Comment 52818

By hshields (registered) - website | Posted December 08, 2010 at 11:46:12

Wow, I had no idea so many people would get all ruffled up by a technical briefing!

To Ryan, thank you for bringing this issue up. In the threads there are accusations of being biased and I think you do a good job of first clarifying that you work independently and second, although you work independently there are conclusions you've come to and priorities you place over others you think creates a net benefit for the community. Slow-moving, densely populated downtowns are more viable than auto-friendly, fast-moving traffic corridors.

I also appreciate what Jillian is explaining about the decision to keep Main and Cannon open to that corridor mentality. I'd like to frame it as a conflict of priorities. The City has a responsibility to ensure they have the "public interest" at heart when making decisions. This means a lot of different things to different people but, when we look at that credo in the context of LRT, the City is basically saying, 'look, we'll give this LRT thing a shot because we think it is better performance for taxpayer dollars than our current transit system. It could spark some economic development, improve property values and do some good for the environment. However, we are not putting all our traffic eggs into the LRT basket. We're going to keep Main and Cannon just as they are, in fact, maybe even remove surface parking, to ensure there is a balance between people who want to take LRT and people who need to drive from point a to point b."

Notice the word "balance." This is the credo. The City isn't taking sides, but, by not taking sides, they don't transform the culture as Ryan puts it, and LRT, along with a culture of less-car, is undermined.

If LRT actually happens, and is popular, the City will re-visit Cannon and Main and make changes on the fly. This is incremental and evolving process. Give it some time but keep plugging away.

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