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Merrimon Widening Comment

Eric: I am writing to urge you to reconsider the proposal to widen Merrimon Avenue in Asheville. I live near Merrimon Avenue and use it on a daily basis

From: Eric Nelson
Date: Thu, Jan 25, 2018 at 11:33 AM
Subject: Merrimon Avenue Proposed Changes
To: chood@ncdot.gov

Dear Mr. Hood:

I am writing to urge you to reconsider the proposal to widen Merrimon Avenue in Asheville. I live near Merrimon Avenue and use it on a daily basis. It’s not my favorite road in Asheville because of the speed of the cars, but the current proposal will make a not-great situation even worse. I walk my dog on the greenway every day and cross Merrimon at W.T. Weaver Blvd. Crossing Merrimon is scary enough as is, but it would be a true nightmare if the the road were even wider.

Asheville is unique. That’s why I moved here. I love the neighborhoods, the parks, the walkability of almost all areas of the city. I love the fact that people care about the city.

The current proposal will turn a key road in the city into a freeway, impacting businesses and the quality of life of every city resident. It’s not just the citizens of the city that will be affected. The proposal will also affect how tourists view the city. As you know, tourism is our economic engine. People come here for the ambiance, the trees, the mountains, the fresh air, the unique shops and restaurants, all of which will be negatively affected by the proposal.

Please, don’t “improve” Merrimon Avenue in the fashion that is proposed. We don’t need more cars moving faster. We need incentives to ride bikes, walk, slow down and enjoy the city;

Please, follow the state rules for community input;

Please, propose alternatives that fully consider the environment and quality of life;

Please, work with City Council to ensure any adopted plan is consistent with existing vision plans;

Please, consider left turn lights at the Edgewood Rd. intersection;

Please, prioritize handicap-accessible sidewalks on the west side of Merrimon and highly visible crosswalks at Edgewood Rd., Chatham Road, and between Edgewood Knoll Road and Edgewood Rd.

Thank you,

Eric Nelson