(In response to Fishwrapper, "The little train that could," April 17): So glad to see that someone is addressing the transit problem with a working solution. I would also like to give you props on a cleaver writing style that keeps the reader on the page. At first I was thinking, "OK, here we go again complaining about something everybody in Atlanta is aware of but not willing to do anything about." But your style kept me reading long enough to listen to the entire proposal.
I expected to find a link at the bottom letting the reader know what we can do and who to contact/ write to push it. Can we "the people" get a movement going?
-- Estelle M. Matheu, Atlanta
Editor's note: City Council President Cathy Woolard is leading the drive for the beltline. She can be reached at 404-330-6035, or at email@example.com.
Transit's remedial issue
(In response to Fishwrapper, "The little train that could," April 17): While I agree entirely with your assessment of the misuse of "mobility" and am intrigued and excited about the whole trolley idea, I take exception with your characterization of MARTA.
As Atlantans are always shocked to discover, MARTA is consistently the safest and cleanest transit system in North America. Its trains are faster than those of New York and much less bumpy than those of Chicago.
MARTA is also smartly built: It's either underground, next to freeways, or next to railways; in other words, though the tracks can be unsightly, the areas where MARTA tracks run were unsightly before MARTA came along.
The only reason that MARTA doesn't succeed is that the citizens of Atlanta won't allow it to do so. Every time MARTA proposes an expansion, little yellow signs emblazoned with "Keep your MARTA outta my Yard-a" pop up all over town.
Changing people's minds is what we must do. Only people with influence (like you) can do that. Poor, passionate saps like me can fume all we want, but we're rhetorically impotent, sad to say. I'm afraid that some critics have got ahead of themselves. We're still not to the stage of having the luxury to debate "my transit idea is better than your transit idea." We still have to push the remedial message, "Transit is better than no transit." Sad, but true.
-- Sam Clapp, East Point
R.I.P. Atlanta Cabana
Kudos to Creative Loafing for covering the demolition of yet another Atlanta landmark, the Atlanta Cabana. I enjoyed reading Jon Buono's article, "Architectural obituary," (Arts, April 17) on the history and demolition of the Atlanta Cabana. I live just two blocks away from the hotel and although I am somewhat happy to see the dilapidated building finally come down since it was a haven for crime, I am very concerned about what will be built in its place.
I fear that Atlanta's lack of character will once again win out. We will be stuck with another high-rise condo, suburban-like apartments, or a generic-looking office building. It's a shame that attempts failed to turn the old hotel into a chic boutique hotel. Midtown is one of the few areas of Atlanta that actually has some personality, and a boutique hotel would surely have complemented the area.
Although another landmark has fallen victim to the wrecking ball, all is not lost. The residents of Midtown have a responsibility to make sure that whatever is built on that site reflects what Midtown is and what we want it to be. I think that constructing art galleries, boutique shops, and/or cafes on the site would be an excellent addition to Midtown. I really hope that the city of Atlanta and the Midtown Neighborhood Association exercise a strong arm in ensuring that whatever is built on the site of the Atlanta Cabana reflects the architecture, fashion and glamour that once resided on the site.
-- David Piha, Atlanta
King Roy's road plan
(In response to "Brother can you spare $8.4 billion?" April 10): Thanks for the article. I hope this makes its way all around the state. Barnes' road plan is dangerous for the future of Georgia.
And, unfortunately, much of the developmental roads will do just that -- create unnecessary sprawl and bring it to the wrong places. But did you ever know a lawyer that knew a fig about money and finances? They just raise their billing rates if they calculated wrong and the governor will just raise our taxes if he calculated wrong. This governor is becoming dangerous in his actions for Georgia.
-- Mary Anderson, Cumming
Three times the Segway
I really enjoyed "The Great Roll-out" (April 3). One thing really struck me, however. The article states the "consumer" price for a Segway is $3,000; why, then, is the city of Atlanta paying $60,000 for six? That's more than three times the price I would have to pay. Is the version they are getting three times better? Why didn't they just buy three times as many normal ones?
-- Bob Folker, Atlanta
Didn't use your Noodle
Cliff Bostock: I am writing in response to your horribly unfair review of Noodle in Midtown (Grazing, "Culture clashes and creature comforts," April 10).
I have enjoyed the food at both Noodle locations and I believe I have a refined palate. The food has always been fresh and flavorful, albeit I admit that I have never had the tofu or Vietnamese entree you mentioned. If perhaps you had tried a better sampling of their menu, maybe you would have discovered most of the items on the menu are delicious. Perhaps more serious food critics would have done this, but I fear you have exposed your recklessness.
Do you have any idea who the owners are and how hard they work? Do you have any idea what kind of impact this could have on their fledgling location in Midtown? Hopefully, most people in Atlanta don't read the dribble you write, but regardless, your actions are irresponsible. The owners are hard-working immigrants who fled here from South Korea when the Koreans exiled people of Chinese descent. They are honest and giving people. You have served these kind people a great injustice and I hope you will return to Noodle to try other items on their menu and then retract your statements in the next edition of your column.
-- I. Threadgoode, Decatur