Letters to the Editor, Aug. 9-11, 2017
Submissions from Park Record readers
August 8, 2017
Kimball Junction circular duplicates existing services
Wednesday, I decided to test out the new “Kimball Junction Circular.” I rode my human-powered, carbon-free, bike to Bed, Bath & Beyond. Once there, I was able to wave down a 17-passenger, gas-powered van to take me to Smith's market. The ride was very enjoyable and roomy, as I was the first and only passenger on the van.
The ride from BB&B to Smiths took 4 1/2 minutes. The walk back to get my bike took 3 minutes. Yes, I timed it.
The driver was very nice and friendly, although underpaid. At $16 per hour he could not afford to live in Park City. We both struggled with a language barrier. And yet, we worked it out with smiles and hand signals. So, after having experienced this service first hand these are my thoughts.
This is a total waste of tax dollars. It does nothing to reduce traffic in Kimball Junction. There are 16 bus stops within the 1 1/2 mile loop between Redstone and the Tanger Outlets.
I’m sure that 97 percent of the residents in Summit County can walk one-tenth of a mile to the next bus stop. Park City Transit has a “mobility van” for those with extra needs. The mobility van was right at the BB&B stop after I walked back to get my bike.
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We have citizens in this county living from check to check. We have a food pantry in town. We have subsidized housing. And yet we are spending tax dollars give people like myself a free ride across the parking lot between stores! Tax dollars are being spent to get shoppers from one Outlet store to the next. We are doing this on top of an already free bus system that covers the exact same route! Really?
If the county wants to reduce traffic problems at Malfuntion Junction they should start by fixing the turning lanes. Adding vans, empty or otherwise, to the mix does not reduce traffic. Using accepted traffic measuring methods, the county has added 104 cars to Kimball Junction every day. I seriously believe we have hired someone who is trying to justify their expensive salary and education.
I can’t wait to see how those vans and drivers do in the winter snows.
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Reader has lost patience with Utah Congressman
Dear Senators Hatch, Lee and Representative Bishop:
I've written you letters (most unanswered) in the past trying to state my policy positions politely and respectfully with reasoned suggestions. Gloves off, time to vent.
I believe that Russia's involvement in our past election and the Trump campaign's possible collusion with Russia is a major priority. As a veteran of the Cold War involved in military intelligence that targeted the Soviet Union anyone downplaying Russia's adversarial role in today's geopolitical universe is extremely naive and short sighted.
A recent poll for the Economist stated that, among Republicans, Vladimir Putin has a higher approval rating than Barack Obama. Patriotism's new low or racism's new high? Whoever those people are I don't want them in my foxhole. For anyone to play politics about this threat is unconscionable. Listen to our military leaders and intelligence community and get your head out of the sand. Perhaps the line has been too finely drawn between giving 'comfort' to the President or to the enemy. Your position on this matter is disturbing and shameful.
Your lack of support for the Paris Climate Accord is also disturbing, as are your related positions on global warming and renewable energy. Your thinking reeks of fossil fuel contamination and all the 'goodies' it brings to your campaign coffers. Obviously, you chose not to heed the climate science facts. Beijing will clean up its air before Salt Lake if your views on climate change prevail.
Please stop calling the Affordable Care Act 'Obama Care.' You don't call Social Security 'Roosevelt Care' and Medicare and Medicaid 'Johnson Care'. It's politically transparent and a dog whistle akin to 'Hillary Care.' And speaking of Hillary, have you forgotten that the ACA was the Republican alternative to 'Hillary Care' in the 90s? Have you forgotten that Mitt Romney as Governor of Massachusetts adopted Hillary Care? All this tinkering at the extremes to an unpopular alternative designed to take away healthcare for millions?
Good luck with this re-election albatross if the proposals you support become law. Want to save money and improve healthcare quality? Eliminate private health insurers and provide Medicare for all. Nixon wanted it. The majority of the Western World has some form of it and it works better for them than what we have. Oh, you know someone in Canada who had to wait three months for a knee replacement. Please, spare me!
Get on with tax reform, infrastructure enhancements, job training for today and tomorrow's economy and raising middle-income wages. Stop being the spineless species Republicans have morphed into and try statesmanship for a change. Do the people's business before fat cat fundraising and running for re-election. Your disregard for working people is symbolic of what's wrong with government. Your unconditional support of the President is an affront to people who believe that competency, morality and character matter. Unfortunately, you are proof that we get the government we deserve.
Your disenchanted constituent,
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Dana Williams is all about 'heart'
It’s a mayoral election in our hometown this year and we have three well-qualified candidates running for Mayor. When it comes to all of the issues presented before us, the three of them seem to be on the same page with some discrepancies on reaching a solution. Such is nature.
