Better uses of money than renaming streets

Editor’s note: Since the writing of this letter, the mayor has announced 320th Street won’t be renamed.

Now that we have plenty of money thanks to the utility tax, we are free to throw money into projects that have no impact or even make things worse? If Federal Way really “is not a city of numbered streets,” to quote the mayor, we can name all our major streets to reflect not where they are, but what we care about. For instance, South 348th can be “Apple Pie Avenue,” Military Road can become “Mothers Memorial Drive,” First Avenue South can become “Baseball Avenue South” and a section of Pacific Highway South can become International Obesity Avenue.

Affected businesses will need to be compensated for the cost for new stationery, handouts, business cards, and Web updates. That would add to the estimated $75,000 for renaming South 320th Street South Veterans Way. Can those costs be less than $1,000 per affected business? That could bring the cost to over $100,000. Thus renaming our eight most traveled roads could be done for less than a million dollars. WHY???????????

Shouldn’t this money, if we have it, be spent on crime prevention?

The most heavily trafficked roads in Federal Way include 320th, South 348th, Pacific Highway South, First Avenue South, South 356th, South 312th and Dash Point Road. Should we rename them all with meaningless but sentimental names?

How far is it from South 348th to Veterans Way? How far from Veterans Way to Apple Pie Avenue? Who cares? Those of us who live here drive by instinct anyway. But what about our many friends from Seattle and North Seattle, who can better estimate their whereabouts by numbered streets and their exit signs on Interstate 5 South?

Seriously, it is hard to imagine anyone whose needs are assuaged by renaming our streets. (It was useful in Poland during the Russian invasion.) We should be ashamed of any City Council time spent on this proposal, and whoever’s idea it was should be deeply contrite for any time spent by the council or anyone else considering the idea.

Anthony and Mary Wilson, Federal Way

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