Mark L. Johnson
Several TA Members have reported the destruction of older saguaros at the Saguaro Reserve Subdivision (173 homes) now being mass graded at the western end of Dove Mountain Boulevard. These beautiful saguaros have been living happily in the Sonoran Desert for 50-100 years and then in an instant a bulldozer pushes them over and leaves them in a pile.
Marana Municipal Code Chapter 17-11 Environmental Resource Preservation, Native Plant Protection and Landscape Requirements are the regulations related to native plant protection. We know these regulations are flawed. In fact, TA provided a Comment Letter [9/22/20] on the inadequate Natural Undisturbed Open Space (NUOS) provisions of Chapter 17-11. TA has requested Marana to investigate this mass grading activity and determine if the provisions of Title 17-11 were followed and to confirm if Lennar Homes is the developer.
According to Marana's Subdivision Activity Report there are 31,992 residential building lots approved by the Planning Commission that have not been platted. Assuming each lot requires 0.5 acres of land (including roads, open space, etc.) yields about 16,000 acres of land to be mass graded. Image the number of saguaros that are likely to be destroyed!
Folks now is the time to act. If we do not, our beautiful Sonoran Desert landscape will be gutted. TA is actively working with a group of community leaders to enlist candidates that are environmentally and water conscious for the four available Town Council seats in 2022. If you are interested in running, please contact Tom Hannagan ( firstname.lastname@example.org ).
Here is a collage of photos of the Saguaro Reserve mass grading taken from Dove Mountain Blvd this weekend: