Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Mayor Ken Wright addresses Council on Dunwoody Village Parkway

Dear Council,

First & foremost, I wanted to express my family’s gratitude and appreciation to you for your service.  Serving at the local level is the most demanding, raw, and unfiltered level of service available in this great country of ours. It's you, your loved ones, your friends, your neighbors and your community as your stakeholders. 

It's like an extended Thanksgiving get together: You've got your know it all Aunt who has all the easy answers, your drunkard distant step grandfather who believes the world revolves around him and his personal entitlements, to hell with the rest of the family, your over bearing mother, and of course your siblings that have their own very strong and always right personal opinions on every topic of discussion. 

In a nutshell, it's a tough crowd to feed and peacefully coexist.  You're tasked with keeping and moving the family together in the most thoughtful, forthright and best manner you can, no easy job.

As far as Dunwoody Village Parkway is concerned, let me lend you this family member’s opinion:  When Dunwoody Village parkway was cut, the thought was that all Dunwoody major roads would soon be four lane, it was "forward thinking" at the time.

Chamblee Dunwoody Road, Roberts Drive, Peeler, Tilly Mill, North Peachtree, Spalding Drive, Dunwoody Club Drive, Cotillion, Shallowford, Peachford, Mount Vernon all  are major Dunwoody roadways and are only two lanes. 

In fact, most of us love our two lane roads here in Dunwoody. In the 70's, a group of citizens fought like hell to prevent Ashford Dunwoody Road from becoming 4 lanes, they fought to have bike lanes and sidewalks instead. They lost, and Central Perimeter exploded. The irony is that many of these same protesters now vehemently oppose Dunwoody Village parkway becoming two lanes, a walkable / bikeable area. 

Dunwoody Village Parkway is not Ashford Dunwoody Road and Dunwoody Village is not Perimeter Mall. I imagine Dunwoody Village is called a Village and not a mall because it is surrounded on and abutted by all sides by thousands of homes. In those homes are kids and adults, many wanting to get out, walk, and bike around “the village.” 

To what extent and what ultimate form the remake of Dunwoody Village Parkway takes shape, if any, is in your hands, that's why you were elected, that's why you make the big bucks.

I firmly believe one thing is for sure, Dunwoody Village Parkway, in its current form, is unacceptable now and for future generations.

I wish you all the best.

Founding Mayor
Ken Wright

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