My new local, altie-newspaper, Nashville Scene cartoon is about city planning. The “NashvilleNext” plan has been in the works for a long time, and it is pretty good, placing new, high density developments in appropriate high traffic corridors (I know, you’re falling asleep). The problem is that Nashville is booming and developers are pushing to put their developments anywhere they can make a buck (like next door to me). Our pro-growth Metropolitan Planning Commission likes to let developers do whatever they want, and those developers, with their deep pockets, are hard to resist.
Here’s my second cartoon for the altie-weekly Nashville Scene. It is about a crazy 38 house development, with 35 foot high houses on tiny lots, planned to be built next door to me. This isn’t just a “nimby” (“not in my backyard”) issue, Nashville is growing like a weed, a stupid, unplanned weed, so I’m drawing a series on the topic. “Dale and Associates” is a former Nashville City Councilman, Roy Dale, who lobbies his old cronies to get big construction projects approved in town – a local version of the same nasty kind of lobbying we see in Washington when legislators retire to K Street.
I may get mad at something else and keep drawing local cartoons when this nimby battle is over, or I may pick at this scab for a while. I regret that local cartoons are so rare these days – local cartoons are the most fun and can have an impact, but they have to be drawn out of passion, rather than business sense.
Here’s a local Channel 2 news report on the neighborhood meeting at my house yesterday, to oppose a new housing development that is proposed for next door. You can see my rural, possibly soon to be urban, cabin and my big Steve Sack oil painting on the wall of my living room, along with a house full of angry neighbors.
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Nashville is growing like a weed, and though officials talk about planning, they really just approve every stupid proposal. I’m awakened to this by an absurd, huge development of 38 houses, each 35 feet tall, planned for the lot next door to my rural zoned, Nashville house.
In the coming weeks I’ll try pushing the limits on how rude I can be to local public servants – hey, its an altie-weekly, I should be able to get nasty. Here’s the first softball.