Rosslander’s viewpoint off the mark

A response to a letter to the editor printed in the October 29 issue of the Trail Times regarding downtown Trail construction.

The disrespectful tone of Rossland Councillor Jill Spearn’s letter to the editor (Lack of traffic flow alarming, Trail Times, Oct. 29) has compelled me to respond. Everyone is certainly entitled to their opinions and the newspaper offers us a chance to do so in a public forum. However, I believe with that privilege goes an inherent understanding that we choose our words carefully.

Given the geographical constraints of the Trail corridor and the fact that two highways must converge, it is illogical to make a comparison to the Rossland experience. First of all, Rosslanders could choose an alternate route to circumvent the construction zone via Park or Thompson Avenue. Secondly, they did not have to try and accommodate 1000-plus employees going to and leaving work at the same time.

As far as the young flaggers, I feel sorry for them at the peak times, as it must be very stressful. I have had many opportunities to observe them and they are doing the best they can given the circumstances. In addition, many of us appreciate the fact that a company from the area is doing the work, thus creating employment for youth in the West Kootenay region.

Councillor Spearn also makes reference to the lack of courtesy shown during her “war zone” experience. I have found the total opposite. I have witnessed people motioning other drivers to merge ahead of them and have been the recipient of such consideration numerous times.

The reference made to the struggling Trail businesses, I too empathize with their current situation however, there is still parking available at their storefronts. If memory serves me correctly the Trail Times wrote an article about some Rossland businesses who suffered greatly due to a lack of access during their downtown core project.

The condescending comments made about the Trail “professionals running the show” I found most disturbing of all for many reasons, of which I do not care to elaborate upon at this time. Suffice to say that with comments like those it is no wonder the two communities cannot work together for the common good.

We have all experienced some frustration with the wait times through the downtown, but like anything in life we are called upon to adjust.

Leave earlier, later or enjoy the time listening to music. If we lived in the Lower Mainland we would be experiencing gridlock year round not just for a few months. These situations call for patience and courtesy.

I was sorry to hear that Councillor Spearn “will not travel to Trail again until this is done.” On behalf of the Trail taxpayers I would like to extend an invitation to come and have a relaxing swim at the Trail Aquatic Centre when she is able to once again visit our great city.

Kevin Oliver