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Today's word on journalism

Monday, April 24, 2006

Dueling masters on words:

"He has never been known to use a word that might send a reader to the dictionary."

--William Faulkner, writer (1897-1962), on Ernest Hemingway, writer (1899-1961)

"Poor Faulkner. Does he really think big emotions come from big words?"

--Ernest Hemingway, writer (1899-1961), on William Faulkner, writer (1897-1962)

Meadow Woods plat gets green light in Hyde Park

By Brad Plothow

March 19, 2006 | HYDE PARK -- If Hyde Park's Planning and Zoning Commission had its way, all homes in the new Meadow Woods development would be built from the ground up -- no basements.

Actually, the Commission could have had its way but decided to not mandate a no-basement resolution on the development, which will add about 20 homes near 400 South and 200 West in Hyde Park. After about 20 minutes of deliberation, mostly on the basement-or-none issue, the Commission approved Meadow Woods' final plat by a 6-0 vote during the bi-weekly Commission meeting Wednesday.

The Commission's concerns stemmed from the fact that the subdivision sits atop a water table, and as such could be prone to flooding. Diverting water away from basements and into the sewer or street via drains or new water lines could still create problems with excess water bogging down the sewer or flooding the streets, said commissioner David James, who nevertheless didn't want to amend the city ordinance or pass a resolution to ban basement building.

"Just making a hard-and-fast resolution doesn't make sense," James said, who typically is wary of one-size-fits-all resolutions.

Stuart Howell was the most vocal commissioner on the topic. He agreed that a blanket no-basement resolution wasn't the best idea, as some lots will be more prone to flooding than others. But in making the motion to approve the plat, Howell added the caveat that the Commission would prefer that no basements be built.

"It serves the best interest of Hyde Park," Howell said. "There's no place to send the water except into the street."

The 10-acre plot where Meadow Woods will be built belongs to the Earl Daines Family Trust. It was rezoned to residential last November.

In other business, the Commission unanimously approved a license for the home-based construction business of Travis Checketts. The 6-0 vote came after a few minutes of discussion about home business guidelines, including keeping tools indoors and closing garages.

Commissioner Mark Lynne opened the floor for public comment on the Checketts item, but none of the roughly one dozen attendees spoke up, so Lynne closed the hearing.

Lynne noted in the meeting's opening minutes that a slew of business licenses have been approved in the past two weeks that haven't been picked up by the business owners.

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