To the editor:
Re: "Former planners look to widen Vancouver streets for housing," Aug. 3.
Our culture is obsessed with thinness, but this is going too far.
My home is located on a West Side corner. A 13-foot wide boulevard abuts the 24-foot wide side street. Thirty-two years ago, this was a quiet neighbourhood with little vehicular traffic. Today it is noisy and busy with vehicular and foot traffic day and night. The side street provides two lanes of travel, but with parking on both sides often fully utilized, the travel portion reduces to one lane. The road itself is a washboard from ceaseless use over many years by huge trucks used in demolition and construction.
Something similar to my area would be created if part of a boulevard, together with part of a 66-foot wide road, were used to provide more housing. It is shortsighted. Congestion, pollution, noise and lack of privacy would be the result. Where houses are built, cars will follow. Cycling and/or transit, as alternatives, are not always practical. If anything is to be narrowed, let it be existing lots, not roadways.
Streets in those areas where Vancouver's unique beauty and tranquillity trump density should be retained. I cycle there, too, out of the way and danger of arterial traffic, enjoying the experience, not thinking of how to destroy it.
Darlene Peterson, Vancouver