Seeley Swan Pathfinder
April 1, 1999
by Patricia Swan Smith
The Highway 83 Committee has met twice since the March 15th Community Council meeting. Our last meeting held on the afternoon of the 29th ended in what may be a plan that will give Seeley businesses and residents a viable highway plan that meets most of the concerns voiced at the Mar. 15th meeting and in personal interviews made by committee members.
Jim Weaver and John Marron from the Department of Transportation (DOT) and Matt Ulberg from the engineering firm DJ&A attended this meeting.
We presented a plan that was put together by the committee using the information gathered at the March 15th meeting as well as comments from interviews with business owners and residents over the past two weeks.
The committee is holding a public meeting on April 5th at the Community Hall at 7 p.m. to discuss the plan we presented to the DOT on the 29th to make sure that we are representing what everyone wants and/or expressed. If this plan is agreed to, we also need to work out a couple of details pertaining to the lighting.
At Monday's meeting, we were told by Jim Weaver from the DOT that the plan we presented to him Monday afternoon would in fact be acceptable if the residents were in agreement at the April 12th meeting.
The plan we presented did not include any curbs. It shows three lanes from the Valley Market north to "B" street, then a change to two lanes from "B" street north through the remaining part of Seeley. Lighting was included from Cedar Lane to Riverview Drive.
Controlled access would be designated by the existing and/or new barrow pits, paved driveways and landscaping agreed to by each individual business owner.
There are still some who have voiced concerns about having three lanes at Locust Lane and School Lane because they feel the speed will be increased in those areas due to the turn lane. We also have to remember that the speed limit in those areas are not part of the highway plan, and while we can discuss our thoughts about a preferred speed limit, we have to understand that they are separate issues and cannot be part of any recommendations or suggestions for the project.
There are also some questions about the proposed walk-way. While many of these questions may not be answered due to the fact that the plans have not been drawn up, we will be able to record questions, suggestions and concerns about the walk-way.
We need to discuss these issues, the plan the committee has put together and any other issues and make sure we are in agreement for the final presentation on April 12th when the Department of Transportation holds its public meeting. Jim Weaver said that if we were not in agreement at that public meeting, the planning for the highway would be thrown back into his hands and we would have to take that plan.
We have worked peacefully through a very controversial proposal, and we are very close to a solution that seems to be one that will make everyone happy. Please make sure to attend the meeting on April 5th and April 12th. These decisions will affect Seeley for many years to come, and we need to keep working together.
Again, the April 5th meeting will be held at the Community Hall at 7 p.m. The April 12th public meeting sponsored by the DOT will be held at the Seeley Lake Elementary School. An open house will be held from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m., and the public meeting will begin at 7 p.m.
If you would like to talk to one of the committee members prior to the meeting please feel free to contact any of us. If you are unable to attend the April 5th or 12th meeting and would like to see the proposed plan and make comments in writing to be presented at either of the meetings please contact one of the members. Members: Dave Evans, Paul Torok, Pat Swan Smith, Cheri Thompson, Frank Netherton or Pat Holt.