Railroad must not take beautiful agriculture land for a rail yard
Last month, Union Pacific announced plans to build a 72-track, 1,000-acre rail classification yard in Robertson County between Mumford and Muse Road. This project has been touted by local government officials as a boost for the local economy, but the proposed site is the wrong one.
This project would forever convert fertile, irrigated prime cropland into a noisy, dirty, contaminated industrial wasteland. In addition, this project would destroy a thriving farming community made up of landowners, tenants, residents and many ag related small businesses.
More than likely, this project would render surrounding cropland (possibly thousands of acres) useless for agricultural products such as cotton, milo, corn, soybeans, wheat, peanuts, alfalfa and coastal bermuda — all of which can now be grown on this land. In addition, this project would forever change the quiet, peaceful quality of life for the individuals and families who live there because rail yards are far from quiet and peaceful — just ask any Union Pacific employee who works or has worked at one.
It is shameful that Union Pacific has no qualms about taking away land that has been in families for more than three generations in addition to taking away the livelihoods of the tenants who rent and farm the land and the many small business owners who support the farmers. It is also shameful that for more than 60 years the farmers and residents of the community have endured hours of blocked public crossings which cut off access to their homes and farms.
Young schoolchildren often crawl under rail cars to catch their bus because Union Pacific trains block public crossings.
This land is the wrong site because God no longer makes land such as this, and Union Pacific needs to be stopped.
KATHLEEN COTROPIA HUBBARD