Letter to the Editor: Willow Road Debate Continues, Northfield Has 'Change of Heart'
One Glenview resident sounds off on the expansion controversy.
Dear Glenview Patch Editor:
At the last Willow Road Community Advisory Group (CAG) meeting in late
September, it seemed that Northfield stakeholders have had a noticeable
"change-of-heart" regarding this project.
The meeting focused on the Illinois Department of Transportation's proposed
toolbox of safety characteristics that the new and improved Willow Road
could feature, such as pedestrian countdown signals or curbed medians.
Throughout the discussion of each tool, there seemed to be a shift in
Northfield's long and loudly stated priority of safety, which we all want,
towards an increasing concern about "cosmetics".
I was surprised and a little bit confused that Northfield CAG members
appeared to change their concerns to how the safety features would look in
Northfield rather than how they would actually make the road safer for
pedestrians and drivers along their stretch of Willow Road.
One of the Northfield CAG members was concerned about the lighting along the
Willow Road corridor because it was mainly a residential area. Others were
concerned about the width of the proposed shared bike path and sidewalk,
suggesting we may not need a path at all if it would mean more concrete
along that stretch of Willow (i.e. less "green").
As a long-time resident of this area, I have attended multiple CAG meetings
over the last two years and I was impressed with both the number and quality
of safety tools that the state's department of transportation had presented
at the September meeting. I naturally assumed that Northfield would like
them as well, considering their historical stance of safety at any/all
costs, be it environmentally or aesthetically speaking.
As the process nears an end, the focus must continue to be centered on
building the safest alternative that provides a long-term solution.
November 10th is the last CAG meeting and it's imperative that all community
members attend to ensure that IDOT delivers a safer AND wider Willow Road
that benefits the entire region.
- John Nicolau
18-year Glenview resident
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