Monday, September 14, 2009

Traffic tantrum

Guilford Mooring on the hot seat, reading sanitized feedback.

About the only thing diffident town officials (Town Manager, DPW chief and Select Board) seemed sure of was the acrimonious "experiment" to reroute Umass traffic around adjacent neighborhoods (into of course some other neighborhoods) should continue until the scheduled September 23 end date.

Even Public Works Committee Chair Steve Braun (who just happens to live on Lincoln Avenue) backed away from declaring the barriers a success and Phil Jackson (who also lives on Lincoln Avenue) indefatigable architect of the three-year public relations campaign to smother traffic, attacked the media for singling out Lincoln Avenue while downplaying Fearing, Sunset, and McClellan streets and playing up divisiveness.

And Mr. Jackson should know something about "the media", as he is an Amherst Bulletin columnist.

The Town Manager described September 9--the first day of the 15 day experiment--as "chaotic". Guilford Mooring, DPW Chief, described some of the public comments that have come in enough "to make a sailor blush."

But this is Amherst, so the study continues...
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-----Original Message-----
From: amherstac@aol.com
To: mooringG@amherstma.gov; ShafferL@amherstma.gov; selectboard@amherstma.gov
Sent: Tue, Sep 15, 2009 5:27 pm
Subject: Public Documents Request

Could I please get copies (electronic or hardcopy) of all the public comments sent to the DPW, Town Manager, and Select Board concerning the "traffic calming" experiment on Lincoln Ave (and related streets) from the citizens of Amherst.

Thanks,

Larry Kelley

24 comments:

Anonymous said...

It should continue. Let's see what actually happens to traffic rather than what a bunch alarmists say is going to happen. Everyone get to work yesterday? I think so.

Anonymous said...

Was the prozac truck able to make its' deliveries?

I hope so.

Taylor said...

Of course the town is going to let it continue for another week. But then it will be done. It allows them to save some face, but the public outcry has been too loud, too decisive against it for the barriers to continue.

The town is in the wrong here and they know it. You can't use public money to close down a road to convenience a few residents and make other streets more congested, less safe, and create an adversial relationship with the employees and students of the town's largest economy. And for what? Just to make the homes that were bought by the residents of Lincoln and Sunset Avenue, at a time when they knew the roads connected to Umass, worth more? So the town is subzidizing personal property values? Don't even get me started that the DPW Committee Chair is a resident of the street. Talk about a conflict of interest.

Larry, did anyone ask for a detailed report of the serious accidents that have occurred on Lincoln and Sunset in the last 5 years and the number of serious injuries and deaths that resulted from those accidents? How do those statistics compare to other roads in town? Really I think the taxpayers of Amherst are owed more of an explanation about the necessity of this change and need to be provided more reasons than the residents of two roads wanted it.

LarryK4 said...

Good analysis.

No nothing mentioned about accident rates over the past five years but Amherst PD keeps good records so that should not be hard to get (and of course they should)

One woman who lives nearby and hates the blockade said she was almost in a head on because somebody went around the barriers.

Anonymous said...

Someone going around the barriers doesn't count. It just means the barriers have to be unpassable.

Anonymous said...

Someone going around the barriers doesn't count. It just means the barriers have to be unpassable.

Great idea, hopefully the extra time it would take an ambulance, a fire truck, or the police to get to your house won't result in catastrophic consquences for you.

Of course as long as your neighborhood is peaceful and you keep those horrible students and working class folks away, it will all be worth it.

LarryK4 said...

Yeah, I was almost taken out this morning on my mountain bike because a Umass Maintenance Department one ton enclosed pick up truck went thru the barrier.

They should stop this nonsense now before somebody really gets hurt.

Anonymous said...

Larry, I hope YOU didn't endanger anyone when you went around the barriers and got pulled over!

Good ol'Law and Order Larry.

Ha.

LarryK4 said...

No, actually I did not go around the barriers. I took a left to get on Lincoln from Fearing. (and only today when I was on my mountain bike did I notice the sign saying "do not enter".}

And when I was on the other northernmost side of Lincoln this morning (heading south) and the Umass truck almost took me out, I also observed a young driver just go thru the Malfunction Junction (coming up from University Drive) without stopping at the 4-way Stop simply because she was confused by the barriers.

Ed said...

I can give the following from memory.

Pedestrians hit on Lincoln avenue in past few years, NONE. Pedestrians hit on Mass Ave (the alt route) - several, most recently the SOM girl who was either killed or damn near killed.

Sorry folks, facts matter.

And this sailor isn't going to bother giving the schmucks any feedback - they will remove those damn things or there is going to be so much administrative paperwork from assorted state and federal agencies coming down on them that it isn't funny.

You know, they neglected to file an environmental impact study...

