Dear City Council Member,
My name is Len Denton, and I am writing to you today as a member of the Georgetown Neighborhood Alliance. I’m reaching out to you to share two pieces of information with you regarding the Austin Avenue Bridges Project as you prepare for the bridges workshop on Tuesday, June 27th.
First, I’d like to offer you a copy of our Austin Avenue Bridges Fact Sheet. We developed this fact sheet, along with a four-part ad campaign in the Williamson County Sun. We developed this campaign because we felt that the City’s narrative on the condition of the bridges was too negative, and didn’t convey the true status of the bridges, their overall safety, and the options available to the community. You can read more about all four of our facts at the Alliance’s blog here: http://www.alliancegeorgetown.org/blog/.
Second, I’d like to offer you a series of questions that we believe should be discussed during the workshop. These are questions that have arisen during our many discussions with citizens and business owners around Georgetown. While we appreciate the City’s public meetings on the bridges, the format of those meetings didn’t provide a viable venue to raise critical questions. Therefore, we respectfully offer these questions hoping that they can be addressed by you and your colleagues during the workshop.
Regarding the Bridges Project, our primary concerns are public safety and the protection of our historic downtown, along with the businesses that are located there. We’ve studied all five of the options that have been shortlisted. Two of the options being considered (Option 7A and Option 8) will require extensive construction and will result in significant disruption to downtown. Construction impacts have recently decimated the historic district of Salado, causing more than half of their businesses to close. (http://www.texasmonthly.com/articles/the-road-work-goes-on-forever/) Because of the potential for disruption and negative economic consequences, we urge the Council to carefully consider each option’s impact scenarios.
The Alliance backs Option 6A, Rehabilitation of the Bridges with a separate pedestrian bridge. Here’s why:
- It meets our needs for traffic and pedestrian safety.
- The pedestrian bridge will connect our historic downtown with San Gabriel Trail and Rivery Park, opening many new development possibilities.
- It costs at least $5 million dollars less than the construction options.
- It will result in the least disruption to historic downtown Georgetown.
We hope you will join us in protecting “The Most Beautiful Town Square in Texas” by supporting Option 6A.
Thank you for your time and consideration.
The Georgetown Neighborhood Alliance
The Georgetown Neighborhood Alliance is a citizen project, whose goals are to ensure that Georgetown residents are informed about the issues and that their voices are heard.