An Open Letter to City Hall | The Source Weekly - Bend, Oregon

An Open Letter to City Hall

I am a residing, taxpaying and voting citizen that is considered to be a contributing and frugal member of society. I was instrumental in helping implement traffic circles in Bend Park, specifically the intersections of NE Hawthorne and 9th and 10 Streets. During the planning of these small circles, it was agreed upon that the neighbors would participate in the upkeep and maintenance of the landscaping.

I have spoken with, on more than one occasion, the city street staff about my role in helping to maintain these circles. On the first occasion, the city had come out and pulled all the flowers that were growing. A staff member said it contributed to the litter that had accumulated in the circles (of which I clean daily). On the second occasion, another staff member attributed the pulling of all the flowers to "new and overzealous employees" that were not aware of what to pull and what to leave. This conversation is what concerns me the most. The staff and I agreed that the neighbors of these circles would be responsible for the landscape, which was the original agreement when the traffic circles were created, and that the city "would leave them alone."

Imagine my utter disgust when I found, upon returning from a 10-day vacation, that all the mature landscaping had been pulled and replaced by dirt. Surely your staff noticed what they were doing as they pulled all the landscaping and, perhaps, thought for a moment that they were destroying a flower garden that had been lovingly tended. I have spent the past 3-plus years adding compost, water and seedlings to the circles, assured that the city was holding me responsible for maintaining them. I am sickened by the fact that I trusted the staff and had created a beautiful and mature landscaped traffic circle, only to be destroyed by city personnel in a matter of minutes. This circle had, in addition to plantings the city originally placed, mature sedum, flax, bachelor buttons, sunflowers and other wildflowers. I have spent countless hours tending to the circle in order to create a more beautiful neighborhood. In fact, on numerous occasions, neighbors and motorists alike have complimented me on the beauty of the flowers.

I am so sickened by what you have done! As a concerned citizen that is trying to beautify the city, it baffles me as to why you would spend money to destroy something that was of no cost to the city. ZILCH - ZERO COST! I anxiously await your rationale regarding this travesty.

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