Letter: Otis Pike exit would disrupt woods, wetlands

Posted

To the editor:

We are writing to register our opposition to a proposed Massachusetts Turnpike interchange on Algerie Road in Otis.

We are new residents to the region, having downsized from a much larger, busier town commutable to offices in Boston and Providence, R.I. Since relocating to Becket just eight months ago, we have enjoyed discovering the quiet, friendly, slower-paced life that, perhaps, other folks in this region may be taking for granted. We live very close to Bonny Rigg Hill Road, where deer, bears and even moose have been seen crossing as they follow Walker Brook. Our rural roads pass through environmentally sensitive woods and wetlands that include vernal pools certified by MassWildlife's Natural Heritage and Endangered Species Program. Conservatively, doubling or tripling the volume of cars and trucks — and the associated speeds of through traffic — would absolutely disrupt the calm, sylvan nature of our neighborhood, to say the least.

The health of our woods and wetlands would be threatened by placing access to the interstate highway in the remote forests of our neighboring town of Otis.

Here in Becket, there are no malls or shopping centers. That is precisely why we — and, we presume, other folks — settle here: for the quiet, rural nature this region affords. We don't need to commute, but our woods, lakes and wildlife need to be preserved. Once they are disrupted by development, the damage can not be reversed.

Please consider this before deciding where to locate a Mass Pike interchange.

Dave and Kathy Dickinson,

Becket

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