Tiger sanctuary denied
By Mindy Honey
Thursday, June 18, 2009
The Taney County Planning Commission denied a proposal Monday night that would have allowed construction of a tiger sanctuary north of Branson.
The project would have been built on U.S. 160 and included a visitors’ center and education center, as well as cages and barns for tigers and other large cats.
“The thing that bothers me is the compatibility in the area,” said Ray Edwards, a member of the planning commission. “We’ve got, right across the highway from where this is going to go, are some very expensive homes and then just west of there, not very far, there are some expensive homes in there.”
He believes there would be an adverse affect on property owners in that area.
“I wouldn’t want it next door to me,” he said, “and I wouldn’t want 24 tigers across the road from me.
“There is a lot of land in Taney County that is not tied in with residential. Even though this is an impressive layout, I think it is the wrong location and not compatible.”
Keith Kinkade, a representative from Global Resources for Environmental Education and Nature, known as GREEN, which was going to build the project, said they are going to continue to look for land.
“We have a couple of lots we’ve been looking at,” he said. “We will continue to look in Taney County.”
Judy McGee, also with GREEN, said that they have been looking for possible locations for the past year-and-a-half.
“We understand it sounds a little scary,” Kinkade said.
GREEN currently has a similar development in Bloomsdale, in the St. Louis area.
“We’d encourage everyone to come and visit,” he said.
Patricia Beese and her husband Robert live on 160, near where the project was to be built.
“I’m very pleased they decided to deny it,” she said.
She said she had nothing against the project, she just didn’t want it built near her home.
Van and Darlene Daugherty, who also live on 160, said they were also pleased with the decision.
“They would have joined us on the back side,” Van Daugherty said, explaining they own nine acres. “It went across our whole backside.”
“It is a residential area,” Darlene Daugherty said.