There has been much talk these past few weeks regarding a number of proposed housing developments around town that has awakened a passion for disagreement, both on social media, the mainstream press and in our town government.
Some have drawn lines in the sand over potential developments on Reservoir Avenue, Oakview Drive, and Westfield’s Main Street mixed-use proposal. With other previously planned commercial/retail projects making their way through the development and zoning process for some time we should keep in mind that Trumbull is nearly 98% developed; and setting aside our beautiful parks, open space, nationally recognized golf course and beautiful Pequannock River trail, we should not lose sight that the cost of living for us as residents rise year after year.
We rightfully fight to protect the integrity of our education budget and seek to provide funds to properly manage a municipality; so we must ask ourselves if not these then what? I am not advocating any of the proposals before P&Z be approved in their current form; I am hopeful that we will maintain an open mind to the kinds of residential living those seeking out towns like ours are attracted to. Whether it is the single family home, the established condominiums on Main Street or White Plains Road and others, the fact of the matter is a new generation is looking for a different living experience, one where the options of entertainment, recreation, shopping, and lifestyle suit their needs; ones which may be different than yours or mine.
We should also recognize that another generation loves their hometown just as much after the nest is emptied but don’t want to maintain the space they have, thus also looking for a more enticing living experience while remaining residents and contributing to the fabric of our community.
The civil discourse over housing is one that is necessary for Trumbull to grow our tax base. If we don’t then we will be creating a living experience like smaller communities who choose to fully balance their education and town-wide budgets solely on the backs of our current residents. I don’t want that to happen, do you?