Council should say no to Landon on Whiteview lane reduction

Also in Letters to the Editor: Deputies did 'amazing job' when helping woman with autism at crash site
By: 
Feb. 6, 2018

Council should say no to Landon on Whiteview change

Dear Editor:

The Palm Coast City Council is considering narrowing Whiteview Parkway from the existing two lanes in each direction from Pritchard Drive to U.S. 1 to one lane in each direction. This is an example of how virtuoso Landon plays City Council. What is being discussed is how to do the project and not whether to do the project. When I was writing a Decision Analysis for Department of Public Welfare in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, I was reminded that doing nothing was always an option. Apparently, that is not an option in this matter and not an option in other decisions coming before the council.

Reducing the two lanes in each direction will result in four intersections having stop signs to control entering only one lane onto Whiteview Parkway. Observing the way people currently obey stop signs causes me to think there will be more accidents. Automobiles travelling east to west or west to east currently have a lane to swerve to if someone blows a stop sign. If the change is implemented, that option is not available.

If there is an increase in accidents, will a future City Council need to decide going back to two lanes in each direction?

Another reason to do nothing is the cost reported to be in the “neighborhood” of $1 million. What happens if the project goes forward and is half completed and we have moved out of the “neighborhood”? 

A final consideration is the growth our community is experiencing. We all can see new houses going up everywhere, and each new home brings at least one vehicle. This being the case, why would you want to reduce traffic flow on a major east/west artery? 

City Council needs to think this through and say no to the city manager and save in the “neighborhood” of $1 million.

Perhaps City Council should consider a plan that would not be permanent and would allow a return to the existing traffic pattern without great expense. What could be done is to close off the south side lanes to vehicle traffic by placing barriers at both ends. These lanes could be the walking and bike paths. The existing north side lanes would be divided by “Jersey barriers” and open for vehicle traffic.

This solution would achieve the same outcome at far less costs and allow a return to the existing traffic patterns should that need arise.

Council should be concerned about the maintaining and improving the current infrastructure. Here are some things that need attention that I am aware of: those axle breaking washouts at certain intersections, walking path repairs(St. Joe walkway by the river), a culvert wash out on Wynnfield, swale maintenance, sidewalks where there is high number of walkers and bikers. City Council, fix what is broken.

John Brady

Palm Coast

 

Deputies did great job helping woman with autism at crash

The following letter was sent as an email to Flagler County Sheriff Rick Staly, and copied to the Observer:

Good morning, Sheriff Staly:

I am emailing you to tell you of an amazing experience that happened last night involving at least two of your deputies.

My son and my autistic daughter were stopped at a stoplight on Palm Coast Parkway at I-95 when they were rear-ended by a truck, pushing them into the vehicle in front of them. My son was startled, but otherwise OK. My daughter was scared, and, because of her autism, escalated emotionally.

When the first deputy arrived on the scene (they did not get his name), he tried to console her and let her know she was safe and that he was here to protect her and help in any way. Unknown to him, my wife was on the phone trying to console her, too, as I was on my way to the accident scene.

My wife and I are overwhelmed with the care and concern that was shown to my autistic daughter in the midst of a very stressful situation.

We have trusted that our deputies are well trained to professionally handle the different situations that they will encounter, but you cannot teach compassion and empathy. These are traits that you either have or not. The two deputies that responded could not have responded to our daughter’s need any better.

I cannot thank you and your team enough for the amazing job that our sheriff’s deputies are doing for this county. I have been impressed since the election by the incredible positive influence that you have had in placing the deputies in a positive role in our community.

Your public service announcements, safety reminders via the signs strategically placed around the community, your radio spots and reminders to live and be safe, have really started to make a difference in the life of the community. But, while all of this is fantastic, the professional and sincere service of our deputies really hits home when my own family is involved in a crisis situation.

Please pass this letter of appreciation along to the two deputies that responded to the scene and know that my wife, family and church family support your efforts to make our community a safe and better place to live.

God bless you and the Flagler County Sheriff’s Office. 

Kevin Lautar, 
Senior Pastor, First Baptist
Church of Palm Coast

 

Print newspaper symbolizes connection to local environment

Dear Editor:

Printed newspaper or no printed newspaper, that is the question!

Wow ... I had a visceral reaction when I read your question on Page 2 of the Feb. 1 edition. My answer is a resounding “yes!” There is no other answer. 

The important thing that must be remembered is that there is still a generation (or two) that did not grow up in a technical world and who do not know how to navigate the computer world (and/or cannot afford to do so).

We cannot keep on thinking that this population can learn how use a computer. Or thinking, “Hey, they can use computers at the library.” Remember, some people can no longer leave their homes. In these cases, that printed word is still viable as a vehicle to the outside world.

And then, I am in a different category. I have used computers since 1979. I use iBooks sometimes instead of buying a book; I also enjoy our online local news on FlaglerLive (as well as the online Observer). In the end, though, I still have a bit of excitement when I open the Palm Coast Observer every Thursday morning. It cannot be replaced. For me, the feel and smell of the paper paper bring to mind a physical connection to our city and county.

In addition, oftentimes, I’ve been thankful for an advertisement because the Observer is where I have learned about a new business that just happens to be a business whose services I desperately needed.

So, thank you. Don’t despair; please keep it going. It truly symbolizes a connection to our local environment.

Nancy Remmers

Palm Coast