Wednesday, November 21, 2012

GO APE Discovered on County Council Agenda

County residents are voicing surprise about a GoApe! contract being an agenda item on last night's St. Louis County Council meeting, after a heated exchange of public concerns just occurred about the matter Saturday.

Approximately 55 interested and concerned St. Louis County residents—and even at least one from Illinois—attended an informational meeting Saturday at Greensfelder Park in Wildwood regarding a proposed treetop park being considered to be erected there.
Reactions from attendees Saturday were intense and aimed at the lack of public notification and engagement about what they perceived to be a "game-changer" regarding a more remote public park traditionally focused on equestrian, bicycling and hiking use. St. Louis County Parks Acting Director Tom Ott promised Saturday that communications would improve. In fact, a signup list was provided to ensure county employees could notify directly those interested in future meetings about the topic. County staffers answered a variety of questions Saturday, and took time to show attendees the actual ravine proposed to be where the treetop park would go.

To the surprise of most Wildwood residents on Wednesday morning, however, the contract the county would enter into with the private company, GoApe!, that would build the proposed treetop park was discovered to be on the agenda of the St. Louis County Council meeting held last night. That act alone prompted a flurry of emails, phone calls and Facebook conversations about what some residents are calling "secretive" and "non-inclusive" county activities on Wednesday.

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