Lance Scranton: Craig needs a two-way street!
August 11, 2015
It's time for Craig to take some bold steps if we want to revitalize the prospects of our local businesses and attract people to our self-described "historic" downtown. Living here for almost 18 years, I have always been somewhat flummoxed by our system of one-way streets that gets people through Craig as efficiently and quickly as possible. Most towns that want to draw you to their local businesses, services and attractions make certain that guests who might be passing through will, at minimum, be exposed to what downtown businesses and our cultural centers have to offer.
I don't know the history of our street designs and certainly have no disdain for efficiency but the fact is that if you desire to get through Craig as fast and as efficiently as possible — you can and you might not even know that Craig has a downtown. Economic development seems to be on the minds of just about everyone these days since our major industries are threatened by government overreach. If we want to take advantage of every avenue of potential economic support in our community, we should, at minimum, expose as many travelers or visitors as possible to our downtown via our main streets.
Our system of highways around Craig are efficient enough to handle the experienced road traveler who is hauling goods or trying to make time but traffic through the heart of our city should be a major consideration for showcasing our very best attributes. Turning each thoroughfare back into two-way streets would certainly shift the habits of travel for our well-versed locals and frustrate some others who want to avoid traffic, but change is a two-way street and each of us has to give up a little to potentially gain so much more.
Downtown "main-street" Craig could extend itself both west and east to become a vital economic driver and has the potential to help showcase our town's unique and historic flavor, but it is a spot in our city that is easily avoided and possibly unknown by many who travel through our city.
Maybe it's time we considered a bold idea to catapult us into delivering on the fact that we have so much to offer as a town. Craig is where I want to be and we should show others everything that we have to offer — even if it gets a bit crowded and we have to drive a little differently. It's an idea worth considering, would definitely take some work, will be a process, might even be risky, but could pay some huge dividends down the (two-way) road!