I am writing this letter in response to the article titled, "Squeeze Play." I grew up on the the Southside. I owned property on the Southside. The heavy foot and vehicular traffic on Fountaine is mostly created by the apartment unit named The Commons, which is located nearby. Those buildings rent out 194 units. Fountaine is by far one of the narrowest streets in Flagstaff. That's historically how it has always been.
In the past 15 years, I have seen Hope Construction purchase some of the most run-down, boarded-up properties, including one crack house on the Southside. These eyesores were torn down, removed and rebuilt into some of the most attractive properties on the Southside. They have made area property values increase. I am sure Mr. McCabe's property has quadrupled in value since the area has started to turn around.
Implying that it is one developer that is squeezing out the locals is not exactly fair. The Southside has been a haven for students for decades. The squeeze comes from NAU and the consistently rising housing demand they are responsible for, which Southside can't keep up with. This town was built on tourism, but we all know this is a "college town."
In regards to the noise and pounding hammers with the construction on Fountaine, such are the sounds of progress. I presently live on Walapai Drive off Zuni. We, as neighbors, have endured the constant noise of dump trucks, backhoes and jackhammers since the first of May. Yes, the city is tearing up the street, which has been closed many times and presently looks like a war zone. But we endure this temporary inconvenience because we know this is for the long-term betterment of our neighborhood and our community.