LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Don’t mess with Central Avenue

Editor:

Having attended the recent McKinleyville Municipal Advisory Committee when the proposed center strip median for Central Avenue was discussed, I would like to reiterate my thoughts to you now.

It’s bad idea.

I have been a resident for only three years.  I really enjoy all the access the current alignment offers.

Central Avenue is not broken – don’t mess with it.

CentralEach and everyone at the MMAC meeting disliked the concept but for varying reasons.

Here are my thoughts:

The center turning lane is often used by emergency vehicles to bypass the traffic.  As we know, time is of most importance when these entities are performing their duties.

The proposed U-turn areas are very insufficient for wider radius turning vehicles to get from one side of the avenue to the other.

U-turns are prohibited anywhere there is a “No U-Turn” sign, in front of fire stations, in a business district or in heavy traffic.  This data is straight out of the California Driver License Handbook.

We have all of those conditions the full length of Central Avenue.

There are small numbers of accidents as of now considering the amount of traffic.  I predict there would be a substantial increase of broadside crashes if U-turns are implemented.

A median would virtually cut off access for the large majority of each and every small business along the avenue. These shop owners are completely dependent on clear, easy access for their customers.

Where and how would larger delivery trucks manage to get to or unload for any larger commercial enterprise?

In these particularly tough economic times, any decrease in revenue would devastate our local businesses profits.

Far fewer shoppers would take the trouble to utilize any U-turn areas.  No one wants to pass their destination and be forced to double back.  Just consider the danger of someone managing to successfully maneuver a U-turn then need to pull into the outside lane to access any business driveway – dreadfully dangerous.

As a consumer I would be considerably more hesitant to shop locally if access is more complicated.

Consider this…. Any left turn stacking lanes are only as efficient as to the number of cars that will fit.  What that means is if there are stacking areas for 2 or 3 cars, any third or fourth car would be stuck out in the travelling lane therefore blocking the flow through traffic.  That would also create more dangerous situations possibly resulting in rear end collisions.

Any changes to an area should be initiated by the local folks not a bureaucrat who doesn’t deal with our situation on a day to day basis.

We are the residents/business people.  We have said “no, thanks.”

Gura Lashlee

McKinleyville