OPINION

Dugan: Include unincorporated areas in international dark skies designation

Posted

I would like to commend Mr. Schroeder concerning the dark skies article in the paper ("Apache Junction needs International Dark Skies Association designation," page 8, guest commentary by Apache Junction City Councilmember Robert Schroeder; and "Dark-skies designation suggested for City of Apache Junction," page 12, both in the April 2020 issue) .

I have been involved with telescope facilities design and construction for many years and have seen the problem increase. I would hope there is some way to include the unincorporated areas.

As a particular example, I built a house near the north end of Apache Drive very close to the Goldfield mountains.

My house is a very old-fashioned design and all the lighting points down.

A couple of years ago someone started building a home across the street on the mountain above the wash. First, I know that I built my house here because of the freedom of the rural zoning, so I won’t normally complain about what someone builds.

A large hunk of the mountain was cut out and a three- story fortress was built with roll down metal shutters on every opening. I can live with that.

Then they installed a chain link fence that runs up and back down the very steep hillside along the property line. So be it.

However, now they have installed a light on every post of the fence that automatically come on and stay on all night.

As a native-born Arizonan and lover of the Sonoran Desert and the beautiful view of the stars at night, I find this very offensive.

When the house was built, I was a little upset about the location, but live and let live, but why the lights? I have no idea who the owner is but come on man.

Patrick Dugan
Apache Junction

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