To the Editor:

Mr. Brown says he wants to be neighborly by building a 275 private-member sports facility in our backyard. This neighborly gesture is going to forever change the character, integrity and value of our homes and our neighborhood. He recently hired a PR firm to distract us from the facts.

Commercial development spillover does have negative effects on residential values. The obvious impacts causing home values to suffer are traffic, noise pollution, light pollution, size of the commercial project and aesthetics. The not so obvious are our right to the quiet enjoyment of our homes, the threat to our wells, impact on our inland wetlands (as we are all surrounded by wetlands).

For most of us, our homes are the single most important investment we make. The Winter Club threatens that for many families. Maybe not yours today, but this is the fourth time this year that neighborhoods have had to defend themselves against special permit applications.

This is not a non-profit venture. It is not a gift to the town. It is a paid membership club. Anyone from any town willing to pay can be a member. For those families who love hockey let’s support the hockey rink we already have. We know they are local. We know they have been paying taxes to the town for years and we know they employ locals.

Tuesday, Sept. 19, was an important meeting at East Ridge Middle School auditorium with the Planning and Zoning Commission. This was the hearing for the amendment to remove private clubs from special permit uses in residential zones. We need to help each other protect our homes and neighborhoods from large commercial projects cramming into small residential neighborhoods.

Melissa Brazill

Old South Salem Road, Sept. 14