council apparently thinks they are not worthy of this consideration, and so they will grow back to the level they were in the early ‘90s when no one could see the ocean or horizon.
I suggest the council invite Dr. Allan back down to a meeting to ask him what are the downsides of grading, and whether it is a threat to our safety, the environment or any other aspect of our lives.