To the editor:
Those who want the South Lawrence Trafficway through the wetlands apparently prefer another decade of delay and endless rounds of expensive litigation rather than compromise. Ironically, the Journal-World published a full-page color map more than 30 years ago (Aug. 16, 1972) describing a route south of the Wakarusa where regional transportation planners then said Lawrence should build its bypass. If only our elected leaders had not caved to pressure from developers, this project would have been completed long ago.
Some still believe south of the Wakarusa is "too far." Remember that the new sewage treatment plant will be well on its way to completion before this trafficway issue is settled. At least 20,000 new residents will locate south of the river. How can "32nd Street" serve as a regional bypass well north of our next major growth area? To those who say "just build it!" your best bet is to tell the Federal Highway Administration you support a real bypass south of the river.
Then we can talk about ways that 31st Street can be transformed into a state-of-the-art arterial street. It doesn't have to destroy the wetlands or polarize the community. Doesn't need to cut Haskell folks off from historic land many Indians consider sacred. Needn't fill the wetlands with interstate trucks all through the night. Together we can enable local traffic to move across town more efficiently while ensuring true environmental justice prevails.