Target: Stephen Lucas, Hearing Officer of Natural Resources Commission of Indiana
Goal: Halt plans to construct a multi-million dollar banquet hall on delicate sand dunes.
A fragile sand dune environment in a state park is being threatened by a plan to build an invasive banquet and conference hall on the delicate landscape. The multi-million dollar project will disrupt park goers, wildlife, and land. Furthermore, it could eventually create the need to bulldoze the dunes for extra parking. The public strongly opposes this project but a lack of public comment has led to the plan’s approval. The time is now to stop development in this unique state park.
Located in northwestern Indiana along the shore of Lake Michigan, Indiana Dunes State Park is one of the state’s most popular destinations. The sand dunes were created from the wind coming off Lake Michigan. The dunes boast a variety of vegetation, even forest, but the most coveted area of the park is the beautiful beach and shoreline of Lake Michigan. The development project hopes to restore the park’s 85-year-old pavilion while also tacking on a massive two-story, privately-run conference and banquet hall. The public approves of the restoration of the park’s beautiful vintage pavilion but the additional construction of the hall has alarmed park goers and outdoor enthusiasts.
Not only will land be destroyed for construction but wildlife could also be at risk. The conference and banquet hall will have large windows facing the lake. This could impact and confuse the millions of migrating bird species that pass through the park each year. Furthermore, the construction and operation of the conference and banquet hall will cause noise pollution, disrupting the quiet and natural life of the park. Many public members are also extremely concerned about the park’s integrity since the new construction will bring about the sale and consumption of alcohol on park premises.
The cost of the park’s expansive construction plan will be a hefty three to four million dollars. The few public meetings about this project have brought more opposition than approval. This public park should remain for the public and for nature. By signing this petition, you are demanding that the Department of Natural Resources stop the plan to build a conference and banquet hall in this coveted state park.
Dear Officer Lucas,
The Indiana Dunes State Park is one of Indiana’s most popular vacation destinations. The park boasts beautiful dunes that were naturally created by the winds coming off Lake Michigan. The Dunes State Park Expansion Project could cause harm to this delicate and unique landscape.
The restoration of the 85-year-old pavilion is a great project that will improve a decrepit part of the park. However, the construction of a privately-run conference and banquet hall does not consider the public’s opinion and the impact on local wildlife and land. This multi-million dollar project will increase traffic to the pristine area, possibly creating a need to bulldoze dunes and land to create additional parking. The hall’s proposed large windows could confuse migrating birds and the construction and operation of the hall will cause noise pollution. Additionally, the possibly of alcohol sales could transform the area’s integrity and disrupt the family-friendly atmosphere.
Please consider preserving the park instead of developing an already beautiful place. I am urging you to please halt the plans to build an expensive conference and banquet hall in Indiana Dunes State Park. It is time to protect and preserve Indiana’s natural places.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Drewski Mac