And let us never forget that the League of Women Voters head lives on Lincoln Avenue and someone might just have pictures of them being exempt from the no parking signs...

And I think I will bring all my neighbors to the next selectboard meeting and demand that the town provide translators. After all, if they want to make Lincoln Avenue a "White Only" neighborhood, they are going to have to justify it to the various minority folks they are excluding.

F**k Amherst

Anonymous said...

Larry,

explain how "I took a left to get on Lincoln from Fearing" isn't going around the barriers. If I understand you would have had to be in the northbound lane to get onto Lincoln, which is essentially going around the barrier as it is in the lane you should have turned into!

LarryK4 said...

Yeah, now that I think about it you're probably right (although my daughter is sleeping, so I'm not going to jump on my bike and ride back and check.)

Considering the blockade is to prevent folks (students and employees) from getting TO UMass I was simply trying to get AWAY from Umass (which I have done unfettered for 35 years or so) at a time in the morning when the vast majority of traffic is going the other way (if of course they could get thru the barriers)

Sooooo... like that young Umass woman who blew thru the 4-way Stop sign, I guess I too was confused.

Anonymous said...

Oh my we are now going to analyze Larry's bike riding maneuvers.

Fact is none of this would be necessary if the town had not concocted this without merit, cockamamey traffic rerouting plan that no one benefits from and many suffer from.

Anonymous said...

You know, they neglected to file an environmental impact study...

Um, do you need one for this experiment? I doubt it.

Anonymous said...

"And I think I will bring all my neighbors to the next selectboard meeting and demand that the town provide translators. After all, if they want to make Lincoln Avenue a "White Only" neighborhood, they are going to have to justify it to the various minority folks they are excluding.

F**k Amherst"


Amen! Fucking corrupt racist dump.

Anonymous said...

"So the town is subzidizing personal property values? Don't even get me started that the DPW Committee Chair is a resident of the street. Talk about a conflict of interest."


Cock suckers. WTF next?

DaveMB said...

Has the Chamber of Commerce weighed in officially yet on this stupid idea? I work at UMass and sometimes drive into town to spend money on lunch or other things. Whether I do that or not on a given day depends on how much time I have available and how long it will take me to drive. I am prepared to deal with the need to park, but getting sent several blocks out of my way on the way back makes me a lot less likely to go there.

When I was a kid I read a book of folktales about a wise Japanese judge. One day his town instituted a one-time progressive property tax, where every homeowner paid one gold piece for every door of their house. One wiseguy boarded up six of the seven doors of his house and paid only one gold piece. The wise judge ordered the seventh door boarded up as well, so he wouldn't need to pay at all.

Something like this is the solution to Lincoln Avenue. Make the whole neighborhood a pedestrian and bicycle mall, but with no exemption for residents. Anyone in the area who wants a car can park it by the stadium.

LarryK4 said...

No, the Chamber has not "officially" weighed in on this fiasco (they are kind of like pre-WW2 France and would rather group hug than fight) but they signaled their possible displeasure since this will most definitely have a negative impact on downtown businesses (and guess what? Their office is downtown.)

Anonymous said...

"Rodriguez: Cresto's resignation final, amicable
Wednesday, September 16, 2009

AMHERST - Superintendent Alberto Rodriguez announced Tuesday that Glenda Cresto will not withdraw her resignation as principal of the Regional Middle School and described her parting as an amicable one."


LOL.

Amhesrt is so completely out of control...

Anonymous said...

No out of control Amherst, is the Select Board extended Larry Shaffer's contract into 2013.
That means 4 more years under Larry's tryannical rule.

Anonymous said...

Why is a left turn from Fearing onto Lincoln not allowed???

I am a N Amherst resident (E Pleasant St) with no need to be on campus or downtown) Why am I being forced to travel to University Dr to make a left hand turn???

Anonymous said...

"When I was a kid I read a book of folktales about a wise Japanese judge. One day his town instituted a one-time progressive property tax, where every homeowner paid one gold piece for every door of their house. One wiseguy boarded up six of the seven doors of his house and paid only one gold piece. The wise judge ordered the seventh door boarded up as well, so he wouldn't need to pay at all.

"Something like this is the solution to Lincoln Avenue. Make the whole neighborhood a pedestrian and bicycle mall, but with no exemption for residents. Anyone in the area who wants a car can park it by the stadium."

The "wiseguy" lives at 180 Lincoln, so - in the spirit of this little story - why not just put all the concrete in his driveway?

Anonymous said...

Or at least another Jersey barrier in his driveway....

Anonymous said...

Friday afternoons are a nightmare! While Fridays have always been busy, I have never seen the backups I've experienced in the last two weeks coming in from South Amherst (at around 3:30/4:00PM)