Here is a scanned copy of the proposed 22 acre easement that is one subject of the July 16, 2007 public hearing at city council. The easement will include virtually all of the lowland area along the eastern boundary of McIntire Park. Much of this area is to be regraded by cutting into the hillside to the western part of the easement, and filling much of the area on which the proposed roadway would be constructed. Some of the fill will be roughly twenty feet above the current grade. It is not clear how much of this 22 acres will be accessible if the road is build and the easement is terminated after construction, but my feeling is that much of it will be too steeply sloped to be of much use to pedestrians. These 22 acres constitute a significant slice of the parkland east of the railroad track.
Our proposed comprehensive plan proposes protecting our parkland. Are the benefits from this road project sufficient to justify sacrificing this parkland? It is hard to know. I am still not convinced that there is much in the way of benefits to be gotten from this project. Remember, the project for which this land is to be used does not include an interchange, and should an interchange be included, additional parkland will be consumed for that project.