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Re: SG-W:/ Pittsfield land use in headlines again


If it is any consolation, I think that these road connection issues are
some of the hardest planning issues to deal with and ones most boards
handle poorly. From everything that I've read, your board made the right
decision.  Because these road connections typically only appear to
affect the people in the existing subs, most boards act as if it doesn't
matter if the roads are closed and they do so because that's what the
residents ask for. They never seem to take into consideration the
potential for safety and traffic problems.  Also, you made an excellent
point about the problem that would be created by forcing bus traffic to
go in a circuitous route.  We are facing this issue in Novi too and I'm
hopefully that we maintain the traffic connections to local schools to
avoid that kind of situation.

This is no idle issue.  There is a large mobile home park in Novi that
only has 2 entrances onto a mile road.  These entrances are only a short
distance apart.  A number of years ago, the park was struck by a
tornado, killing one person and injuring others.  The emergency response
was delayed, even though a fire station is less than a mile away,
because of downed power lines and trees that blocked access to the
park.  While the delay didn't directly affect the casualty list, it very
well could have led to a tragic situation.  On the flip side, in one
instance where we did require a connection between an existing sub and a
new senior citizen housing complex, we have yet to see evidence of the
cut-through traffic and back-ups that residents feared.  As this is my
neighborhood, I know that the residents were upset with the decision at
that time.  But, as time has gone on, none of them have raised the issue
as a problem, probably because no problem exist.  Trust me, they would
tell me if there was one!

Newspapers are not know for getting the story right so don't sweat the

Andrew Mutch

Christina Lirones wrote:

> Hi everyone! Rober98 has chosen an interesting pair of articles
> recently to share with the group - ones that are fed by our political
> opponents in Pittsfield. Could you please just let me know your name,
> Rober 98? It doesn't show on my e mail. Without offending my friend
> Peri, I would like to point out that this article had some
> misperceptions. Craig Welch, the Centennial developer's spokesperson,
> is wrong by several hundred thousand dollars in his estimate of the
> road cost. He also seems to imply that the developer may choose not to
> fulfill the obligations of the approved site plan by failing to build
> the road to the southern border. This is incorrect. Also incorrect is
> the statement that the Schools are opposed to the roads. The Schools
> do agree the roads are needed, all of them, and are building them now.
> The one road in question was planned as part of a nearly 400 home
> conjoined subdivision stretching from Michigan Ave. to Textile Road.
> This is not a new road. What happened was that the Schools bought an
> unbuilt section of this large conjoined sub, with its approved site
> plan, and the residents are justifiably concerned about the planned
> and approved roads connecting to a different use.  However, our Board
> made the difficult decision not to alter the approved site plan for
> the sub to the north, Centennial Farms, though the residents wanted
> the road to the south eliminated. The Board felt that on balance it
> was far too dangerous to allow 218 homes to be built with only two
> routes of ingress and egress, both onto Textile Road. The high density
> was allowed in this sub based on connectivity to the south; to
> eliminate the connectivity to the south would seem to require a
> complimentary reduction in the density of the development, and a
> different site plan and Planning Commission review, which the
> developer has not as yet proposed.  The Board followed the advice of
> our planners, supported by the school's traffic study, and we support
> the Road Commission's decision that the road to the south from
> Centennial Farms/Park must be built for the safety of the subdivision.
> While only a few houses have been built now, the traffic impact at
> build out for this very large sub will strain the outlets on Textile;
> I can only imagine the chaos, not to mention danger, if Textile was
> closed for any reason. It also seemed dangerous to require busses and
> people driving to the school to go out onto Textile, turn onto State,
> and turn again into the School, a long trip to a school a short
> distance away. It just seemed on balance too dangerous not to build
> the roads as planned. The concern about traffic from the school pales
> beside the danger of building 218 homes with only two outlets on
> Textile. I'm not sure this is a major smartgrowth issue that is really
> relevant to the listserv. It's a sad situation that the developer and
> a former planning commissioner are actively exploiting for political
> purposes.  Christina Lirones

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