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Web letter by Karl Dietsch: State Boulevard straightening will benefit nearby neighborhoods

There has been much talk over the last four years in opposition to the widening of State Boulevard. The Brookview Neighborhood Association was established for the primary purpose of preserving the State Boulevard curve between Clinton and Wells streets. When the city continued designing a four-lane route to bypass the curve, the association made the adjoining area historic. The results have made the project last four years and counting, at great cost to the taxpayer.

What is important to note is that neighborhood representatives have not revealed the percentage of residences in favor versus those opposed. Many of us involved by proximity to the project on Oakridge Road want the following State Boulevard improvements:

The new bridge crossing Spy Run Creek will be seven feet higher and wider than the old bridge. There should be no future traffic blockages due to high water.

There will be two accesses (Oakridge and Westbrook) onto State Boulevard from the north neighborhood. At the present there are four accesses (Terrace, Oakridge, Eastbrook and Westbrook). This reduces two potential accident locations.

The new street has less curvature, allowing improved visibility for getting on or off State Boulevard.

The “old State Boulevard” curve becomes a low-traffic neighborhood street instead of the current high-volume neighborhood boulevard.

Most of the flood-plain houses will have been removed, adding to the value of the neighborhood.

The new four-lane street will allow better traffic flow during peak hours without increased speed.

Sadly, some neighborhood associations have signed on against the project without full factual disclosure. I am one who favors these needed improvements. I hope all neighborhood residents will get involved and bring this project to completion.

KARL DIETSCH

Fort Wayne

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