This Letter to the Editor appeared in the March 5, 2018 Reading Eagle website.
Letter: Warehouses pose risk for sensitive region
Environmental groups appreciative of municipal leaders’ efforts in northern Berks.
The Kittatinny Ridge, stretching over 185 miles, is a treasure – a globally significant migration corridor for raptors and other birds, oasis of forested public land for hiking and hunting, local economic engine and source for headwater streams and drinking water.
On behalf of tens of thousands of our members who count on a healthy ridge and the surrounding land, I thank the Tilden Township supervisors for rejecting a proposal for a 1.2 million-square-foot warehouse on a 120-acre farm. About 770 trucks would visit the warehouse daily, dramatically impacting the area.
We also thank Greenwich Township for rejecting a warehouse proposed for the Krumsville area in December.
Berks County is not alone regarding warehouse proposals of such size and impact. Drive Interstate 78 and other major arteries and witness sprawling industrial concrete structures sprouting from fertile farmland.
It is imperative that state, county and municipal officials, developers and conservationists have a meaningful conversation, crafting policies about appropriate siting, warehouse concentration and standards to mitigate the environmental impact of these structures to address building color, outdoor lighting, noise abatement and flood management.
It is our hope that a candid discussion about the merits and drawbacks of this industry will generate more thoughtful and responsible planning with respect to the community, land and water.
Hawk Mountain Sanctuary joins Audubon PA and the Appalachian Trail Conservancy in commending the townships for their leadership on this issue, and we support the residents’ determination to maintain their way of life and stewardship of the Kittatinny Ridge.
President, Hawk Mountain Sanctuary, Albany Township