Where are the studies?

Opinion: Letters To The Editor

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I read your article on "Slow Streets" ['Slow Streets' gets push from Transportation Commission, News, June 17] and the background information presented by Bike Walk Oak Park on the village's website. One thing that is missing: Why? In particular, why these streets? Normally, if someone wants to do something in the village, like build a condo building, the first thing everybody demands is a traffic study. What is going to be the effect on surrounding neighbors?

Let's apply this normal Oak Park community standard to the Slow Streets project. First, where is the study stating Oak Park's existing neighborhood sidewalks are inadequate for its citizens to walk on? Second, where is the study showing how many citizens walk down each block of Oak Park every day? How many cars drive down each block every day? How many delivery trucks drive down each block every day? How many people bike down each block every day?

Once we know the answers to these questions, we begin to have an idea as to whether any blocks should be selected to be a slow street. Then we can look at what will the effect be on blocks neighboring the street in question. Will there be a detrimental impact resulting from increased traffic brought about by the adjacent "slow" street?

I live on a street where several times a day adults from multiple daycare centers walk their little preschoolers past my house. How come they don't warrant a "slow street?" How come an area surrounding every daycare center in Oak Park does not warrant a "slow street?" How come every grade school doesn't warrant a "slow street?"

What is the purpose of a slow street? Oh, wait, I know: somebody else did it so we should do it.

Has anybody on the village board actually thought about this, or are they just dazzled by some pretty pictures?

Alan Krause

Oak Park

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