Start Change – Start Listening

“Our experience here is people get really upset about change,” said Arlington Director of Transportation Dennis Leach. “They don’t like change…..”.  For a full media article about the Ridge/23rd/Meade St, please click here.
Arlington transportation director has lost touch with the residents. 

We work hard.  We pay our taxes.  We worry about keeping our jobs in this up and down economy.  We are keeping down our spending.  We know about change and can accept change that makes sense. We like principles that enhance collaboration  and not behavior that creates illusion of inclusion.

The changes we see the transportation department making with this project are on a much larger scale than they need to be.  It’s something that local citizen association did not request. All what was requested was that County deals with one corner and give the kids some safe space. The county came in with an elaborate plan. They clearly were marching to their own drummer. (Please click here to see another full media article on this issue).

 Isn’t Arlington County worried about the economy?  Do they have that much money to spend? Does the Director have to spend this money to keep a large staff occupied? 

Residents are not paying taxes for these kinds of projects.  We want our money to be used properly and not a projects that have flawed design.  We want that set aside developer’s funds given to the citizens be used properly, too. Not to double people’s front yards and create circular driveways while putting residents and pedestrians at risk, and fixing non issueThink about your families. We would want our tax money to be used wisely and help solve real neighborhood problems.  The Arlington County is connected to Washington DC and thus should be worrying about its own credit rating.  Congress doesn’t look like it is going to start making sense any time soon.

We need this money for our schools, our poor, our libraries, our roads….not on projects that go way beyond what people want.  Arlington needs to do smart long-term investments.

When several neighborhoods are concerned about the same issues, it doesn’t mean they don’t like change, it means the County is not listening.  You can not have the successful collaboration and active listening where participants don’t feel and see that happening in front of their own eyes.  The County does not get to grade its record, but citizens who were involved in the project design.

And there are more neighborhoods that are becoming indignant including East Falls Church and Columbia Pike.  There is a pattern that is being repeated. Neighborhoods don’t appreciate the local government that believes its citizens are not capable of understanding transportation issues.  Many of us are professionals and some have worked in the transportation business for years

Mr. Leach, we like change and would like to see some changes in your transportation department.  Let’s begin with listening. It is never too late to demonstrate it.


One response to “Start Change – Start Listening

  1. Sick and Tired
    The County trots out the same trite and tired arguments when they advance ridiculous plans. We welcome change. And the first change we welcome is to get rid of the county staff personnel who do not want to listen to serious concerns..

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