Letter to the Editor: Reducing Maple Road Lanes 'Would Create a Nightmare'
'The commute is bad enough already,' says resident who also cites downtown retail impact.
This letter was received by Birmingham Patch Editor Laura Houser and discusses a proposal to add two curbside bike lanes and eliminate one vehicle lane on part of East Maple Road. This letter was originally emailed to several neighbors by a Birmingham resident and small business owner. It is posted with the writer's permission.
The proposed traffic reduction on Maple would create a nightmare for daily commuters and certainly cannot possibly support businesses in downtown Birmingham.
I question if this concept is applicable to that area of Birmingham. I am not against he concept, merely the location. For instance:
- Eton and Maple is already messy with that very old railroad bridge.
- Westbound drivers at Coolidge and Maple would have to make a decision at that intersection about avoiding congestion ahead. That would force more traffic onto Big Beaver or 14 Mile, heading westbound.
- On Big Beaver, the railroad bridge just west of Adams already causes traffic backups. Assuming you can get past that issue, which is pretty big, it's better than 14 Mile from then on and traffic can get back to Maple from Lahser.
- On 14 Mile, it is hard to imagine any more of a mess at 14 Mile and Coolidge going westbound because of the railroad bridge at that location. Assuming traffic gets past that area, going westbound on 14 Mile to get back to Maple would require using Southfield Road. I can't imagine we want to add to northbound traffic there.
As you can see in all cases, the railroad is our problem and therefore goes back to raising the question: Is this concept applicable for that area of Birmingham? Would bike lanes be better elsewhere in Birmingham? You would have to figure out how to rework the railroad bridge areas first before even thinking of making changes to Maple between Eton and Woodward.
If you add to this the possible revenue loss to downtown merchants, I'm not sure this is a good idea for this location. It would force commuters around Birmingham and not through it.
The commute is bad enough already without having to create a hindrance.
The viewpoints in this letter are those of the writers, and Patch is not responsible for any ideas portrayed as facts. For questions and clarifications, please leave a comment below or contact editor Laura Houser at email@example.com or 248-534-9780.