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Letter: Flower Mound charm quickly disappearing

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fm tree shameI have been a member of the Flower Mound community for over 35 years. When my family moved here we thought that we were moving to a well designed community (which it was by Marcus of Neiman-Marcus fame).

Marcus and his planners developed a new town plan that would allow for growth, but in a way that the beautiful, huge oak trees and the greenbelts would be kept.

There were to be greenbelts along the roadsides and nice parks in all the living areas. There were to be walking paths. The town was to be spectacular, different, and a place in which families could live in beauty and comfort. Yes, as I read in the “You Said It” portion of the Gazette, I am a voter who wanted (although it is too late now) as the person put it … a “keep Flower Mound a hick town, cow town” person. I do not consider what is being done and what has been done to this once beautiful community as keeping it a hick, cow town.

You see as a proud Texan, I was reared with a little space between my house and my neighbor’s house. I grew up being taught the beauty of trees, birds and other things of nature. I did not come from a part of the United States where everything had to be slammed together, where concrete replaced green areas, where shopping centers were built on the side of the road with little greenery, where apartments (which were not supposed to be in this community) were built right on the curb of the street.

Where a river walk is being built by first cutting down all the huge trees to be replaced by twigs (maybe), and where people expect the area where I live to be changed to look like the area from where they came. I realize that all that has happened in Flower Mound has been done in the name of more money and more money, not for the good of the people who moved here to have a beautiful suburban community. It saddens me.

I also realize that the council and the planning & zoning people will do what they want to whether a citizen wants it to happen or not. In this day and time in Flower Mound, a promise or the word of the leaders of Flower Mound means nothing, especially if money is involved. I believe that Flower Mound should not keep applying for the award of the Tree City of the United States and should quit bragging about receiving it. This community has cut down more beautiful, old oak trees (that could have been built around) in the name of progress than it can plant twig replacements in the next 50 years.

Yes, I am a resident that loves trees, greenery, a little open spacing and all the other aspects of nature. I am saddened that the growth of Flower Mound could not have been accomplished by staying closer to the original plan. It has been my town a long time. Sorrowfully, it is becoming just another bursting at the seams North Texas city that looks like any other city in this area.

Its charm is quickly disappearing.

Kathy Bettis
Flower Mound, TX

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  • clearthinker

    My wife and I agree. We moved to Flower Mound 3 years ago. Though we understand economic growth and “progress”. We are saddened by the amount of trees being cut down. More thought needs to be placed on this. Keep FM green and beautiful.

  • EG Barker

    Once the Smart Growth people got voted out, so did those ideas of managed growth. Thank you for writing this.

  • GoneNorth

    Well said! We moved to FM in 1990 and loved that the town was trying to preserve the smaller town feel while still growing. And we were happy a concerted effort was being made to preserve as many trees as possible. That charm has worn off and we’ve moved to a neighboring municipality that seems to care more about its citizens and the community feel than the enticement of new tax revenue from retail development and medical services. Newly planted “trash trees” are a far cry from those long-lived oaks. I am embarrassed that FM is letting this clear cutting happen – especially since they were last recognized as a “Tree City USA” as recently as 2014. Well that, and the town politics. But that’s an issue for current residents.

  • Terri Starns

    Great article! Growth just for the sake of growth is a cancer. Unfortunately when the mayor has questionable ties to the companies developing Flower Mound, what chance do every day citizens have in fighting the cancer?

  • WendyJK

    Well said and well written. I could not agree more! Thank you for that!

  • justagramma

    Find out who has allowed clear cutting of the irreplaceable post oaks, isolate them, and get rid of their influence. They are destroying the reason we all moved here.

  • Katie Lowe

    Thank you for writing what a lot of us are feeling these days!

  • Robert Meyer

    I can see both sides on this argument. Growth is inevitable, and we need the expanded tax base to pay for neat new things like the Senior Center, the Dog Park, park and rec improvements, etc. However, it is absolutely gut wrenching to watch scores of beautiful trees get clear cut, like we did a few days ago on Morris and 3040. I do believe the last council underestimated the painful, visceral reaction to that type of “progress”, and they paid for it politically in the last election.

    Bryant and Rountree are going to be fine councilmen. I was originally concerned with some of Rountree’s tactics during the election, but he is very effectively making the transition from an internet gadfly to a serious public official.

    However, the FMC love of Gelbman is what I find utterly mystifying. How can the liberals on FMC not be troubled by a guy who ran his last campaign on a platform to stop “the Islamization of America”, which he claimed to see in the fact that Muslims are living in our state and building mosques here? Not to mention some of the bizarre behavior in that campaign, as well as the FEC fine. And the secret recording during the FMTC campaign with the gotcha question about “what would you do if the Muslims asked to put a Sharia Law Court in FM”? Seriously … is it too much to ask the FMC liberals to have enough intellectual honesty to denounce that tactic? Even if you somehow believe he was uninvolved in the secret recording (which the facts from reputable citizens like Richard S. lead me to find hard to accept), the strange “gotcha” question alone, along with the past record for divisive, Islamaphobic rhetoric should give you pause. Lastly, the treatment of Nels Pearson, and the public berating was, IMHO, just simply despicable. JMO.

    • justagramma

      Islamophobia is like germaphobia. It seems to be overboard until you are impacted by an attack. It is not stupid to anticipate problems and be prepared.

  • Cathy Strathmann

    I agree 100%. Thank for taking the time to write what a lot of us are feeling!

  • Char Harris

    Excellent letter Kathy Bettis!

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