Letters to the Editor

Tuesday, Nov 27 2012 11:00 PM

This is the best alternative?

By The Bakersfield Californian

So, let me see if I get this right. The Centennial Corridor freeway alignment recommendation would be to take out 310 residences and 121 commercial properties at a cost of $570 million while protecting historic properties and a local park (basketball courts and an outdoor hockey rink).

Yet when it comes to deciding how to handle the future traffic and associated noise from Highway 178 as it passes through the heart of downtown Bakersfield and the historic Westchester area, the proposed solution is to do nothing to address the real issue of traffic and instead propose to turn it into a beautification project to somehow make it more palatable. And at the same time, indicate that the alternative of diverting the traffic to Golden State Avenue (Highway 204) is too expensive even though it has limited impacts to commercial properties and little to no impacts to people's homes.

And seriously -- was Corridor Alternative A really an alternative or did someone just want to see how many homes and businesses in the Stockdale-California area they could take out with the stroke of a pen?

The next time you are on Google Maps, looking at the downtown area, take note of the "orange" highways and you tell me how Highway 178 traffic should connect to Highway 99 while providing a sensible and long-term solution to growing traffic in downtown Bakersfield and its wonderful neighborhoods.

James Patrick

Bakersfield

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