The people of St. Thomas Pa. have spoken: They don't want zoning. Deciding how much or how little government control they want is their right, and we would not presume to tell them otherwise. But we've heard these arguments before, usually from rural areas, where folks don't want to have to go before a zoning board before they put up a new picket fence or shed to store the law tractor.
But consider the fact that without zoning, all of the following would be possible:
- Your neighbor retires as a fleet mechanic, but decides to keep his hand in by running a tune-up service out of his garage. Traffic on your rural road increases, and the sound of engines being revved up drowns out those songbirds you used to listen to.
- The farmer across the road decides to leave the land, and sells his acreage to developers who put up a warehouse complex. Diesel fumes replace the sweet country air, and the rattle of 18-wheelers breaks the silence (and your sleeping pattern) when they make midnight deliveries.