If you read the last post on the three plans for Erie and Erie County, you could have followed the links to see what was in each one. It’s understandable if you didn’t because it’s not the kind of reading that keeps you on the edge of your seat, but if you want to know where your tax dollars might be headed, they’re actually quite interesting. Two of them were written by people very familiar with the area and the problems that exist, one of them, Emerge 2040, is so bad we should demand our money back and wouldn’t you know it, it was, by far, the most expensive.
In two previous articles, we noted how Emerge 2040 was really a thinly disguised plan generated by the federal government to solve problems Erie and Erie County do not have. In essence, a set of guidelines from Washington, D.C. was mildly customized and presented as a plan just for us, but if you look closely, you quickly see recommendations based on these assumptions that simply don’t apply to our area or are wildly off base.
Two statements, only one can be true
Longer distances between residences and jobs lead to increased commuting and traffic congestion
streets were redesigned in the mid-20th Century to handle automobile volumes that either never materialized or that no longer exist
One says we have a problem with traffic congestion, while the other says we have streets too wide because we have so little traffic, … so which is it, and which do you think reflects reality? If you think number two is closer to the truth and number one is nonsense, you’re not alone. If an easily observable item like this is so far off the mark, it’s logical to call into question all of the rest of the expert opinion in Emerge 2040 on matters that require deeper study and more thoughtful conclusions.
One is not like the others
Both Erie Refocused and the Erie Downtown Master Plan seem written by people very familiar with Erie and filled with details of the city and it’s neighborhoods, very reassuring since the studies are meant to stimulate thinking and guide the city as it moves forward.
Emerge 2040, on the other hand, is filled with dense bureaucratic prose that highlights buzzwords like livable, green and connected, but gives you the impression the planners were trying to justify their fee while hiding a map for massive government intrusion into our local community. It’s not really a study or a plan, it’s an agenda. It’s unfortunate our county executive is such a big booster of its “vision” because taxpayers will be poorly served.