Oct 13, 2014

The Wildlands Conservancy Fakes Science

Chris Kocher, executive director of the Wildlands Conservancy, forgot to mention in a recent editorial that they will arrogantly fake and lie about the science, if it moves their agenda forward. Their current agenda is demolishing Wehr's Dam in South Whitehall's Covered Bridge Park, but lets examine their destruction in Allentown's Lehigh Parkway. I have a copy of the original 1940 rendering of the Robin Hood Bridge and Dam. This was the last WPA project in Allentown, and the city took great pride in it's design. The bridge piers and approach walls were designed to match and merge with the magnificent WPA stone walls, built in the park between 1935-37. The small dam, only 14 inches high, was no barrier to any self-respecting fish. The Wildlands testified in front of Allentown City Council that the dam was prohibiting fish migration with their canned speech about being experts on such things, never mind thousands of fisherman in the Parkway for 80 years. They also removed the Trout Nursery Dam, contributing to the kill of 2.000 fish this summer, but I digress. The firm hired to prepare the Covered Bridge Master Plan clearly states that removing the dam may very well increase flooding, as untold tons of silt change the downstream bed. The current firm, hired by Wildlands, calls that potential flooding a myth; Science to fit the agenda. Back to Lehigh Parkway. Although it is not my normal format to use two photographs in one blog post, the before and after views of Robin Hood Bridge are a tragedy. Before the Wildlands, the stone bridge piers raised photographically out of the water, a beautiful sight pleasing park goers for over 70years. After demolishing the dam, the Wildlands broke up the concrete and had the rubble placed around the bridge piers, despoiling the the vista forever.

top photograph by Tami Quigley


Anonymous said...

What your current post fails to mention, is that the concrete rubble that was placed at the base of the bridge piers was only done after you pointed out the dangers of removing the dam, which you noted was constructed along with the bridge.

My recollection is that Wildlands repeatedly gave assurances that there was no relation between the bridge piers and the dam, and that no harm would come to the bridge piers because of the dam removal.

Then, when the dam was hastily removed, the concrete rubble was placed around the piers.

michael molovinsky said...

@12:05, so, you believe that i'm responsible for despoiling the bridge, instead of the wildlands, even though they "hastily" removed the dam?

the wildlands had told city council that they performed scour analysis, and that there would be no problem. their on site hydrologist
confirmed that no such analysis was ever conducted, the WC had lied to council. if that rubble was placed there to protect the piers, which are upstream from the dam, or simply to avoid the expense of proper disposal, i don't know. at any rate they unnecessarily removed a dam, and ruined the visual appeal of the bridge.

with wehr's covered bridge being downstream, i would expect those piers to receive the same ugly treatment.

Anonymous said...

Think this group gave LaFarge Cement a award for environmental award, so even their awards are a joke.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Michael, what the hell is a "self-respecting fish"?

Anonymous said...

Looks like an illegal dump site. So much for conservation