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Road to ruin

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Posted: Wednesday, September 26, 2012 12:07 am | Updated: 11:30 am, Mon Jan 21, 2013.

Letter to the editor

Sept. 19, 2012

To the editor:

The Creamer’s Field wildlife and wetland refuge is a unique place within Fairbanks for the birds, cranes, geese, ducks, coyotes, foxes and moose that roam within its boundaries. In addition, it is a widely used recreational site for our local and visiting mushers, ski-jorers, skiers, hikers and bird watchers.

It’s a real gem for Fairbanks — it’s our Central Park of the North. I haven’t heard that New Yorkers want to build a by-way through their Central Park because it would save maybe five minutes to get from Point A to Point B during rush hour.

The Sept. 6 article said this project was buried within the general obligation bond with construction to start in 2013. Well, I’m sorry, but from the looks of it, the construction has already begun. Is it convenience or coincidence that a peat and topsoil business has cleared trees and brush and opened up a wide swath into the area right where the Department of Transportation wants to begin a road?

What about the traffic and congestion on the Steese Highway between Airport Way and Johansen Expressway? It has a rush hour and a lunch and after-school congestion issue but DOT isn’t looking to widen or provide alternate routes or round-abouts through that section.

It just seems there are other areas that could be improved. If DOT’s goal is to ease traffic congestion, then widen the Steese to three lanes up to Farmers Loop and have three lanes of Johansen merge onto the Steese. Wouldn’t it be nice to have some sidewalks and bike paths along the Old Steese going into Box World, a.k.a, the retail area? Could they synchronize the lights to help traffic move more smoothly through the area? What about the Trainor Gate Road to Old Steese intersection?

I think people would love to see improvements within Box World, but I guess that’s not DOT’s jurisdiction. Bottom line, there just seems to be a lot more areas that could be improved upon instead of ruining a unique and precious piece of Fairbanks.

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