For now, numerous plans to improve Prince gather dust on a shelf, but if the state legislature commits to funding a Medical College of Georgia expansion and an associated University of Georgia health sciences campus at the Navy school, the Athens-Clarke Commission can pull them out of mothballs, Commissioner Kelly Girtz said.
"As soon as we know what's happening with the Navy school property, we need to get all those plans back on the table," Girtz said.
If it had passed, a commission proposal in November 2005 would have been the key to turning ideas on maps and in binders into real landscaping, bricks and pavement. In one of the most controversial votes of recent years, the commission voted 6-4 against taking over a state-owned stretch of Prince Avenue west of Milledge Avenue from the state.
The vote saved hundreds of thousands of dollars in maintenance costs over the decades and reassured suburbanites who viewed the street mainly as a highway into downtown. But it destroyed in-town residents' hopes that Prince would become more of a neighborhood center, lined with trees and small businesses, and safe for people on foot and on bicycles.
Full article from the ABH here.
I was quoted in this piece as a BikeAthens representative, but I'm not happy with 1) how I phrased myself or 2) how the ABH decided to quote me. Let me clarify that my point was not that any of the Prince accidents were the pedestrians' or cyclists' fault.
The point is that clearly defined crosswalks, 3-lane striping, and bike lanes would certainly make Prince a safer place- for walkers, cyclists and motorists.