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Letter to the Editor: Proposed Middlebury rail project is unsafe and unnecessary

I should like to add my voice to that of Bruce Hiland and the others who continue to describe the shortcomings and dangers inherent in the Middlebury “train-tunnel” project as currently proposed. While Jim Gish and others have done their best to mitigate the problems, this does not change the fact that the tunnel arrangement as currently proposed is unsafe and unnecessary.
It has been noted that a derailment and explosion in the proposed tunnel would likely damage a considerable part of the downtown with attendant loss of life. It has been documented that the track clearance has already been changed from twenty-three feet to twenty-one feet and that nothing in the statutes precludes a further change to eighteen feet. At that clearance level we would be spared days of blasting and disruption and could have a safer arrangement that would also provide for proper storm water removal.
Please, fellow citizens, although you may be focused on the Holiday Season, please take a moment to write to the Governor, your legislators and the “Addy” to add your voice to those opposing this assault on our community. Yes, the New Year with all that it offers is coming, but so is the summer of 2018 and another stage in this unnecessary project that will affect us all.
Max Kraus
Middlebury

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