Residents need way to access ‘wildlife utopia’

March 19, 2008 at 11:36 am  | Mobile Reader | Pring this storyPrint 

Imagine a neighborhood on the brink of wildlife utopia; a neighborhood brimming with so many outdoor opportunities it would make your head spin; a neighborhood surrounded by fishing, hunting, hiking, and biking trails that lead to some of the best outdoor adventures available in the country.

Is this neighborhood in the Colorado Rockies or the Florida Everglades?  No, it’s in St. Charles Parish – two in fact – in Norco and Luling. If we were in Colorado, we could bet our backpacks that such neighborhoods would have countless ways to access the virtual outdoor paradises adjacent to them.

The Bonnet Carre’ Spillway borders Norco neighborhoods along the western edge, beckoning residents to come and play – yet not one trail exists to get there.

On the west bank, Lulings’ Lakewood and Willowdale neighborhoods are less than a mile away from oak-lined Cypress Canal  to the southeast which empties into Lake Cataouachi and Salvador Wildlife Management Area, yet to get there, residents must drive to Pier 90 and take a 30-minute boat ride.

Why not have hiking trails, bike trails and even four-wheeler trails leading out of the Norco neighborhoods along Apple St. so these residents don’t have to load up their cars every time they want to ride, fish or hunt in the Spillway and Lake Pontchartrain? Why not have water access south of Willowridge so that residents could launch a small boat or Kayak to oak-lined Cypress canal?

If we embraced our wildlife areas instead of blocking them with levees and gates, our neighborhoods could enter a new dimension.

Our residents must endure the danger of living near coastal waters (not to mention mosquitoes). We should at least take advantage of the bounty knocking at our doorstep.

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