A recent letter to the editor of the Cartersville Daily Tribune and the Rome News Tribune by Mr. John Wade of Cartersville regarding the 411 Connector stated that concerned citizens should simply "let the process work". Mr. Wade has faith that the political machine, including GDT will perform due diligence for all citizens in its selection of Route D-VE of the 411 Connector project.
Mr. Wade can have faith and sit back and wait because his near-west side home/neighborhood in Cartersville will not be affected by this very costly and environmentally detrimental connector. The same applies to the retired engineer in Waleska, GA who also recently wrote to the editor of one of these publications.
For those of us who bought our homes (through non-disclosing Georgia state-licensed realtors) in the area of Route D-VE, we CANNOT sit back and let the "machine" perform its version of "black magic".
We CAN'T allow our tax dollars to be wasted (over $100 million) on the lengthier Route D-VE.
We CAN'T allow over 1800 acres of pristine wilderness to be destroyed.
We CAN'T allow an I-75 skirted mountain to become a visual and environmental blight in our county.
We CAN'T allow our county's businesses to suffer revenue loss during years of construction and relocation of a highway route to and from Rome.
We CAN'T allow our property values to decline any further than they already have in this economic climate.
We CAN'T seal/endorse a project simply because a GDOT commissioner from Rome may have ties to a huge construction firm who will undoubtedly secure the road-build contract.
We CAN'T accept the local reporters from news publications who report that the GDOT has "thoroughly studied Route D-VE" when the U.S. Fish & Wildlife, The FHWA (Federal Highway Administration) and others have required the GDOT to perform additional studies of the environmental impacts along proposed Route D-VE.
We CANNOT accept a 411 Connector route with a tangled web of stoplights/entrance-exit ramps at I-75 & new Hwy 20 that the FHWA (Federal Highway Administration) has not approved.
We CANNOT believe our U.S. Congressional representative when he states in a Rome Town Hall meeting held in June 2010 that the 411 Connector project is "out of his hands" when his offices have specifically designated individuals who monitor and study all issues connected to the 411 Connector project.
We also will not be labeled as one rich family fighting GDOT when the Coalition for the Right Road consists of hundreds of concerned, hard-working, home-owning, environmentally-conscious, voting residents of not only Cartersville, but also of Bartow, Floyd and Gordon counties and throughout the state of Georgia. In fact, many of the members of the Coalition ARE homeowners whose homes lie in the path of the 411 Connector whether Route D-VE or G is chosen.
The homeowners who are currently located near the existing intersection of 411 and Highway 41 will have their peaceful environs destroyed by the 411 Connector project. However, many of these citizens are involved with the Coalition for the Right Road to encourage the GDOT to make a better choice than Route D-VE. These citizens believe that if the GDOT destroys their neighborhood, devalues their land/homes or condemns it for the 411 Connector project, then at the very least the GDOT can be good stewards of all of our tax dollars and choose Route G which IS the originally chosen route and IS the least costly route.
Those, like Mr. Wade or the engineer from Waleska, GA can sit back and sip their sweet tea on their quiet suburban patios and wait for the "process", as they believe it, "to work". We concerned citizens cannot sit back and wait for "a process". We WILL NOT lie down and let the bulldozer politicians and GDOT act recklessly with our lives, our land and our tax dollars all for the benefit of corrupt political ties, greedy prospective commercial landowners, greedier road construction companies, GDOT designers and commissioners who are trying to save face or pursue a vendetta against landowners of an 1800 acre tract along proposed Route D-VE and lastly for the benefit commuters to and from west of Bartow County who WILL use whatever road connects them to the Interstate highway system.