Letters to the Editor 03-12-14

Interest is high regarding the future of Main Street, Findlay. Plans illustrated recently in The Courier push for a single lane of traffic, both north and south, and “back-in angle parking.”
Opposing opinions are strong. Several writers have suggested a temporary “mock-up” for a test of this plan. My thought is that a “mock-up” is great, but not for a short period of time. It should run for at least 18 months. This time is needed to learn the effect of weather, seasons, and personalities.
The mock-up should be at least two city blocks in length. Leased “short-length” concrete traffic barriers would mark the corners of each parking slot. Traffic cones and a lot of paint would be required.
Because the concrete traffic barrier is wider than a painted line, the number of parking spots would be somewhat reduced from that in the proposal.
This mock-up provides for the timid to practice their reverse parking. They might rub the concrete barriers without harming them much.
A suggestion overheard the other day: “Remove curbs on the Main Street sidewalks so that emergency vehicles might, when necessary, travel there without bumps.”
E. Tom Child

Like others who have written to the paper about the plan to reduce the number of Main Street’s traffic lanes, I believe that a lot more thought is needed.
Here are some additional questions that would be worthy of answering before the new design is adopted.
What study has been done on the ability of people to back into angled parking spaces? As a senior citizen who can parallel park just fine, I think I would have difficulty in craning my neck so that I could look back to enter an angled parking space with a car parked on each side of me and a line of traffic waiting while I did this. Has anyone taken the city fathers out to see if they can in fact back into a parking space with cars on either side in the configuration illustrated in the paper?
Will big trucks with hitches on the back fit into a parking space without sticking out into traffic? Will delivery trucks fit into the spaces? They couldn’t stand on the street as that would stop all traffic in one direction. Where will they go? How will businesses deal with that problem?
What impact will doubling the traffic on a single lane have on the lifetime of the road surface and how much more often will all traffic along Main Street be disturbed when resurfacing is needed? How will planting a median strip with trees eventually impact the utilities buried beneath the street and the ability of the utility workers to access and work below the roadbed of Main Street?
It would seem that any plan that causes two lanes of traffic to funnel down into one lane will create traffic congestion, start-and-stop traffic flow, and perhaps more accidents. Do we need this?
Nancy Susan Bakaitis


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