There are, apparently, approximately 1 shopping center of some description for every 5600 residents in Prince George’s County. (161 centers 890,000 residents) Development plans call for the addition of at least three more of various sizes near Crain Corner in Upper Marlboro. Some of these are in the plan and to some extent; one is a gross violation of the general plan for Prince George’s County. Local proximate residents are told that we are under served. We are also told that our two local, showing signs of age shopping centers do not fit the new standards of strip mall quality. So we are to infer that we should discard the old centers, not rehabilitate them, and develop three new ones. This of course would give us five, plus Home Depot, two or so car dealerships and a variety of convenience stores. But we are under served.
On the environmental side, we have exactly one river, which cannot be replaced, and one nominee for Historic National Register recognition and should residents want it, Historic District status which will be irrevocably lost if the strip mall goes forward. And the open space ecosystem services which will be paved and built over cannot be recovered at a cost anyone would be willing to pay. We who did not ask will receive as a benefit of the proposed development at Crain Corner an influx of outside traffic we do not want, rural property facing a 40 foot buffer of invasive species hiding parking lots which we are told will not lower the value of our properties. Ever wonder why there are so few strip malls on River Road in Potomac? Could it be because they do not bring value to the quality of life?
Of course a few of us will profit handsomely from the sale of land, but because the rest of us were not prescient enough to also file to destroy this section of the rural tier near to the Patuxent River, the winners will be fewer then the economic losers. This is the free market we are told; if so let us also rezone our land, and move away too, leaving future generations with our dilapidated, out-of-date shopping mall, our gift to our children, concrete and environmental degradation. We only know what we have lost when we look around and it is no longer there.
An old Cherokee is teaching his grandson about life. "A fight is going on inside me," he said to the boy.
"It is a terrible fight and it is between two wolves. One is evil—he is anger, envy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego." He continued, "The other is good—he is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion, and faith. The same fight is going on inside you—and inside every other person, too."
The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked his grandfather, "Which wolf will win?"
The old Cherokee simply replied, "The one you feed."
First People - The Legends. Cherokee Legend of Two Wolves. November 16, 2004. [accessed April 7, 2012].