Allegedly Progressive Gainesville Loves Cul-De-Sacs

By Dom Nozzi

dangerous header

 

 

 

In 2001, my long list of shameful, spineless, reactionary actions by the Gainesville City Commission grew again due to a cul-de-sac cave-in.

City Commissioners went against its staff recommendation and its adopted long-range transportation plan by approving cul-de-sacs at a proposed planned development (Walnut Creek) in the city.

They did this despite all the lip service this supposedly “progressive,” “green,” “transportation choice-advocating” commission engages in. They did this despite the funny little story I just told them in my staff presentation for their new, long-range transportation plan (I told them about “Little Bobby and his friend Jeff” being unable to play with each other because they are trapped in cul-de-sacs). They did this despite opposition from their Public Works Department director. They did this despite opposition from their fire department (of all people).images

To add insult to injury, even the planned development ordinance for Walnut Creek contained a clause that clearly stated that cul-de-sacs were not permitted — that connected streets are required. This required our city attorney to engage in “creative interpretation” of the language to allow the City Commission to cave in and allow cul-de-sacs.

I learned about this pathetic, embarrassing action by the Gainesville City Commission not because I was at the City Commission meeting, or because I watched the meeting on TV. In fact, it was decisions like this that compelled me to do everything I could to never go to meetings or watch on TV. I didn’t need ulcers or have my blood pressure raised. These inexcusable Commission actions sickened me.

No, I learned about the Commission vote from two fellow Gainesville planners who made it a point to forcefully and loudly fill me in on this atrocious Commission cave-in the first thing the next morning after the meeting, because they knew it would enrage me. They were incredulous.

And get this: I won’t mention names, but the planners who informed me were the two planners on our staff who were MOST pro-car and anti-transportation choice. Even they were outraged, and were throwing their hands up in disgust.

Again, the Commission was sending a clear message to staff: “We are conditioning you to be non-visionary, non-innovative, non-cutting edge, and weak negotiators (at least with site plans) because we will not back you up when push comes to shove at public meetings. Instead, we’ll pay a bunch of money to consultants to have them do the cutting edge regulations and plans. And we’ll then go ahead and ignore those as well.”

Progressive, New Urbanist, green City Commission in Gainesville? Hardly. Again, the Gainesville City Commission were quite clearly the Lip Service, Cave-in Commission Par Excellence.

dangerous footer

dangerous footer2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

______________________________________________

My memoir can be purchased here:

Paperback = http://goo.gl/9S2Uab Hardcover =  http://goo.gl/S5ldyF

The Car is the Enemy of the City (WalkableStreets, 2010), can be purchased here: http://www.lulu.com/product/paperback/the-car-is-the-enemy-of-the-city/10905607

Car is the Enemy book cover

Visit my urban design website read more about what I have to say on those topics. You can also schedule me to give a speech in your community about transportation and congestion, land use development and sprawl, and improving quality of life.

Visit: www.walkablestreets.wordpress.com

Or email me at: dom@walkablestreets.com

Visit my other sites:

Road to Ruin can be purchased here:

http://www.amazon.com/Road-Ruin-Introduction-Sprawl-Cure/dp/0275981290

My Adventures blog

http://domnozziadventures.wordpress.com/

My Best-Ever Lists blog

http://dombestlist.wordpress.com/

My Town & Transportation Planning website

http://walkablestreets.wordpress.com/

My Plan B blog

http://domz60.wordpress.com/

My Facebook profile

http://www.facebook.com/dom.nozzi

My YouTube video library

http://www.youtube.com/user/dnozzi

My Picasa Photo library

https://picasaweb.google.com/105049746337657914534

My Author spotlight

http://www.lulu.com/spotlight/domatwalkablestreetsdotcom

Advertisements

Leave a comment

Filed under Town and Transportation Planning

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s