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Letters – Reader worries highway project will ruin local business

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To the Editor:

It was with interest that I read your column last Thursday when you, like the rest of us, were dismayed over the destruction of the community businesses by violent protestors in Ferguson.  You went on to say that you could not see that happening in Lockhart where we “value fairness” and “respect one another.”

Yet, you and  the Post-Regist

er have turned a blind eye to the destruction of our small businesses along Colorado Street (US 183) by the “improvements” envisioned by the government in Austin through TxDOT and with the acquiescence of the City leaders of Lockhart. The proposed “improvements” are an attempt to create a faster means of travel between I10 and Austin.

The State does not care that many Lockhart small businesses will be damaged by the “improvements” and did not even do an impact assessment as required by State law to see what effect the “improvements” would have on the business community.

Lockhart is a town with a proud history of family owned businesses that provide valuable services to the residents. Eliminating these businesses by reducing access, and eliminating parking by placing walls and curbing along the street, is a reality.

While TxDOT and Lockhart’s city fathers argue that traffic accidents may be reduced by the improvements, which prohibit entry to local businesses, simply heeding the citizen input about staggered lights at three major intersections has reduced accidents for the entire length of Colorado Street in Lockhart by a third. Erecting walls and constructing curbing and massive sidewalks without curb cuts for driveways, may provide more leisurely wandering up and down Colorado Street, but does little to promote patronage of Lockhart’s many family owned businesses.

Of course, with the toll road and now US 183 becoming limited access, the traffic can zip on up to Austin from I10 without the bother of customers of Lockhart’s small businesses slowing them down.

In Lockhart, I would like to think that we do “value fairness” and “ respect one another” and would hope that this also applies to the family businesses along Colorado Street. The proposed “improvements” to Colorado Street are anything but fair and show a disrespect to the families who depend on these businesses on a daily basis.

I look forward to your comments after you have investigated the impact on Lockhart’s small business community by the TxDOT plan for Colorado Street.

Barry Norwood

Lockhart

 

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