To the editor:

I wish to urge the Brownwood Bulletin to take a stand in supporting the creation of a landscape ordinance for the city of Brownwood.

I was born and raised here in Brownwood. I graduated from Brownwood High in ’72 and from Howard Payne University in ’76. After traveling around the U.S. and Europe for two years I found myself in Thousand Oaks, Calif., where I lived for 28 years. I recently returned to live here in Brownwood.

An overwhelming difference between the two cities is the attitude toward appearance. When asked to describe Thousand Oaks I immediately respond, “It’s like living in a park.” For example, the local Home Depot has 20 King Palms lining the entrance to their property. Separating the parking lanes are medians planted with smaller palms and flowering bushes. Each convenience store is landscaped with grass, trees and flowering bushes. Many even have water fountains and/or sculptural works of art. The building housing the Thousand Oaks Star, the local paper, has a lush lawn with fountains at the entrance.

When asked to describe Brownwood, my past response has been, “Black asphalt as far as you can see.” From the Heartland Mall to Commerce Square, what you see is parking lots.

At major intersections such as Austin Avenue and Coggin, you see the immense empty lots of the old JRB and Brookshire’s markets.

I was pleased to notice on my return this past August that there have been attempts made to beautify downtown Brownwood. I applaud those beginning attempts and urge the City Council as representatives of the residents of Brownwood to move forward in adopting a landscape ordinance. Brownwood’s current motto is “Feels like home…” How do you want your home to look? Well-landscaped and green, even park-like, or asphalt as far as your eye can see?

David Dillard