Palo Alto Weekly

Spectrum - June 6, 2014

Letters to the editor

More creative solutions

Editor,

Restore the Charleston/Arastradero corridor to four lanes. The present two-lane configuration has caused gridlock at busy times of the day, causing drivers to cut through the neighborhoods to avoid the slow traffic on this important traffic artery.

Palo Alto has seen lots of new building both for residential and business use. ABAG has mandated additional residential construction. This has added more traffic to the city and will continue to add more traffic as we try to keep up with ABAG housing demands. To keep pace, we should be adding more lanes to our main arteries and corridors. What has been the city's response? Eliminate two of the four lanes on the Charleston/Arastradero Corridor!

There has to be a better solution to the problem of bicycle safety than tying up traffic. We expect better, more creative solutions from Palo Alto's traffic engineers.

Rich Stiebel

Talisman Drive, Palo Alto

More expensive to not

Editor,

Governor Brown's failure to invest in preschool in his Budget Proposal is fiscally wasteful. He says he wishes to avoid expensive new programs. It's more expensive, however, not to fund preschool.

Every $1 spent on preschool saves $7 by reducing remedial education and criminal justice costs, and by increasing high school graduation rates and future taxpayer earnings.

Since 1980, we've built 19 prisons but only one university. Half of the inmates in California prisons are high school dropouts.

This fiscal wastefulness is magnified in California, where half our students grow up in poverty. Forty to 60 percent of second- and third-graders are not grade-level proficient; those same children were behind when they started kindergarten.

Funding preschool is a wise investment to avoid far greater future expenditures and to grow an educated, tax-paying base.

There's time to put preschool funding in the budget. Please sign and share our petition: capta6.org/petition

Nancy Krop

McGregor Way, Palo Alto

Wendy Akers-Ghose

Park Boulevard, Palo Alto

A grim ride

Editor,

It's no wonder that VTA buses have become refuges of the very needy. The majority of riders appear wretched souls of a dysfunctional economic system. The other day I decided to use public transport and my bicycle since I've heard the many arguments in favor of it.

I rode Caltrain to downtown San Jose from downtown Palo Alto. The ride was quick and comfortable, and my bicycle was accommodated with lots of space. At the end of the day, I decided to return via line 522 of the VTA. What a horrendous mistake! I was unable to read, write or even drink a beverage experiencing much "turbulence." The ride was jerky and bumpy. I guess, in the name of speed, stops were quickly arrived at but rapidly accelerated away from. Although El Camino Real (the majority of that route) is a state highway (82), it was mostly slow going due to many potholes. I was unable to board my scheduled bus as the two bicycle racks were already in use, but a compassionate driver allowed another two bikes on board.

This grim ride was not only unpleasant but very inefficient. The gap between the "haves and the have nots" appears to be increasing, not decreasing.

Lorin Krogh

Encina Avenue, Palo Alto

Why run for Council?

Editor,

With the announcement of a Palo Alto community member running for City Council on Palo Alto Online on May 28, 2014, I was dismayed at the lack of a civil discourse on the blog attached to the article. With the upcoming election in November, I hope as a community we can engage in a more civil discourse with those who choose to run for City Council. We should all encourage respectful disagreement on issues as opposed to personal attacks. This bad behavior in some instances amounts to adult bullying. We deserve better.

Susie Thom

Maplewood Place, Palo Alto

70 years after D-Day

Editor,

My memories of the D-Day invasion are vivid to this day. I was a little English girl raised in what was then the rural, sleepy village of Chalfont St. Peter, Buckinghamshire, England.

My mother decided that at 7 years old I was now old enough to walk the two miles to school by myself. It was perfectly safe, after all there was no gas so there were no vehicles, so off I went. As I approached the main road I could see there was a long convoy of troop carriers full of strange foreign (American) soldiers being driven through our village. I walked along the road to where I had to cross the street and climb the hill to school, but how was I going to cross the street when the trucks were so close together and traveling so fast? Was I going to risk my life and try to run between them? I did not dare go home because my mother would be very angry with me.

I stood on the curb with tears welling up in my eyes, and there to my relief was an outrider who spotted me. He got a few trucks to stop just long enough to let me cross the street. Oh what a relief! That's how I delayed the D-Day invasion by 30 seconds!

Jean Wilcox

Sutherland Drive, Palo Alto

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