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Pave the Cross Kirkland Corridor | Letter
It doesn't take much to notice how horrible the north-south commute has become on the Eastside. Kirkland, like many other eastside communities, is greatly and negatively impacted. How it got this bad and why so many are so apathetic about it, is a topic for another day. I'm writing to voice my strong support for paving the Cross Kirkland Corridor as soon as possible.
Right now there is no reasonable, safe, efficient way for cyclists to commute in this city. Paving the corridor would provide just such thing and it is sorely needed. Giving cyclists a real path, not crushed gravel, would not just benefit us but those who have to drive would have easier commutes. There would be fewer cars on the roads. More people will bike if it's a reasonable option. With cyclists off the roads and on a separate path, things would be far safer and more efficient for all. Cyclists know it's a pain to sit in your car following us up a hill or on an arterial.
Right now the plan is to spend a few million to lay down crushed gravel on the path, with no date in sight as to when it would be paved. Paving seems tied to a grandiose vision including light-rail. We know there won't be rail here for at least a decade or even longer if the progressive forward-thinkers at Kemper Freeman have a say. Crushed gravel is nice but it is not a viable surface for most bikes, and certainly not for strollers, roller blades, etc.
The money spent for gravel would be better put towards paving and our legislators and leaders could recognize the insane commutes we are now dealing with. They must not have to commute or they'd share the outrage. Lobby the state and federal agencies for the rest of the funds needed. One can dream... as he sits in his car or bus on 405 going no where.
Leo Gilbert, Kirkland