Home > Crank, Editorial > BLA Makes The Ticker

BLA Makes The Ticker

West Boardman Lake Avenue still seems inevitable and a divisive idea. Today The Business News’ daily blast, The  Ticker reported on the future meetings on April 25th (City Commission study session), May 3rd (planning commission) and May 9th (CC regular meeting). The latter is where the City Commission will vote on the property purchases. The article also offered a brief on some of the remaining concerns.

If the comments are accurate, the City Commission will likely vote down the purchase of Copy Central on 8th Street and then move forward with studying the remaining options with the Avenue. It needs to be noted, the only concept that required the Copy Central property was the very well received roundabout intersection presented at the last input session. However, also at the last input session was a strong voice for needing to see proof that the road is needed.

It appears to remain an assumption by the supporters of the BLA project that the BLA will relieve motorized traffic off of Cass St. and Union St. There has been no proof of this, it’s an assumption. It may be right, it may be wrong. We just don’t know.

To their credit, Mayor Bzdok and the City Commission are still asking questions regarding the impact. As reported in The Ticker, some of those questions are:

  • How would the new road affect north-south traffic and east-west traffic across town?
  • How would it impact Eighth Street traffic?
  • Would the new road merely invite more traffic?

I’d add, the impact on 14th St. and a discussion about how much of a reduction is wanted on Cass St.? 14th is already one of our worse streets and an earlier goal was expressed by supporters for Cass St. traffic to be reduced to 3,000 VPD. What if the road only takes the VPD down to 10,000? Is that a success? Also, there is an impact on other residents, the Old Town Condo residents being the primary ones, but also potentially residents on Lake Ave. (one of the design options) and the hundreds of residents who use this corridor for non-motorized East West accessibility–I saw no road designs at the input sessions that alleviated this concern.

Inevitably with the construction of the W. Boardman Lake Ave. will be a severe reduction of quality of life for residents at the Old Town Condominiums (left). Many of whom have backyards a few meters away from the road's edge.


I’m afraid a road is being designed while the debate is still hanging in the air to the need. The City needs to realize, if they move forward with the road plan, which is their choice and prerogative, they will still require public input during the entire design process. The risk of creating another Division St. is simply too looming.

See you at the future meetings.

(Further reading: A search of MyWHaT for posts that mention West Boardman Lake Ave.)

EXTRA: Also, tonight’s City Commission meeting will likely result in a vote on the citizen led traffic calming program, a contract for the removal of the Brownbridge dam, and implementation of the police workload analysis that promises to save the City a good chunk of change over the next several years. The mayor has introductions to those items at the Plan for TC website.

  1. Mike Grant
    April 18, 2011 at 1:01 pm

    Which ever way this issue is resolved, or not resolved, we in the community (especially those of us who don’t want to see the current proposed version of BLA built) owe Gary a debt of gratitude for the hard work he’s done in keeping the community educated and informed on what’s at stake here. Thanks Gary!

  2. R. Shimel
    April 18, 2011 at 3:23 pm

    Mike, gratitude is always appreciated but cash is a lot more important. Its way past time that readers/commenter’s on this blog ponied up a little dough to go with their “atta boys.” While it’s easy to identify me as one of Gary’s largest critics what’s not so easy to see is that I’m also one of his largest supporters; both in spirit and cash. After following My Wheels for a year I concluded that Gary was going to do a lot more good for the community than harm. It is a bet I would take every day of the week. I gave $250 in December. I’m not suggesting that’s the number for others, but, come on, $25. won’t hurt anyone. Gary deserves more than compliments from all of you!

  3. April 18, 2011 at 3:59 pm

    Comments, compliments, criticisms, and contributions… Thank you both and to everyone who has contributed to the work of MyWHaT.

    If you’d like to follow through on Shimel’s ringing endorsement that I will likely “do a lot more good for the community than harm” you can contribute via Paypal or send me a message and let’s meet to discuss. I’m also still taking underwriters who are displayed at the sidebar–the 2011 change out for underwriters will be in May.

  4. Katie
    April 18, 2011 at 8:03 pm

    Hey, did anybody else watch the first part of City Commission meeting tonight? Sure sounded like they are leaning quite strongly to letting the option expire, thus not buying Copy Central……which would be required for a roundabout. Bifoss essentially said that since that design option (roundabout) is not feasible, the main conversation at their meeting next week, April 25, would focus on a discussion of other design alternatives. Nothing was said about discussion of whether or not to even build the road. They are just discussing design alternatives and some other problems (presumably those issues Gary outlines above). Maybe that does imply an open, honest appraisal of the whole project in it’s entirety…….but….. it also sounds more than a little bit like a done deal, to me. Other folks have thoughts?

  5. Brian H
    April 18, 2011 at 9:12 pm

    I didn’t watch the meeting tonight, but when the option was taken last fall, the City Manager said that purchasing Copy Central would allow for other intersection alignment options — a roundabout was not mentioned. Some comments that I heard were that perhaps spending $575,000 (plus demo and loss of revenue) for a seemingly unpopular project may not be such a good idea. If I had to place a bet on a road or an open and honest debate, my money is on the road.

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