The Michigan Land Use Institute is pleased to submit the following comments to the TC-TALUS Board regarding the TC-TALUS Long-Range Plan.
Recently, TC-TALUS-this region’s transportation and land use planning body-released a memo that described the challenges with our road network’s ability to handle the traffic that travels between the east and west sides of the Grand Traverse region. The document is intended to help the TC-TALUS board prioritize major transportation projects for the region’s long-range transportation plan. Here are a few reactions.
Traffic is a hot issue in Traverse City, yet much of the debate focuses on how to move traffic from one area to another, rather than ways to actually reduce it. Unless we give visitors and workers more options for getting around, congestion will increase.
We also know we can’t build our way out of congestion. No city in the world has ever done this, and Traverse City will not be the first. But what we can do is this: Manage regional traffic and reduce in-town, peak-hour commuter traffic. We’ll explore these proposals in detail in an upcoming blog post series titled Five Ways to Beat Traffic in TC.
Traffic problems take on new urgency during Traverse City’s busy season as too much congestion hampers business growth, wastes fuel, and hurts this area’s quality of life. But local leaders need to fix our existing transportation network first before pursuing an expensive, ill-conceived, short-term remedy like a new Hartman-Hammond bridge.
A quick Google Maps satellite image reveals the inefficiencies of one of the area’s busiest intersections.