Editorial: Our lost gem


Glen Springs once served as a community swimming pool.

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Published: Sunday, December 23, 2012 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Friday, December 21, 2012 at 3:57 p.m.

We are always pleased to be able to publish the comments of Robert Knight on The Sun's opinion pages. As director of the Howard T. Odum Florida Springs Institute, Knight is perhaps Florida's most knowledgeable, and eloquent, spokesman on behalf of Florida's increasingly stressed springs, rivers and aquifers.

But Knight's Speaking Out published on Sunday's oped page is an especially must-read piece for Gainesville residents. It is a plea for the city of Gainesville to do all in its power to acquire and restore one of the city's long-lost environmental gems: Glen Springs.

Most residents don't even know Glen Springs exists; it has long been hidden away behind the Elks Lodge on Northwest 23rd Avenue, neglected, algae-filled and lined with concrete; a legacy from days long past when Glen Springs was the city's only public swimming pool.

Now there are indications that Elks members may be willing to part with the springs, clearing the way for environmental restoration ... and for the reintroduction of a gem of an urban springs that has been too long lost to a city that prides itself on its green ethic.

“What a great community project for ‘Dreamville' residents,” Knight writes, making reference to Gainesville native Tom Petty's song which mentions Glen Springs, “to show that they can pull together to bring this spring back from the brink of disaster.”

A great community project indeed. We urge city officials to find a way to restore Gainesville's lost gem of a spring.

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