The Greenbelt City Council Monday expressed opposition to a proposal to rename the Baltimore-Washington Parkway after ailing former Rep. Gladys Noon Spellman.
"We believe that Gladys deserves something more fitting than a stretch of stark asphalt," said Mayor Richard J. Castaldi. "Someone who has served the people should have something more humanistic and lifegiving as an appreciation."
Democratic Rep. Steny H. Hoyer, who was elected to fill Spellman's House of Representatives seat after she suffered massive heart arrest a year ago, introduced the measure in Congress in late October.
In other business, the council discussed bringing suit against Prince George's County if a redistricting proposal known as the Hendershot Plan is approved by the County Council.
The plan devised by Tom Hendershot, a member of the County Council's redistricting committee and a prominent Prince George's Democrat, would place Greenbelt in the same councilmanic district as Bowie.
Castaldi argues that there is little sense in placing Bowie, a growing rural-suburban district, with Greenbelt, "a beltway community with urban directions."
"Bowie's characteristics are different than Greenbelt's," Castaldi said. "We believe the plan is an obvious case of gerrymandering and does not take the needs of the two communities into consideration."
Castaldi said the city has received considerable backing from other municipalities, including nearby Bladensburg.
The council also awarded a cable television franchise to Storer Cable Communications. Greenbelt became the company's 17th municipal franchise in Prince George's.
The council also discussed traffic problems on Greenbelt Road east of the Baltimore-Washington Parkway.
Area residents have complained that a lack of traffic lights and a high speed limit on the stretch are dangerous for pedestrians.
The city is considering lowering the 50 mph speed limit or placing a traffic light at the intersection of Greenbelt and Mandan roads.