I can only hope that city leaders will take a long, thoughtful look at Moab’s new downtown plan and Avenue Consultants’ recommendations.
While many of their suggestions: second story affordable apartments above Main Street businesses, better signage, improved crosswalks and LED lighting (I personally would rather have less lights and more stars) seem sensible, I find their biggest and by far most expensive idea of pedestrian traverses simply ridiculous.
In this age of helicopter parenting, and “see something say something,” those officials and consultants steeped in fear and percolating in a culture of protecting people from themselves, no mater the cost, can easily run amok and stray into the land of lunacy; so seems the case with Avenue Consultants.
Anyone attempting to make a left turn on Main Street at any hour of the day should find the idea of replacing the center turn lane with pedestrian traverses simply insane. I have no idea what the projected cost of these islands (read: congestion machines) would be, but consider the added cost of the trees they want to include, and the irrigation needed to keep them alive, and I would guess — astronomical. And didn’t we just rip up Main Street last winter?
All this in the name of keeping jaywalkers safe.
Meanwhile, our housing shortage continues to spiral out of control, leaving a large segment of our workforce to sleep in their cars and, oh yeah, Moab still lacks a homeless shelter.
It seems as if the city and, more importantly, the people of Moab, would be much better served were we to take that money which would be spent on those congestion makers and put up a few “DON’T JAYWALK” signs, and maybe a police officer on a bicycle to enforce it. The rest of that money could be spent on our real problem: affordable housing.