Saturday, June 01, 2013

Here's your East Main Street Improvement Project website.

The website conveniently reminds us of the past meeting that no one outside of Main Street knew was occurring, so there's that.

Obviously, I favor the general notion. The idea is to tame a former state highway by calming traffic to enhance livability, and the point for all of us to remember is that if these principles are valid for Main Street, they're valid for every other residential street in New Albany -- because once we've made Main Street inconvenient for drag racing and heavy industrial truck usage, where does the city think those vehicles are going?

Answer: My street and yours (for all of us not residing on Main, which admittedly possesses a bit more lobbying clout than Oak).

Given the NSP expenditures to jump start the S. Ellen Jones neighborhood, imagine how an Elm Street conversion actually would act in concert with neighborhood stabilization, rather than work at cross purposes against it. But that's where we are. Main's already a strong neighborhood with a two-way street, which leads the other question to ask: Why is this costing so much, and why aren't we using Federal monies to defray the price tag?

The conceptual plan download is big and didn't react well with my laptop. Give it a shot and let me know, please.

East Main Street Improvement Project Website


w&la said...

Many have forgotten that the "S. Ellen Jones Neighborhood" didn't receive the full 6.7 million dollars - the NSP grant area was renamed "Midtown" and was much larger than the "S. Ellen Jones" neighborhood.

Wasn't the 6.7 million actually spread over an area that runs from 5th Street on the west to Vincennes on the east, and from Jackson Street on the north to Market on the south?

Wasn't the NSP Grant was written to address the "S. Ellen Jones" neighborhood, using those specific census tracts as evidence of need?

I seem to remember the area was renamed after the grant was awarded. That may have allowed the federal grant to be spent in a much larger area, not concentrated within the former "S. Ellen Jones" neighborhood.

The streets you mention as being in real need of two-way traffic calming (Elm and Spring) are within the NSP grant area.

w&la said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
w&la said...

Sorry - a correction:

The streets you mention as being in real need of two-way traffic calming (Elm and Spring) are within the NSP grant area as defined by the "Midtown" boundaries.

Jeff Gillenwater said...

Just an FYI: Beginning to refer to the SEJ/East Spring areas jointly as Midtown had no impact on the distribution of NSP funds.

The project area and grant application included both SEJ/ES areas from the beginning. It's basically census tract 704 except Main Street, owing to a lack of foreclosures and vacant properties on Main at the time. Likewise, a very small portion of census tract 705 between Fairview Cemetery on the north and Spring Street on the south was included due to some obvious property needs.

Elm, Spring, and Market are all in the NSP area.

A PDF map of the NSP area is here:

An interactive Indiana census tract map is here:

The continual confusion over SEJ/ES monikers was one of the reasons some of us sought a more unified identity.