The sun was rising on another beautiful Temple morning. Traffic was buzzing up and down South 31st Street. Everyone was going about their business, including the man in the big earthmover grinding away in a large green field along the busy road. The loud machine was relentlessly taking down a large grove of trees that has been greeting South Temple commuters for generations.

With pass after pass, the big scoop leveled another chunk of green as they slowly surrendered without a fight. More of Temple’s quickly disappearing green space was erased. They call this progress. They say that people need places to live and businesses need places to grow. Hundreds more acres have been annexed into the city of Temple in recent days. More subdivisions are being plotted. Every patch of open ground is being sought for development.

As green fields continue to disappear, concrete continues to flow and tract homes sprout up overnight and commercial signs replicate themselves, we need to remind ourselves that this is progress. But try telling that to all the birds and other critters who used to make that field their home. Try telling that to future generations who won’t see anything but street signs and parking lots and never know what that green field looked liked and won’t even know they have lost something.

Yes, people need places to live and businesses need places to grow. But all of this is coming at a great price. We all become just a little more disconnected from nature and a little less grounded as humans. And Temple takes yet another step to becoming the next Austin.

Don Cillo