Boulevard plan lives: Hear about it next week: UPDATE | Arkansas Blog

Boulevard plan lives: Hear about it next week: UPDATE

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The latest boulevard designs (above and below) by Tom Fennell, taking into account new data from consultant Norm Marshall.
  • The latest boulevard designs (above and below) by Tom Fennell, taking into account new data from consultant Norm Marshall.

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Though it appears that many folks have capitulated (well, what choice have we got, really, when it comes to plans by the Arkansas Highway and Transportation Department? This isn't exactly a democracy when it comes to highways) there are still folks pushing for a boulevard like the one designed by architect Tom Fennell rather than doubling the size of I-30.

At 7 p.m. May 17 at First United Methodist Church, Norm Marshall, the Smart Mobility consultant hired by the Arkansas Public Policy Panel, will present his research on the AHTD's so-called "6-lane plus 4 C/D" lane proposal, which is more accurately described as the 12-lane proposal, and compare it to alternatives. 

Marshall will also give a presentation at City Hall at 6 p.m. before the City Board of Directors, who, with the exception of Kathy Webb and perhaps one other director, will yawn and say, thanks, see you around.

UPDATE: Tom Fennell drops a line to let us know that he's redrawn the boulevard once again, using traffic data developed by Marshall that assumes a Chester Street bridge. Fennell asks, "So, if traffic projections show a true boulevard with a Chester Street bridge is a) better at dealing with congestion than an expanded freeway, b) costs much, much less, c) offers much more future economic, business, opportunities, and d) makes for a healthier, walkable downtown, why are our city leaders bending over backwards to support AHTD plans to expand the freeway?" Good question. Just because the AHTD is all-powerful doesn't mean you try to get them to do the right thing.



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