Residents oppose idea of bypasses

June 24, 1994|By Donna E. Boller | Donna E. Boller,Sun Staff Writer

Westminster area residents who don't want a northern bypass, don't want a southern bypass and don't want Route 140 upgraded told the State Highway Administration to save its money or spend it elsewhere.

A public hearing last night at Westminster High School on proposals to ease congestion on Route 140 -- including three possible bypass routes -- brought out about 450 people. Forty-three signed up to speak, but of the first 22 scheduled, nine failed to appear.

Bypass opponents said they didn't want to see farms, woods, houses and businesses destroyed to create a bypass that will bring traffic and noise near their homes.

"I don't want to hear trucks going by," said Stephen Strahotsky, a Grove Lane resident who would be affected by the proposed southern bypass. "I don't live in Baltimore. This is Carroll County."

Lucabaugh Mill Road resident Kenneth E. Davidson, whose home would be razed for a northern bypass, urged opponents to organize under the name Citizens Rights Protection Alliance. He said the alliance plans to meet at Westminster High School at 7 p.m. Sunday and would hire an attorney to "protect our rights through the courts."

Several farmers told the SHA that they felt slighted by the agency's failure to consider farms in the bypasses' paths when it calculated the impact on businesses. Farming is a business, the speakers said.

Opposition to upgrading Route 140 came from Westminster Mayor W. Benjamin Brown, who called Route 140 one of Westminster's two "Main Streets" and criticized a proposal to ease congestion by eliminating crossovers except at major streets. Cranberry Mall manager Donna Leone opposed any change in traffic patterns on Route 140.

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