Laurel Springs: Not buying it

Cleaning up the banks of Laurel Lake in Laurel Springs Borough are (from left) Carolyn Redstreake, Ellen Kuehner, and Elizabeth Kuehner Smith. Forty cubic yards of debris were picked up Saturday at the Camden County site.

The view is lovely. But for $100,000?

Citing a cost estimate as well as opposition by some residents, Laurel Springs, NJ has rejected the notion of purchasing a choice piece of private lakefront property and preserving it as open space.

"We would, of course, like to have those three acres left untouched," borough Councilman Gene Letts says. "However, we all examined the issue thoroughly and there was no choice but to decline."

Elizabeth Kuehner Smith and other members of her family own the three undeveloped acres of lakefront on either side of Glen Avenue. The woodsy stretch is downstream from a spot made famous by Walt Whitman, and has been in their family for generations. Read my column about a spring cleanup of the lake here.

Following statements by borough officials Monday that Laurel Springs is not interested in acquiring the land, "we are taking a collective breath and regrouping," Kuehner Smith says.