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September 8, 2000

We're not planning a formal ribbon cutting ceremony or anything like that, but the folks on our block invite you to come look at our new portion of Park Lane between Wakefield Drive and North Brookwood. The city street department and its contractor, Evans Associates, have just finished the job and I must say it looks great. Gone are the many potholes, crumbling edges, ruts and all of the other problems that have troubled drivers along that little stretch, where axles and tires have been abused for so long.

It seemed like a long and tiresome process after the first work started back there in early August. They peeled off the entire old surface and did some things to stabilize the base, and there was a period of two weeks when all work ceased. During that time those hot summer breezes carried layers of dust all over the neighborhood, making the wait seem interminable, but now that the job is finished everyone should be happy again.

I know there are many other worthy projects waiting their turn, and the sales tax we're paying should make it possible to work on all of them while this street program is going on. When you consider the rebuilding job that's also been underway on I-35 highway on the west side of town, it's obvious that we are experiencing considerable road improvement work in this community during the dog day heat of August in the year 2000.

It seems to me that these new streets in the city limits should have center stripes and edge markers so drivers can steer their vehicles down the right path. Fir avenue has just been re-striped and so has the downtown square, as they annually are just before the Sept. 16th celebration. Many Perry motorists forget that there are two lanes and just drive down the middle of the street until oncoming traffic appears. Maybe if we had visible centerlines some of that problem could be eliminated, along with the potential for a costly and deadly collision. What do you think?

While I'm making suggestions, here's another that was passed along to me. After attending a recent nighttime public performance in the high school auditorium, many motorists again realized the high school parking lot at Eighth and Elm is not well lighted. Actually, it is virtually altogether unlighted. That makes it difficult to find a car in the darkness and it also poses the possible hazard of bumping fenders or waylaying pedestrians. Maybe the school board would like to think about adding some light poles in the parking area. While they're at it, I hope they will also take a look at the way bumpers on pickups and cars parked in the south tier hang out over the sidewalk, making it impossible for pedestrians to use the sidewalks. This particular problem occurs each weekday during the school year. Could the parking pattern be fixed to eliminate that nuisance? What's your opinion?