Greenhouse or no greenhouse, that is the question facing Midway City officials |

Greenhouse or no greenhouse, that is the question facing Midway City officials

Those of us living in Midway are reminded each day that we are truly living in paradise. Each morning when I look up at the Wasatch Mountains, I say to myself, "The hills are alive with the sound of music." The surrounding hills and dales exude a natural rural tranquility that is second to none. There are few places in this world that can still escape the pitfalls of urban noise, pollution, and uncontrollable growth.

Unfortunately, the Midway city officials are attempting to permanently change the beautiful landscape of Midway, to allow a commercialized greenhouse complex to be built on RA-1-43 zone acreage at the northern end of the city adjacent to the Wasatch Mountain State Golf Course and surrounding homes. In order to do this, they must first redefine the language in the city’s Land Use Code; specifically the Code Text Amendment of Title 16.2.

The Midway Planning Commission members have been very careful to state that this is not a rezoning effort, but rather a much-needed rephrasing of the city codes to more specifically define the term "agriculture" to include the raising of plants and animals. The definition is to become more detailed regarding agriculture, agricultural uses, and those uses that are governed and regulated by the city.

The main question that becomes paramount in the minds of most Midway residents is, "Why are the mayor and the other city officials so passionate in their effort to bring a commercialized, industrial greenhouse complex into the city? Is there an alternative motive underlining the reason for this action by the city officials? Or is it just an innocent, altruistic effort on the part of the mayor and city officials to simply further business opportunities, which will ultimately bring additional revenue to the city? At this point there is certainly not enough informational data to make any accusations, pro or con, regarding this issue. Time and further study become the greatest ally in decision-making, particularly at this level of government.

Most Midway residents agree that from an ecological standpoint, greenhouses are most beneficial to the environment. Most will also agree that, if constructed individually on private property, the greenhouse should be on a small scale, so as not to be obtrusive to the surrounding neighborhood. Conversely, it is a general consensus that a commercialized industrial greenhouse complex which includes aquaponics (a symbiotic cultivation of plants and animals in a recirculating environment), aquaculture (the controlled cultivation of aquatic animals) and hydroponics (the cultivation of plants in a nutrient-rich solution rather than soil) is NOT the kind of business opportunities that Midway City officials should be entertaining.

It is our hope that after more study, the city officials will not only adhere to sound governmental practice, but will come to realize that they have taken an oath to serve the will of the people and do what is best for the general welfare of all the citizens, not just a few.

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