Letter: Council should look at changing traffic, not streets
To the Perham City Council:
In response to your recent study into making Perham more pedestrian friendly, I challenge you to look at the habits of the drivers. Sidewalks, dedicated bike lanes, and special crossings will not encourage people to bike and walk around town if the drivers do not stop for people at intersections and crosswalks.
Take for example the crosswalks on County Road 51 by the bike trail. Even though there are painted crosswalks and large signs, drivers rarely stop. My family and I, along with our neighbors, have had to wait for three, four, six or even eight cars to speed past before someone stops and lets us cross.
This disregard to pedestrians is not limited to areas around the bike trail; it has also happened around town. The biggest, and cheapest, thing that Perham can do to make our town friendly to bikers and walkers is to make a habit of stopping and allowing people to cross.
If the drivers would stop for pedestrians who are waiting at intersections, regardless if there is a stoplight or sign, then Perham would be a "biking and pedestrian friendly community."