Thinking on how to approach the Packer Ave. decision by some Council members

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Gadfly is a bit confused about whether the temporary closing of Packer Ave. is a done deal. Newspaper reporting indicates that it will be voted on by Council at the next meeting — February 4.

Gadfly would have thought that the Mayor could make that decision and that Council would come in to play if, on the basis of the study of the temporary closing, the Mayor decides that a permanent closing is a good idea.

If Council votes February 4, it would only be on the temporary closing that enables the traffic study, and such a pilot study makes sense both technically and politically.

Gadfly sorta knew this day would come, and thus back in primary time early in 2019, he used the Packer Avenue closing as one of the series of questions he asked Council candidates to answer and that they graciously agreed to answer.

Gadfly pauses to acknowledge again the absolutely great cooperation the candidates gave in answering in detail and with care that list of 8 questions. Unparalleled!

It might be interesting now to look at their answers to this Gadfly prompt. He was not really looking for their opinion on whether closing Packer Avenue was a good idea or not. He was looking for how they would approach making a decision.

On March 24 [2019], The Brown and White, the Lehigh University student newspaper, reported that Lehigh was exploring a pedestrian walkway on Packer Avenue, presumably between Brodhead and Webster Streets. Such a street “vacation” – should it ever be formally and officially proposed – would ultimately come before City Council for final disposition. Without prejudging how you would vote on such a now hypothetical proposal, describe what factors you would need to consider before reaching a decision.

Michael Colon

Grace Crampsie Smith

J. William Reynolds

Paige Van Wirt

Gadfly was interested in a picture of how their minds operated when faced with a major decision.

Gadfly thinks they are going to be faced with such a real decision on Packer Ave. in the relatively near future.

Lehigh backed off in 1976. Gadfly is not sure that will happen now.

to be continued . . .

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