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Letter: Returning cars to Main Street will not revitalize downtown

Returning cars to Main Street will not revitalize downtown

It continues to amaze me how our community, for the most part, sits by and watches while the powers that be foster another white elephant on the taxpayers of Western New York. The blind acceptance by our politicians and The Buffalo News that removing cars from Main Street was a mistake and correcting it will lead to the rebirth of business downtown (see silver bullet) is totally misguided.

If a study has been done verifying this concept, I and many Rust Belt cities would love to see it. If our civic leaders truly want to help resurrect downtown, the money would be better spent subsidizing the conversion of the available buildings to housing. The only way to stabilize retail on Main Street is to increase the number of people living there.

People are now realizing the benefits of urban living, what was old is new again. We are working to destroy a quality of life that other cities are now embracing. I worked downtown for 30 years, walking on the car-less mall was enjoyable and relaxing. Dodging cars and trains is not what people want to deal with.

Wasting a possible TIGER (Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery) grant on returning cars to lower Main Street while the Central Terminal deteriorates to the point of no return is a travesty that should not be tolerated. Add in the modern terrorism threat of cars and trucks as weapons and you are promoting a possible pathway for a calamity no one is addressing. Buffalo is on the way back, please before we go much further, let’s really look at this idea for what it is, another misguided silver bullet.

Hank Olejniczak

Elma

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