To the editor:
I have read with interest recent articles that state that Franklin will take over the maintenance of State Road 44 from U.S. 31 to Interstate 65 from the State of Indiana and how unfriendly streets are to pedestrians.
Who will be responsible for redesigning Jefferson Street when Franklin takes over the maintenance of the roadway? I hope that the same people who created the Main Street debacle will have no input in the project. The way that the wide beautiful boulevard entrance into our downtown was changed into an alley-like maze where a driver has to constantly watch for shifting lanes, narrowing lanes and odd places is dangerous to smooth flowing traffic.
Main Street south of the square has the same problem, especially during the Youngs Creek bridge. Will the final phase of North Main Street be the same disgrace to our growing city and the need for streets to be automobile friendly? Streets are for cars, not pedestrians. By the way, danger to pedestrians is heightened when automobiles are constantly changing direction to avoid traffic.
After the State Road 44 takeover, will the curb intrusion at the corner of Jackson and Jefferson be removed for driver safety? Will the existing lanes be aligned along the roadway so that the current narrowings at the railroad crossing, the bridges, etc., be eliminated. One look at Edinburgh’s downtown shows the wisdom of their street planners in designing wide roadways.
Will the takeover of State Road 44 through Franklin allow the possibility of making King Street and Jefferson Street one-way routes through downtown. This could be a way to allow traffic to have an easier way to traverse our growing city. Truck commerce is more financially valuable to all taxpayers than having some cute storefronts, which benefits only the special interests of the owners of the business. This is a form of public welfare.
By the way, money spent on fixing the facades of downtown buildings should be used for taxpayer purposes, such as roads, etc., not to reward the owners of historic treasures who neglected them. They should be fined, not rewarded.