Plan has city heading down the wrong road

City should abandon idea of one-way traffic and parallel parking on Lakeshore Drive

I am shocked and furious after learning the waterfront revitalization planners want to change Lakeshore Drive. It’s another case of dumb and dumber. First, to take out angled parking will eliminate a lot of the beach parking. With the current angled parking, you can pull into your spot and enjoy the lake view without turning your head 90 degrees like parallel parking.

The Peach City Beach Cruise would be cut in half for lack of parking. Parallel parking would be chaos. How many seniors or youth for that matter can parallel park? And how backed up would traffic be if it took someone two or three tries to parallel park?

To grass all the sand areas they want to will eliminate a lot of sunbathers. To have Lakeshore a one-way street will put huge traffic increases on residential Churchill and Alexander streets as well as back laneways for drivers wanting the shortest route back the opposite way. Lakeshore Drive traffic routes are perfect for tourism the way they are. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

Lakeshore Drive (Sunset Strip) is the best car cruising strip in Western Canada. Why do we want to screw that up with a one-way street and parallel parking? As for the cyclists (and I am one of them), they have the whole town to ride in. The bike lanes on Government Street are seldom used (I drive it daily and live one block from it). The biggest and major bicycle hazard on Lakeshore is the four-wheeled rental bikes that take up lanes, slow traffic, have extremely poorly lighting from behind and no headlights.

This is the biggest hazard on Lakeshore. They are a lot of fun for the tourists and I personally rented one a few weeks ago with my guests and then realized how dangerous they really are. Give them better lighting and keep them off the busy streets, especially Lakeshore. Without them on Lakeshore, bicycle traffic will be safer for all without changing traffic patterns or angle parking.

The biggest revitalization should be of the brain cells of whatever idiots came up with these lame ideas. These so-called planners must seldom use Lakeshore Drive and do their “surveys” at 8 a.m. or in the off-season. Try getting feedback from people who actually use Lakeshore Drive and the beach frequently. I use the beach and Lakeshore Drive a minimum 100 days of the year.

There seems to be more effort to destroy tourism with ideas that hurt tourism than help it — zoning changes like the water park, small motels, RV parks, campgrounds and everything that caters to lower/middle-class income tourism. What about the downtown revitalization? It should be first. A quick fix is to eliminate parking meters on Martin, Ellis and joining side streets and turn Main Street and Martin Street back into two-way streets, making access and free parking readily available for shoppers. So many towns/cities have taken this approach — what are we waiting for?

Beautify Lakeshore Drive but leave the street and parking the way it is.

Clifford Martin

 

Penticton