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Harrison city clerk Jeff Pratt and Alderman Mary Jean Creager watch a video of Mosco Cash from his hospital bed addressing his concerns for Main Street.

Even being hospitalized didn’t stop local businessman Mosco Cash from addressing Harrison aldermen Thursday night and offering money to pay to have Main Street returned to a four-lane street.

Cash has been a very vocal critic of the “road diet” since a split council voted in 2011 to take over Main Street from the north end of the Main Street bridge over Lake Harrison to the north interchange, then restripe it into two lanes with a turning lane from Stephenson Avenue to about the Spruce Street intersection.

When City Council committees met Thursday night, Mayor Dan Sherrell said Cash had been scheduled to be on the agenda but he was hospitalized and couldn’t attend. So, he sent Kim Rosson in his place.

Rosson said Cash really wanted aldermen to hear his message Thursday night.

“He did not want to wait until November,” Rosson said.

So, Rosson said, she shot a video on her phone of Cash offering his message from his hospital bed.

Cash, with oxygen lines running to his nose, told aldermen that the two-lane street has reduced people going downtown by two-thirds.

Aldermen in July didn’t take action on a similar request from Cash, at least partially because of the expense involved. But Cash made the city an offer.

He said in the video that he had been collecting money from people who share his view on Main Street. Some donations have been as little as $1 or as much as $50 or more.

Cash said he personally would make up the difference above donations to pay for restriping the street to four lanes as it was for years in the past.

He continued saying he was making the offer to help his friends and neighbors.

“I’m doing this for the people on Main Street and downtown,” Cash said, adding that some businesses will go out of business if Main Street remains as it is.

The council had earlier this year been presented with estimates of costs for three options should the council want to restripe the street.

Those estimates showed it would cost:

• $85,000 to restripe Main from Central Avenue to Spruce. That proposal would include curb, gutter and sidewalk work.

• $23,250 from Propect Avenue to Spruce — the idea Alderman Johnny Savage had proposed.

• $20,000 from Bower Avenue to Spruce.

Sherrell said he wasn’t sure which of those options Cash preferred, but Rosson said Cash mentioned the $23,000 figure to her.

Sherrell then asked aldermen if they had anything to add to the discussion. None did, although Mitch Magness asked Rosson to offer the council’s thanks to Cash for his time.

At the July meeting, aldermen indicated they were “done” with the issue.

The full council regularly meets the third Thursday night of each month. Thursday night’s meeting was for only committees and no action could be taken.

(4) comments

Ol'Timer

Downtown Harrison's Main street isn't wide enough four (4 vehicular traffic lanes) for the length of the "Road Diet". It seems I remember City Council police reports indicating fewer auto accidents with the "Road Diet". I'm "downtown" frequently
(@leest 2 - 3 times wkly) and vehicular traffic flow seems to move rite along very
well, w/minimum "Dukes-of-Hazzard" styled drivers. Probably, niney percent plus
(90 o/o +) of drivers in Harrison don't know "rules-of-the-road", or feel obligated to
comply w/laws regulating motor vehicle operations, they'll use turn lanes for passing,
merging, and travelling to a destination 1/8th mile away. The "Road Diet" isn't adversley affecting "business downtown", more likely it's convient parking.

"Speaking-of-parking", watch-out @ WALMART, Home Depot and Fashion Center
Mall parking lots, and FedEx entrances & exits and the curve on Forward dr. they're
practically like "demolition derbys".
[scared]

NOYBNOYB

All things considered,"Uncle Russ",I'm sure your opinion will be at the top of 'folks' decision making process.
"want a bees"?Really?
One would assume the curbs/gutters/sidewalks,and presumably storm drainage,would see (MUCH needed) improvement.This would be a good opportunity to start that process.
"so I for" reverting it back to four lanes...

lightYears

I am supportive of Mr. Cash and his projects in general. He has been a great supporter of the High School Sports Program and deserves consideration regarding his suggestion about the road diet.

I too was ( in the beginning) adamantly against the road diet.. For one, I thought the traffic problems I was experiencing could be solved by the police department, collaring the dozen or so, Dukes of Hazzards want a bees, that would bunch together and blow lights in excess of 70mph...Secondly....
The Diet plan was introduced by a new and controversial mayor Crockett, who at that time, appeared to be following, the Machiavelli hand book on taking government control over a municipality or country...

I did my homework at least, there were good reports about the road diet success in other cities.
The cops were not having much luck w/ the dukes who were now using cbs to stay informed.
The State did an inferior job on the new paving... In as much as they did not mill the old pavement
properly to allow the level of the new pavement to be level with the concrete gutter. Instead they added another layer over the gutter impairing drainage just like they have done on the by-pass.

The road diet is doing what I call a better job than before , so I for leaving it alone and I have down town properties. However I think the island in front of Lefflers needs to be re-worked so Cashes trucks have easier access to making that corner and heading North.

Old Arkie

Seems to me that if most of the businesses affected want the four lane and especially considering they are willing to pay for it, and that some consideration should be given to Mr Cash because of his benevolence toward the schools, the very least the council should do is give it some serious debate, rather than dismissing the wishes of Main Street businesses and many citizens by declaring: they were "done" with the issue!

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