City officials in Urbandale Iowa have done something that in my opinion, is just plain stupid!
The Caldbecks home backs onto a city owned pond & park area. Disappointed in the lack of appropriate care of the park area the Caldbecks called the parks and recreation director and asked if they could do the upkeep of the park as the city wasn’t doing a good job of maintaining it. That was 5 years ago.
Since then the Caldbecks have invested $50,000 into improving the area. Planting 21 trees, loads of flowers and even installing a few rock beds. Other neighbors joined in and planted trees as well. What’s wrong with that? They spent their own funds, improved and beautified the area & asked for nothing in return.
The city however is removing all of it, yes all of it! Why? Because the Caldbecks did not have written permission from the city. So the city is now going to pay to have the trees, flowers & rock beds removed resulting in the area returning to the less than pristine state it was in before the Caldbecks & their neighbors took it over.
Ok, so I get that city officials can’t just let people go all willy nilly wherever they choose to on city owned property, but really, removing it? This is a designated park area after all, it’s not like the city is planning to put in a parking lot or something! The city is lucky to have residents who care enough about where they live to invest their own money, time and love into beautifying and maintaining a city park & the city thanks them by spending tax dollars on getting rid of it all?
Come on Urbandale officials, use your heads! There are occasions where exceptions to the rule actually make sense and this is one of them! Oh, and you know what the Mayor said when questioned by ABC5 reporter Katie Eastman? “This issue is not worthy of comment”. How disgraceful! Urbandale city officials should be ashamed of themselves.
You can view the newscast here.