Jaclyn Lopez: Stop destructive toll roads in their tracks

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no roads to ruin In: Jaclyn Lopez: Stop destructive toll roads in their tracks | Our Santa Fe River, Inc. (OSFR) | Protecting the Santa Fe River

From the beginning this shameful plan to make a few people rich has been fast tracked and shoved down the public’s throat.  Task force members were and continue to be subjected to insinuations and information omissions that take away some of their options.

No Build and No Action options are still on the table and we must insist on this to prevent devastating development which would follow the new corridors.  What will Galvano, Thomas Peterffy and cronies gain from this?  It must be exposed.

Read the complete article here in the Herald Tribune.

Comments by OSFR historian Jim Tatum.
– A river is like a life: once taken,
it cannot be brought back © Jim Tatum



jacklyn lopez
jaclyn lopez

The new state development plan to fuel sprawl is known as M-CORES, for Multi-use Corridors of Regional Economic Significance.

But a growing number of Floridians have more accurately dubbed it “Roads to Ruin.”

It was passed by the Legislature to fast-track the construction of three massive new toll roads that will cut down the spine of Florida and open some of the few rural, wild spaces left in the state to additional, unsustainable sprawl.

The plan’s pledge that amid the population and traffic increases resulting from this development boondoggle the state will somehow also  protect and even enhance wildlife corridors, is an absurd contradiction.

The truth is that this is just the latest chapter in the story of the unchecked sprawl that continues to wipe out Florida’s unique sub-tropical ecosystems and the wildlife that depend on them.

But it doesn’t have to be this way.

The No Roads to Ruin coalition of 67 businesses and organizations across the state, is working to stop the destructive toll roads plan.

This year, three separate task forces will continue to meet every other month to develop a report to deliver to the state Legislature in October.

The report will recommend toll road routes and construction models that minimize the great harm these highways will do to Florida panthers and bears.

But the only real solution for a healthy Florida moving forward — one that does a better job of addressing the needs of not only people, but wildlife — is not to build these destructive roads in the first place.

Therefore, the coalition is educating and advocating for the final reports in October to recommend “No Build.” To learn more about the coalition check the Facebook page @noroadstoruin.

You can also voice your support for a “No Build” option by emailing the Florida Department of Transportation at FDOT.Listens@dot.state.fl.us.

Gov. Ron DeSantis should use 2020 as a turning point in his governorship and prove that he cares about Florida’s iconic species.

Because he controls the purse strings for these destructive toll roads he can stop them in their tracks.

It’s up to Floridians everywhere to make sure he hears your voices and does just that.

Florida native Jaclyn Lopez is the Center for Biological Diversity’s Florida director

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