Ascendigo’s plans don’t mesh with ruralness of Missouri Heights

I was born and raised in this valley. My parents were among the first to move downvalley in the early ’70s. I moved back to the valley and purchased my home in Missouri Heights in 2014.

Recently, it came to my attention the Ascendigo Autistic Services group in Carbondale has applied for a permit to build an almost 50,000-square-foot facility in the middle of our rural neighborhood. This is not OK. This is a rural community composed of single-family homes and ranches. Commercial enterprises have no place in the middle of this quiet neighborhood.

Ascendigo has applied to build structures rivaling the size of a Wal-Mart Supercenter, permanently housing more than 100 people and guests, restaurant food services, conference centers, barns, stables, caretaker cottages, parking lot for 100-plus cars. There is even a man-made lake!

Their development would propose additional 450 cars a day added to our two rural dirt roads. This is a 50% increase on our roads! Fifty percent. In addition to an already super scarce water supply (did I mention they are building a lake?) and the dreaded fire threat, adding this kind of drain to our limited resources up here is not acceptable.

Let me be clear: Ascendigo is a worthwhile enterprise and what it does for autistic children is phenomenal. But that is not the subject here. In a time when corporate America has essentially taken over every corner of our country, we have to stand up to this commercial corporate bulling. Missouri heights is zoned as residential; rules don’t change just cuz they want them to.

Ascendigo’s plans do not fit with the rural environment of Missouri heights. There are plenty of places on the valley floor to accommodate such an enterprise.

Chase Carter

Missouri Heights/Carbondale