It used to be that green space and nice views were appreciated in Portland. Now, with the planned demise of the Franklin Arterial, in conjunction with the massive “midtown” project being planned in Bayside, that no longer seems to be the case.

The impending construction is going to turn Portland into a smaller copy of concreted Boston. Easy to walk around, but not too aesthetic.

People should also start thinking about where all the traffic on Franklin is going to go once built over. To Forest Avenue?

Interstate 295 is the busiest road in Maine. We have a huge tourism, fishing, shipping and general business economy in Portland that depends upon good access to the waterfront. Why would anybody want to kill that?

Fully 30,000 to 40,000 employees of more than 1,000 businesses enter and leave the peninsula every day. Why does anybody want to make it harder for them to get to work? There is a reason the mall/airport area has a 1 percent office space vacancy rate: access.

The current thought is to move all the 295 traffic to the Fore River Parkway, thence to Commercial Street, the Old Port and downtown.


If you add up all the traffic on all the arterials into Portland, it’s more than 100,000 cars a day, all to be moving along one two-lane road to the Old Port. If you think traffic is backed up downtown now in the summer, just wait till this gets done. It doesn’t make sense.

These projects are supposedly being done to make Portland more walkable. Well, once all the arterials are gone and the businesses leave, you will have lots of quiet space to walk around.

This plan is nothing but a disaster for the city. We need more trees, green space, views and viability, not brick and concrete walls.

Brian Peterson


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