Maybe a new U.S. Highway 101 through town wouldn't be so bad - then again, maybe it would.

Seasiders complain about the tourist invasion, but the tourist industry is to Seaside what Boeing is to Seattle. Without it, shops and restaurants can't pay their rent and need to close up, and single mothers, high school kids and others are jobless. Not good! I like tourists year-round. The more the merrier. Will construction and a wider 101 keep tourists from Seaside? One surfer I talked to said "not a chance." He is probably right.

Consider TrendWest, the outlet mall and the latest motels on the river. Seaside is no longer the darling little town on the ocean. So maybe we have to get practical, like it or not.

In Coeur d'Alene, Idaho, Government Way is an attractive boulevard centered with trees that turn gold and orange in the fall with a grassy green base. At one time, this was suggested for 101. Real nice.

According to Jamie Barclay in Astoria, the ODOT project leader (and I feel that she is truthful), the raised median or traffic separator will be a six- to seven-inch concrete curb and a space for landscaping. The city will be responsible for an approximate $164,000 cost to relocate water and sewer lines. The utility companies will be responsible for other lines like electricity, etc.

It will be bad for businesses and homes in the way, and hellish for people who live on Wahanna Road during construction. A "yes" or "no" vote needs deep thought - and a look into the future - before marking that ballot.

LILLIAN MOORE LIND

Seaside

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