Prairie Plot to be Considered for Commercial Use

Proposed sale of forty acres

By Bill Fraccaro, Larry Cwik,
Pat Franzen and Chris Schwarz


     SMALLVILLE, USA - The town of Smallville will vote at next month's town council meeting on the proposed sale of forty acres of the existing 100-acre prairie west of the Otter River. Several companies have offered to develop the land for commercial or multifamily residential use.
     Smallville is interested in potential windfall profits that will be realized with the sale of the property. Due to a lack of industry in town, the tax base is relatively small limiting the town budgets for police, fire protection, schools, and maintenance, etc. The town is adjacent to a large industrial area, and most of the town's adult residents work in the factories. The average income of the residents is below the state average.
     While there are woodlands nearby and a river separating the east and west sides of town, pollution from external sources are a constant concern. Recently, a railroad car traveling through the town jumped the track and spilled ammonia over a three-block area. Neighbors reacted strongly, complaining about a general lack of concern for the environment.
     The Town Council will meet to hear the presentations and discuss the feasibility of the bids. Town Council members and the public will analyze the pros and cons of each bid before making a final decision. This decision could change the complexion of the community for many years to come. Some companies have already expressed interest in bidding:
- a power plant to provide 75% of the town's energy
- a family-oriented theme park
- a fossil fuel finishing factory
- a multifamily residential community providing affordable housing for up to 200 families
- a factory producing mufflers and chassis parts
- a mall with more than 100 stores
- a landfill that will become a recreation area when full
     Members of the Prairie Advisory Committee will also address the Town Council in an effort to save the entire prairie. PAC members have cataloged a variety of threatened and/or endangered species in the general area of the Smallville Prairie. Hoary puccoon, Franklin ground squirrel, white-fringed prairie orchid and Bombus griseocollis (the prairie bumblebee) are all possibly facing partial destruction.

1. Assemble a development team.
2. Select a company or the PAC to represent.
3. Prepare a development proposal following the bidding requirements.
4. Give a presentation at the Town Council meeting.