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Hotel project will enhance Coquille Point area | Opinion

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We have seen many changes for good and for ill in Bandon since we first purchased property in 1988, and were very involved in the town for the 16 years we lived there until moving to Portland seven years ago. (Adrienne was a business owner and city councilor; Steve was a founding member and officer of the Bandon Dunes Golf Club, Chamber of Commerce president and the reserve sergeant on the Bandon Police Department.) The pull Bandon still exerts is seen in our regular visits to what will always be our adopted “home town.”

It is important that all voices be heard in making decisions that affect the future of the town and that certainly seems to be happening with the proposal now pending for Coquille Point. Our thanks and congratulations to folks on both sides of the issue who have stated their positions clearly. Now it’s time to decide.

The Steere proposal would replace a monstrosity with an excellent lodging facility and café that would serve not only visitors but all of Bandon and those who came to visit the wildlife refuge, and locals and visitors alike out for a bike ride.

As we understand it, the proposed project provides even more off-street parking than required, the property owners will work with both the city and the US Fish & Wildlife Service to make the hotel a model of environmental responsibility, and the project will enhance, not detract from, the beauty and accessibility of Coquille Point.

The major parties behind this application are Bandon Dunes owner Mike Keiser and family, who not only built a world class resort but have contributed hundreds of thousands of dollars each year to deserving Bandon non-profit organizations both public and private. Their track record speaks to their community concern and the quality of their projects.

If what is sought is a complete absence of humans from an area rich in offshore wildlife viewing, then clearly 11th Street should be closed off and the Fish and Wildlife parking lot torn up and planted with grasses.

Barring that, a property owner with a history of good works and environmental stewardship should be allowed to construct this project, which complies with all planning rules and asks for not a single exception or variance.

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