Poor planning for Village proposal
I have voted against the Village at Crystal River project for one reason: It is bad design. There are other issues that people are writing about: the public improvement fee, maybe a Wendy’s (I, for one, will choose Fat Belly over a chemburger any day). So I will focus my letter on a different issue – the planning process, or lack thereof, and the resultant design that we will have to live with if it is approved.
The first glaring planning problem is the outdated reliance on the automobile. It is yet another proposal with buildings plopped down in a sea of parking with bogus “streets” between. It makes Glenwood Meadows look like Mayberry RFD. It has nothing to do with what is right for the site or Carbondale. It is a textbook reaction to bad planning principles.
This is not the developer’s fault, I might add. The town of Carbondale needs to radically change, not update, its way of planning large projects on our most valued and accessible land. Do we really want the project to revolve around parking when we are trying to encourage other forms of transportation? Does it make sense to build a roundabout on Highway 133 that does not align with a future connection with Eighth Street?
This is ludicrous, two potential roundabouts a few feet apart. Maybe that connection with Eighth Street won’t be built, but isn’t it prudent to plan for the possibility? Does it make sense to put the market at the north end of the site, away from Main Street, requiring most people to drive or ride up to Main and then down the highway to the roundabout to access the market? Why not place it across from the current City Market, where inexplicably they have placed housing (that we don’t need)?
The developer says, in his defense, that is what he was told the community wanted (road map), but does it make sense to use some road map that is years old? What concerns me is that the town my family has called home for 12 years has no reliable, common-sense approach to how Carbondale will face its future. I am against poorly managed and poorly planned growth. I am for growth in a conscientious and sustainable way.
Follow an old, outdated road map and you will surely get lost.
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