The traffic in Durango is an issue for our city. Recently, a study done by Environment Colorado identified 62 elevated ozone days last year in Durango, according to its “Trouble in the Air” report (Durango Herald, Oct. 22).
Traffic makes people less sociable, less healthy, more stressed and is a long-term infrastructure problem that costs the city lots of money every year to repair roads. Most of the unnecessary vehicle traffic is encouraged because people are forced to use their cars if they live in new development. Because of the nature of these roads and their location, it is very impractical to walk anywhere.
The population in Durango has been increasing, and our traffic situation is unsustainable. Building larger roads, like the $98 million U.S. Highway 550-160 connection project, just encourages people to drive more and isn’t a solution to traffic. We instead should upgrade existing public transportation methods to encourage people to not drive as much. Fewer drivers on the roads will clear up most traffic congestion and might make it flow even better.
A simple solution would be to build small corner stores in suburban neighborhoods to encourage people to walk to get groceries instead of driving. It could reduce traffic, and it will make it a lot easier to live in a suburban neighborhood.
We need to build infrastructure for a more healthy lifestyle.
Animas High School senior