Nowhere in "All Aboard" do I find concern about what increased rail will do to small rural communities like mine (HCN, 2/02/09). We are facing a proposed railroad yard, the ninth largest in the nation, smack across from a state park and a new affordable housing development, which will destroy the upper Santa Cruz Valley, the last undeveloped part of the Sonoran Desert. For those us who built here years ago hoping to enjoy peace, quiet and an undisturbed environment, this is appalling. Not all of us live in cities and want to experience nature through glass windows as we speed by. Union Pacific officials have not publicized required public meetings in our local community, and are fighting new state-required public hearings, saying they are not required by federal law. The purported new jobs for locals is also a non-starter –– 80 locally will be filled by current Tucson employees, who will commute by car to work.
Please consider the impact on local communities when you tout the benefits of increased commuter rail –– some of us want to rebuild communities rather than speed out of them.