Thousands of people live within easy walking and biking distance of this site. If we miss out on the opportunity to get infrastructure that would make walking and biking reasonable options for people to get to Evergreen Plaza, we get more traffic congestion, air pollution, road rage and longer travel times to destinations we might reach via 95th and Western. All of this costs us in quality of life.
Here's a much better example from the north side. Note the ped refuge islands at the ends of the parking rows, the red-colored sidewalk along those islands and between the north-south parking rows, and crosswalks connecting the refuge islands. This design does not sacrifice a significant amount of parking and greatly improves walking conditions.
|Proposed Evergreen Plaza site plan|
When the mall was still open, I and many neighbors walked there to shop at Carson's and other stores. I'm not about to get in the car, make traffic worse, and deal with all the traffic and parking hassles to go half a freakin' mile once it's open again.
If reducing car traffic and having safer access whether or not you drive to the Plaza makes a difference to you, please take a few minutes to write to the developer. Ask that half a lane or a lane of car parking be replaced with one or two east-west sidewalks within the parking lot so that people can walk through the parking lot with less risk of being hit.
Also ask for bike racks in 2 or more locations. This can make a difference both for customers and for store employees. Employees typically don't make a lot of money. If they can ride their bikes to work, it's an affordable option that may be faster than a bus, depending on where they live. Bike rack locations that might work well include 98th St. by the southeast corner of Carson's and near the health club. Access from 99th St. via Campbell or other adjacent streets is very workable if there's a place to lock up your bike. Please include an information link on bike parking, and emphasize that bike racks need to be decent quality and properly installed.
This is a great opportunity to make a positive difference. I don't know if they'll listen to us. We have nothing to lose by asking. Who's with me?