216th interchange project offers freeway access option in Langley

J. Jansen notes the benefits of having the 216th interchange in place in Walnut Grove.

Dear Editor,

I would like to respond to the letter from Colleen Ash [Interchange opposition critical, Oct. 20, Advance].

The writer states they are not “NIMBYs” (not in my backyard) and are not opposed to change and progress… yet they go on to unfold their grievances against the 216th Street interchange designated for their own area.

Their statements are in direct conflict with each other.

They show little regard for the realities of the rest of Langley, that wants better freeway access.

There are several other schools (besides the schools on 216th Street) in Langley that sit on busy street corners (like Willoughby Elementary, 208th Street and 80th Avenue; Alice Brown, 200th Street and 44th Avenue; and Nicomeckl Elementary, 200th Street near 53rd Avenue).

It is not always ideal when change and progress occur, especially on transportation routes, but Langley has grown – and we need better Highway 1 access from the areas south of the highway.

Fortunately, pollution at intersections is less of a problem now, as AirCare has even become obsolete.

We have cleaner burning cars now as will be the cars of the future.

The concessions that the TOL has given the residents of Walnut Grove amount to a lot of money and include better sidewalks, noise barriers, street crossings and bike routes over the interchange that will help make the area safe.

School parking can be enlarged if needed.

Very few cars park on 216th Street from Highway 1 north towards 96th Avenue

The writer states there is “temporary” parking allowed on 216th Street.

216th Street was never designated for permanent street parking because the knowledge that 216th Street would eventually become a wider road and a freeway interchange has been documented for more than 30 years (see Walnut Grove Community Plan – stage 3-1979).

Why is the writer of the letter saying 200th Street interchange was a bad idea?

How would Langley residents access Highway 1 without the 200th Street interchange?

How would Walnut Grove access the rest of Langley without the 208th Street overpass?

We needed that interchange and overpass, and now the expanded growth in the area requires more freeway access and road infrastructure.

That is why we do need the 216th Street interchange. People are flocking to Langley as a great place to live.

Help us get around Langley and commute more efficiently.

J. Jansen, Langley

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