Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Nighswander LTE: Mall expansion at the expense of safety

Letter to the Editor

From:  Vicki Nighswander MAT,MPH
             Sarasota, FL 34233

Commissioners Chose Expansion vs Safety

All County Commissioners received an email prior to their Benderson expansion meeting requesting a postponement until they have time to review the annual crash report.  I was told the crash report would be completed in May.  At a public hearing one commissioner stood up and noted that safety was of primary importance but yet existing crash data isn’t included in development decisions.  We are no longer living in a small community.  We are experiencing the consequences of growth. Modifying roads, intersections, bridges and lights after the fact isn’t safety first thinking.  The vote for the Benderson expansion, among others, and not paying attention to existing data doesn’t show safety concern for the Commissioner’s constituency. There are Band-Aid components of the approval, but ultimately our safety wasn’t a primary consideration.  Hope we all remember how these Commissioners voted for development expansion vs constituent safety for the next election. 

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