A Neighbor In the Surrounding Neighborhood of Patty Jewett Changed His Mind

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

A resident of the Patty Jewett neighborhood posted this letter on the internet supporting One Lane From Two Lanes. The Old North End is delighted to have this support:

After attending the PJNA [Patty Jewett Neighborhood Association] meeting Monday night, I have changed my mind and decided to support the safety-sizing plan. Like others have said, we won’t know the outcome unless we try, and the changes can be reversed. I personally was against this plan initially, because I thought it was being driven exclusively by CC and ONEN. But after hearing what Tim [Roberts] (city traffic engineer) had to say, I realized that regardless of the origin of the plan, why not give it a chance?

And like others have stated, people are resistant to change. And as I mentioned in the meeting on Monday, many of us in Patty Jewett may have had a more positive reaction to this plan had we not felt like we were being excluded from the process. Finding out about this plan at the eleventh hour was disconcerting to many of us who do not live in ONEN. The city could have done a much better job of communicating this proposed change to residents who do not live in ONEN, but live in areas immediately adjacent. Especially as Tim mentioned over and over that this is a city-driven plan now, not CC (even though based off of an initial CC traffic study).

But after expressing my frustration to Council Member [Jill] Gaebler on how this plan was communicated to residents of Patty Jewett, I decided to let go of my frustration and anger and take the long view. I’m glad that in 2016 our city can propose something shocking and possibly beneficial to our downtown core.

Look, I see less than a dozen cyclists using the bike lane [on Corona Street] during commute times, so I highly doubt we’ll suddenly see hundreds of cyclists using these new proposed bike lanes to commute downtown. Crossing Uintah is always going to be an issue for cyclists traveling north/south. And our city of 500k residents greatly suffers from not having an east/west, cross-town freeway. But if this plan is a success, maybe new traffic plans and changes will be proposed. Like closing Tejon [Street] to auto traffic downtown and making it a true pedestrian area.

John Threet

2 thoughts on “A Neighbor In the Surrounding Neighborhood of Patty Jewett Changed His Mind”

  1. I may not have all of the info correct, but I cannot see how traffic being redirected from 6 lanes in ONEN onto El Paso Blvd which is already just 2 lanes, could possibly be helpful for those of us living on or near El Paso Blvd. To me this feels like improving many streets at the expense of El Paso Blvd. It seems that communities should share the burden of traffic not dump it all in one area… Feel free to correct me if I am missing some info or don’t have a complete understanding about this. Otherwise, I am very much against this plan.

  2. Mary, the safety-sizing is not meant to redirect traffic. In fact, if it does it will be considered a failure and it will be reversed. These streets have extra capacity, meaning many of these lanes are not being used. By reducing them to a single lane in each direction, and adding features such as turn lanes, they should be able to carry just as much traffic in a safer way. Here is a good study from AARP that gives a good explanation.


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