The decision for me, as a constituent, a friend and a colleague of two of the three, is proving difficult. Park City, Utah is one of the raddest places to live in America if you are into this sort of active, outdoor lifestyle. And with what has happened with City and County government over the last few years has been nothing but extraordinary! Free public transportation, open space purchases, land and business development, and “affordable” housing to name a few.
But then there are the struggles that go on with any “small town” which, Park City is far from these days.
Traffic, pollution, non-affordable housing, low paying jobs, high rents, climate change and migrant workers are all at the forefront of most of our issues. But there is also one issue that stands out for me that nobody is talking about: ego.
Park City has been recognized with numerous accolades: Best Small Town, First fully electric Bike Share Program, Best place to live, Greatest Snow on Earth (Sorry, somewhere in Canada has us on that) and so many other chest thumping, make momma proud moments that it really has become, a huge issue.
We don’t want big name brands on Main Street but have sold out to so many in the name of profit. We want small-town charm but then hold events bringing in 40,000 people almost every freaking weekend. We want to remain humble but try to be the first in everything and shout it loud. We also don’t want to be egregious but then propose spending hundreds of thousands of dollars to use Tesla cars for micro transit.
Park City is awesome, there is no doubt about it and what has been accomplished since I moved here in March of 2006 has been amazing to watch, except for all of the second-home monstrosities that have been built soaking up so many valuable resources but hey, let’s try for an energy conservation program award of $5 million dollars by building more of these while not changing our wasteful habits.
We all want this amazing stuff and we all want to live a privileged lifestyle. What I would like to see from a leader is someone who stands up for the common man, the lower-class man and the minority. I want a leader who will take the time to talk with you at the common-man level instead of having to be in the good ol’ boys club. I want someone who is an activist, a fighter and a person who leads with the heart and not their ego because it’s not about head. It’s not about ego. And it’s not about image. It’s about heart. And that is why I support Dana Williams for Mayor of Park City.
Alex Stoy, M.S., local business owner
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Good Samaritans helped save a life
On the last day of July, my brother Phil suffered a heart attack at Rotary Park. He is now recovering, thanks to the good Samaritans who jumped in and helped me with CPR until the medics arrived. I'd also like to thank the police officer who took my bike back to my house and the rental bike back to Cole Sport.
I'm proud of my town, where we still take care of each other.
Marianne Cone Chaplin
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Newpark neighborhood besieged by speeding bikes
The Newpark Townhome Association, located in Kimball Junction, met this past weekend. One of the issues brought up at our meeting was an almost unanimous concern about the increased trail traffic and the excessive speed of cyclists using the public trail system that meanders through our residential area.
Let me say that again, "a residential area."
We love the trail. It is a wonderful multi-use asset. But the recent increase in traffic and the excessive speeds of bicyclists coming through our residential area generated our safety concerns. It is just a matter of time before a pet, a child or an adult is involved in a major accident. My wife and I have a small, older dog and other than early morning or late nights it is no longer safe to walk her on the trail. We are not quick enough to get out of the way of the high-speed cyclists.
Bicyclists need to understand that this is a residential area; we are not a Tour de France racetrack. There are other areas of the trail more amenable to high-speed racing. They are racing around blind corners and travel faster than the automobile traffic on our neighborhood streets. Most local leisure bikes travel at reasonable speeds and have bells. Most speed cyclists do not have bells and they wouldn't have time to use them anyway.
The response from our board was that the trail does not belong to us. We also brought it up with the Newpark Homeowners Association representative who felt we should express our concerns to the appropriate city and county organizations. One suggestion was to install speed bumps, but I do not think that they are appropriate and can be a hazard to the bikers.
I would like to recommend the following: 1) Divide the trail down the middle with half for a bike lane and half for a walking lane, 2) Paint each side with symbols for bikes and walkers and 3) Install signs at both entrances to our residential areas (Fox Point and Newpark) and at blind curves; notifying cyclists to maintain a reasonable speed of no more than 10 mph and to be alert for pedestrians and pets.
As a Family Medicine physician, my motto is "an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure." I sincerely hope the appropriate city and county agencies will take notice of our concerns and take action BEFORE someone gets seriously injured.
Dr. Jeffrey M. Edmondson, M.D.
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If your dog poops, pick it up
Today my family and I went for a hike from Guardsman’s Pass parking to Bloods Lake. It’s a shame how many dog poo bags we found along the way. I think that if you have a dog you have the obligation to carry out the bags and get rid of them in a proper way.
Trails are not Dumpsters. I counted my hike more than 20 bags, plus other not-bagged dog waste. I pick up some of them but please be more responsible
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