Once again the Utica Common Council has shown its lack of good sense by attempting to undermine the state Department of Transportation’s proposed North-South Arterial project in west Utica. In a 5-4 vote, the council voted this past week to urge the DOT to consider keeping Sunset Avenue open where it intersects with the arterial.
This should not be viewed as an "Arterial project," but, rather, a "project to close Sunset Ave and Warren St at the arterial, and close Lincoln Ave. at Court St."
A change of perspective from "commuter-orientation" to "resident orientation" is needed to understand the true damage that the State's proposal will do to the city. These changes will disrupt traffic patterns that have been established for perhaps 150 years, and will be on top of other disruptions the State has done through other rounds of arterial-making.
Simply put, the state proposes to sacrifice the proper functioning of Utica's local street system to make it easier for people to get to and from the suburbs.
That is wrong, and the Council is right in taking a stand that protects Utica's interests.