North Shore: R.I.P.

In my recent jeremiad about the suburbanization of the north woods, I focused on the north central part of the state. I picked that area--Crow Wing and Cass Counties, mainly--because it is famaliar to me. But truth is, the trends I bemoaned in the piece are prevalent across much of northern Minnesota.

A friend just tipped me to this story from the Duluth News Tribune, which examines the current land rush along the North Shore. Staff reporter Jane Brissett doesn't deliver on the snarky promise of the headline, "Invasion of the Rich;" frankly, the story reads like a bit like a real estate ad. Still, she does supply some appalling nuggets about the boom in luxury developments. For instance:

Last Thursday , the first residents of Burlington Bay Lakehomes at Superior Shores Resort moved into the first building of a seven-building, 10-year, $80 million project on 22 acres of lakeshore. It will include a 35,000-square-foot water park, six condominium buildings, retail shops and a 70-unit lodge.

A 35,000-square foot water park on the shores of the world's largest freshwater lake? If Sigurd Olson was still alive, he'd be eyeballing the roofbeam for a spot to tie the noose.

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