Fairfield is a tightly-packed community with many neighborhoods of diverse housing and residents. The residential landscape is dense; and as outside developers continue to submit proposals for more high-density residential projects, prospects for greater density intensify.

In total, there are nearly 2,000 existing condo units in Fairfield. Examples are: Southport Woods (177 units), Mosswood Condominiums (136), Woodfield Village (134), Greenfield Hunt (100), New Hampshire Common (99), Dogwood Green (90), Strathmoor (70), Stone Ridge (70), Sunny Ridge (69), Park North (64), Colonial Gardens (56), The Meadows (50), and about 12 more complexes with an additional 25-plus units.

Several of these units even lie vacant in our sluggish economy. Yet at least one more proposed high-density, residential development is pending before the Town Plan and Zoning Commission: a 197-unit apartment complex at the Metro Center, recently opposed by our first selectman.

Private, high-density, residential development takes a narrow focus on a particular site. It is, by default, an indiscriminate planner of town growth and design. It is a de facto form of planning which is an inadequate and disordered substitute for a comprehensive and quantifiable town plan.

What is our town's go-forward plan for residential and commercial development? Isn't it time to have an open forum with residents, taxpayers and town boards on the effects of high-density residential growth on our infrastructure, our schools, our taxes and on the town character and safety and quality of life? We need a game plan and a clear and consistent assertion of where this town is headed -- before it's too late.

Carol Pontrelli, RTM District 9

Ruth Smey, RTM District 5