A Shrinking Island

October 16, 2008
Call me claustrophobic, but living on Long Island nowadays is becoming more and more like living in a crowded elevator: the free space is running out and your neighbor’s nose is starting to be pressed closer and closer to your own. Overdevelopment is ruining everything that was once good on this island, from the environment to the educational system. Unfortunately, if this trend continues, there will be little left to distinguish Montauk from Manhattan.

Granted people need a place to live. It’s a well known fact that Long Island’s population has exploded over the course of the past century, creating new socioeconomic problems. But can we really afford to continue to exacerbate this problem by destroying what little untouched land is left and replacing it with million-dollar housing complexes? Already, the area’s once thriving farm industry has all but disappeared as local growers continue to be bought out by real estate companies or forced to move because of soaring property taxes. The influx of new families has swollen schools to beyond capacity, making it more difficult for teachers to give students the attention they need to succeed in our ultra-competitive world. Rush hour takes on a whole new meaning when one sees the horror of 5 o’clock traffic on the L.I.E.

In short, I’m tired of seeing the open spaces of my beloved island being hacked to pieces and fenced in without a care in the world. Call it necessity or not, our island is shrinking and the results are devastating.

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