Grand Street and the reduction of lanes

Dear Editor:

In May, the City Council passed ordinance 19-049 which make changes to Grand Street, which is the access road to the Medical Center. This change was done to appease the bike community so they would have their bike lanes. The goal is to reduce Grand Street to two lanes, one east and the other west. In theory according to the city council, this would not harm any access with the ambulance. But here is the problem, during construction of various downtown streets, recently access to Grand Street was reduced. It took an extremely long time for cars to filter on one lane going east where the traffic moved at an extremely slow pace.

Parents do not wait for an ambulance when an emergency strikes; they instead bring their children by auto to the emergency room. Under the city’s new plan, their sick family member might not make it because Grand Street reduction of lanes means their family member might not survive their trip to the hospital. This is totally irresponsible.

This is not the first time the City Council under the mayor’s directions have acted irresponsible. The City Council took away parking from the Municipal Courts and sold their parking lot to a developer, now we are on the hook to pay for parking for employees. The City Council again fined property owners who owned empty lots and citizens came to City Hall where the council had to correct this. Finally, the City Council introduced AirBnB without understanding the impact this would have for neighbors and owners. This is all done under the directions of the mayor.

But the latest change for Grand Street means parents should worry if they are able to reach the Medical Center in time if their child has an asthma attack. What the city council did under the direction of the mayor is simply immoral.

Yvonne Balcer