10' Tree Free Zone, with a 3' pavement extension on each side.
PROBLEMS WITH THE COUNTY PLAN
The County Plan ruins a local treasure
The Rustic Road is a significant tourist draw and valued resource of our community.
The wholesale removal of thousands of trees bordering the road will destroy the Rustic Road forever.
The County Plan doesn't consider State law protections for Rustic Roads
In implementing road maintenance and improvements to a Rustic Road, the County is required to preserve the rustic qualities of the road  and road improvements must be kept as narrow as possible to retain the rustic charm of the road as well as keeping the driver’s speed lower.
Wisconsin law also provides that improvements be kept to a minimum to avoid disturbance of vegetation.
The County Plan ignores these protections.
Why would a 3-foot-wide shoulder be needed on a rustic road with lower posted speeds and less traffic than Highways 51, 70, C, G, M or N?
Former Governor Scott Walker captured the purpose and spirit of Rustic Roads in this comment from the 2019Rustic Roads Guide:
“Most of Wisconsin’s roads are a means to move people or goods safely and efficiently. Rustic Roads, in contrast, are the destination, offering you an excuse to slow down and stop to enjoy the view."
Highway Department's rationale for Eliminating the Trees doesn't make sense
Eliminating the tree tunnels will reduce maintenance costs by enabling the road to dry out and reduce freeze-thaw cycle damage to the road surface.
No "extra" maintenance has been performed on Highway K than on other nearby County Highways
It has been ~ 25 years since Highway K has been resurfaced, the same as Highway M. The Highway Department indicated that it has not performed routine maintenance on County roads , including Highway K, for years because of budget constraints.
The cost of removing and disposing of thousands of trees along Highway K will far exceed the "imaginary" excess maintenance costs the Highway Department now claims.
The Facts just don't support the Highway Department's rationale for widening County K and removing the trees!
Reducing the Speed Limit would Address the Highway Department's Alleged Safety Concerns
The County also contends that the 13-foot-wide Tree Removal Zone is motivated by safety concerns. However, the County's own Highway Safety Commission has not recommended expanding the shoulder or the Tree Removal Zone for safety reasons.
The Safety Commission is required to review accident data and make written recommendations of any safety corrective actions identified. No safety recommendations were identified by the Safety Commission regarding Highway K.
Again, the County's justification for the project does not hold up to scrutiny
Moreover, any legitimate safety concern can be addressed by reducing the speed limit or improving signage
HELP US SAVE OUR RUSTIC ROAD!!!