By Sam Reed
It is not my nature to respond publicly to citizens who have taken positions with which I disagree. However, in reading the August 21, 2009, issue of The Island Connection, there were some writings which caught my attention. This is probably because I (along with many others) have expended so much time and effort in pointing out the dangers of the existing Bohicket and River Roads on Johns Island. Thousands of Charleston County drivers regularly traverse these roads, putting their lives and property in danger. Please check these out-dated roads for yourself if you have not already done so.
It is amazing that a writer characterized official statistics secured from the South Carolina Department of Safety as provided by police officers on the scenes as “not objectively based on available statistics”.
I agree that better driving habits would help, but human nature being what it is, we need to ask our leaders to provide safe driving facilities when possible. It is true that money is required, but prioritization of what is best for the most people should help with funding.
The writer further charges “irresponsible confabulation” against statements attributing traffic deaths to “narrow lanes, sharp curves, lack of shoulders … and nearby live oaks”. It is my opinion that it is truly irresponsible to ignore these deficiencies.
In talking about “congestion”, it is argued that the conclusions reached are “disingenuous and specious”. All one needs to do is to drive these roads on a regular basis at various times of day.
A properly designed greenway need not be exceedingly expensive, and certainly need not be disruptive to the beauty and natural environment of Johns Island. It should enhance the ambiance and attractiveness of this wholesome area.
Those supporting this needed safety improvement do not plead guilty to “obfuscation”, nor do we feel that we “look foolish” to realistic users of Johns Island roads.
Most of the alternative proposals to deal with this well-documented safety issue are likely to be more costly than a new greenway.
Too much time, dedication, and efforts have been invested in this issue to let counter-positions go unchallenged.