Dear Editor, In September we received a call from the elementary school. Our daughter hit her head during recess, was bleeding, and we were needed at the school as quickly as possible. My wife started driving towards the school. Unfortunately, in front of the National Guard Armory, she got stuck behind another car that was driving under 25 mph. Preston’s ill-conceived “lane diet” forced my wife to follow this slow car for the entire drive to the elementary school adding extra minutes of stress wondering just how severely our little girl was hurt.
After a quick trip to the ER our daughter is OK, but the frustration of that day remains. Before the “lane diet” my wife could have passed the slow car and gotten to the school quicker. But because of the “lane diet” she was stuck behind a car driving 20 mph under the legal speed limit when time was critical.
City leaders claimed the “lane diet” would make us safer. We didn’t feel that our daughter was safer that day. Where is the proof that the lane diet has actually made us safer? Given the extreme amount of frustration citizens feel about the “lane diet” city leaders should be publishing statistics to show how much safer Preston is to show us that all this hassle is worth it. Yet after a year, we have yet to see any evidence that the “lane diet” has improved safety; rather I have seen far more aggressive driving as a result of increased congestion.
The “lane diet” has made Preston a worse place to live. Traffic congestion is worse, going to local businesses is a hassle and as such local businesses have been hurt, and the “lane diet” definitely put a damper on rodeo weekend. If our local leaders cannot make a convincing case that the hassle is worth it, by showing us that the lane diet has made us safer, then it is time to elect new leaders. If we elect leaders who are opposed to the lane diet now, we have a chance that Preston could be changed back to four lanes before population growth makes the situation worse. As bad as Preston is because of the “lane diet”, right now is the best it will ever be. As the population of Cache Valley continues to grow, the negative consequences of the “lane diet” will only get much, much worse. On November 5th I will be remembering the frustration we felt the day our daughter was hurt and I will be voting against all candidates who do not openly oppose the “lane diet.” I hope all who are frustrated by the “lane diet” will do the same.