Our mayor has established her top ten goals for this year. They include revitalizing downtown, adopting a city energy plan, improved neighborhood safety, revitalizing the urban core, boosting partnerships in recreation, transportation and public safety, improving the effectiveness of city government and focusing on special needs population.
But there's no mention of the traffic. Traffic in this university town is the worst I've seen in a city this size, which is about 100,000. It's crazy, the roads are jammed, the lights are poorly timed, it takes 30 minutes to get just a couple of miles, there are people blocking intersections, it's just a mess. Ambulances and fire trucks have a difficult time maneuvering the packed highways. Just a decade ago, afternoon traffic didn't get heavy till about 4 p.m. and many of us liked to get off work on Fridays about 3 pm so we could do our errands and zip home with no problem. Now, it's bumper to bumper at 2 pm in the afternoon.
Meanwhile, some of our "esteemed" elected leaders wanted to revitalize the already overcrowded downtown area. You know what they wanted to do? They wanted to remove one lane from traffic and make it pedestrian friendly. Main street in downtown is one of the most traveled highways in this city and removing one lane would have significantly reduced the flow making an already bad situation much worse. It would have also removed the entire highway from the list of state maintained roads, a heavy cost that would have been taken on by local taxpayers.
It's really disgraceful that these folks are worried about the already overcrowded and overdeveloped downtown area while most folks int he rest of the city can't get home at a decent hour because they're sitting in their cars in traffic for so damn long.