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Narrowing busy streets

not answer in Fayetteville

As an avid cyclist and dedicated bike commuter who logs more than 5,000 miles per year, I am adamantly opposed to narrowing our city streets. Fayetteville is a challenging place to bicycle commute. Our hills are steep and many of our roads are narrow. Were it not for our outstanding trail system, I would not be able to commute by bike.

Recently the city of Fayetteville hired a consulting group to assess our mobility plans. An example of one of their ideas: Narrow Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard/U.S. 62 from five lanes to three and replace those lanes with bike lanes and wide sidewalks, apparently with the belief that doing so will force more people out of their cars and onto bikes or foot.

Narrowing these streets is a horrible idea. Slowing traffic, increasing commute times, and burning more fossil fuel is not going to force more people to walk or ride bikes, nor make doing so any easier.

Traffic-calming measures and narrow streets only force drivers to find alternate routes, typically through residential neighborhoods, making our side streets even more dangerous for our citizens. We need wide arterial roads to quickly and efficiently move people to and from work, school and to our areas of commerce.

City council members, do you really think all those people commuting in from Farmington, Prairie Grove and Lincoln are going to ride their bikes into Fayetteville?

If you truly want to make cyclists and pedestrians safer, continue the good work of building out a connected trail system separate and apart from our city streets and state highways. Physically separating cars from pedestrians and cyclists is much safer than trying to separate them with painted white lines or a narrow patch of grass.

Please do not narrow our streets any further. Doing so won't increase bicycle commuting and will simply create additional traffic problems for our citizens and businesses. Dedicated trails are a better, safer, and a more environmentally responsible solution.

Steve Meldrum


Columnist attacks Trump, ignores his achievements

A classic example of the liberal playbook is to attack someone personally if you can't successfully argue against his actions. Frequent columnist Woody Bassett (you will see him to the left of lefty John Brummett) epitomized the technique in April 19's Voices Page. Woody spends two columns pointing out President Donald Trump's personal foibles as his reason "history will likely rank the election of Trump to be among the biggest electoral mistakes this country has ever made."

Wrong. History (unlike Woody) will record the accomplishments Trump presided over. Woody says "this man is all hat and no cattle." Wrong again. Here are just a few of the "cattle" in just the first 16 months of Trump's first term: tax cuts for most Americans; a jobs bill that added more than a million new workers who now become taxpayers instead of tax money receivers; appointment of Nikki Haley as U.N. ambassador, a refreshing change from the previous timid souls; clearing the way for the Keystone pipeline; reining in the nannies of the EPA; sending troops to our porous border and getting money for more fence; the end of the mindless catch-and-release enforcement policy; going after sanctuary cities; pushing through legislation providing $98 million for more cops; moving North Korea to the negotiating table; convincing China to rethink its bad trade policy; and getting Great Britain and France on board to help enforce President Obama's red line in Syria.

Not bad for a man Woody says "has made his presidency all about him and rarely about the country."

Jim Kippen


Commentary on 04/24/2018

Print Headline: NWA Letters to the Editor

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