Drag strip study not needed
To the Editor:
By this time most if not all readers of this paper as well as residents of Bethlehem Littleton and Dalton are well acquainted with Mr. Douglas Ingersons plans to build a Drag Strip on his Dalton property. Recently the Bethlehem Planning Board has decided that a site plan review is in order, to review the capabilities of Mr. Ingersons private road which is known as Douglas Drive, The concern is whether or not the extra wide, double width road that leads to his gravel pit can handle up to a maximum of five hundred cars on scheduled event nights. The fact that the road is over width and has easily handled ten and fourteen wheel trucks going in both directions at the same time, without a problem for years is not sufficient proof for the board that it can continue to do so.
Town counsel Jae Whitelaw has also presented concerns of traffic impact on Bethlehem and surrounding towns. One can excuse Whitelaws ignorance of local history when she claims that the Drag Strip constitutes a regional impact which implies that this is new to this small corner of Bethlehem. I wonder if she is aware that the proposed Drag Strip road entrance is just over a quarter of a mile from Bethlehem's former drive in outdoor movie theatre that was operated for very many years without complaint on the same Whitefield Road as Ingerson uses. It was reported in the papers as a sad day that the outdoor movie with all the noise and lights had to close.
Have any of the nay sayers considered the fact that the Drag Strip is like the old movie drive in. Lots of cars arrive at once, and when it is over, they all leave at once, just like Loudon Race Track. Two way traffic is never an issue.
And what about light pollution? Lights are a fact of life, interstates have lights, down towns have lights and no doubt some of the same light nuts, have all night outside lights at their own homes and farms.
Then the fear that the Drag Strip will pollute the River. Talk about fear without fact. Riverside Speedway in Lancaster is right next to the river and no problem. Same is the case for White Mountain Speedway in North Woodstock. A drag race is no demolition Derby and car to car contact is extremely rare....so just where is all the pollution going to come from? Both of these parks have large parking lots and the rivers run clean. .
The same chronic worrywarts also worry about property values and traffic. Hey folks! I hate to bring you bad news but Route 116 is ground zero for large trucks and traffic. If your property values take a drop, just take a look at your place and fix it up. It won't be the fault of a drag strip located many miles distant.
If you folks, who are always against everything, would just direct the same amount of energy into improving things right in your own home town, your property values will increase and when you get out of bed in the morning, you will feel better!