The Cambrian

Viewpoint: What kind of place could, should Cambria be?

“If we open a quarrel between past and present, we shall find that we have lost the future.”

—Winston Churchill

Betty Gatos’ letter “Surely dying” (March 4, http://bit. ly/ 3-4ltrs) summarizes so many of the opinions voiced lately by Cambrians in our beloved digital town square, The Cambrian. Ms. Gatos correctly and wisely asks the right question facing this town: what kind of town do we really want?

There are many sensible voices here who quietly present their rational positions, only to be shouted down by a loud and irrational opposition. The “NO-Growthers,” with their objections to “setting precedents” if even a single camouflaged cell phone tower is erected are only exceeded in their fear of the future by the “Hands Off Everything” group who demonstrate and throw tantrums when ever a nervous homeowner wants to take down a tree that is threatening to slice their home in half in the next storm.

Then there are the developers masquerading as “lot owners” who would like to get their hands on any open space. Generally, these are all well-meaning people; however, they seem to forget that they are also living in the United States of America, and that this is the 21st Century.

Cambria is actually one of those places in America where a large number of people who work in the “information” economy or “creative” communities would love to relocate. They have very high paying jobs, they can work anywhere in the world that has a high quality, reliable Internet connection, everywhere, all the time. If Wellington, New

Zealand, can become one of the leading centers of computer generated graphics for movies in the world, which it is, Cambria can at least get started with reliable cell service and properly manage its water.

Without leadership that understands the 21st Century economy, that can build an infrastructure along with the necessities of a community where the modern economy workers can thrive, Ms. Gatos’ prediction that the community “will deteriorate from a vibrant, lively village to one that is surely dying”—or will be paved over—will be the future of Cambria.

Obviously, any group with specious plans for new development will be met with the same staunch vigor that preserved Fiscalini Ranch. Cambria’s unique features, its fortunate location and the very soul of this village are the reasons why it is attractive to so many — but ongoing changes in the national economy, rapid advances in technology, the changing demographics of the general population must not be ignored. We need a comprehensive blueprint for the future, rather than these special interest, knee-jerk reactions to the present circumstances.

The baby boom generation wants to come to Cambria — and we are not retiring. While wanting to escape the congestion and pace of the large metropolitan areas we need, and as home owners will demand, up-to-date infrastructure.

Make no mistake. We intend to work hard to protect the essence of what Cambria has to offer, but we will have little patience for self-serving obstructionists and special interest groups who offer no vision of what kind of place Cambria could and should be.

Television producer Stephen Pullin is a part-time resident of Cambria.