Thursday, March 27, 2008

Boondoggle Road?

Maplecrest extension cost swells to $55M
County Council plans economic impact study to find if it's worthwhile
Link (NS)

"About $2.5 million has already been spent on plans, land and other preparation — without one drop of concrete being poured.

Now soaring cost estimates and doubts about its usefulness are causing some officials to question whether the most expensive 1.5 miles of road in Allen County history should be built at all."

[...]

"Congress awarded about $9 million to the project in 2005, but construction estimates that have increased from $21.2 million in 1996 to nearly $55 million have caused several council members to question whether the project’s benefits would justify its expense — which they fear could affect the construction and maintenance of other roads and bridges."

[...]

"In addition to the money already pledged by Congress, commissioners propose using vehicle taxes, the county’s major bridge fund and funds generated by a tax incremental financing district (TIF) — which would divert taxes from new development in the area — to pay for the project. But a TIF generates money only if development actually happens, and even then the available dollars would be millions short of the needed amount. That’s why the county said it may hire a lobbyist — at about $5,000 per month — to seek another $8 million or so from Congress."
$55 million of public money to build a 1.5 mile road on the fringe of the city

versus

$65 million of public money leveraged to $125 million to build a ballpark, hotel, condos, retail, and a parking garage downtown


"“This is a roll of the dice, based on questionable data,” Moss said. “The public’s appetite for projects like this (after Harrison Square) is fairly low.”"
I would hope that most people would have a low appetite for 1.5 mile roads that cost $55 million.

Would the public's appetite have been whetted in the absence of Harrison Square?

It's still $55 million for a hop across the Maumee.

5 comments:

Joe said...

Exactly! $55 million for a road that goes a mile or two from FW to New Haven, and $130 million for a new ballpark which is part of a grander downtown revitalization project. Tell me John, which is the bigger boondoggle?? Maybe you should get all riled up again and start fighting this road.

Jeff Pruitt said...

This is a COMPLETE waste of money - even more so than HS. But it's my understanding that, thanks to HB1001, this boondoggle will have to be approved via referendum and that has little to no chance of happening.

We shall see...

John B. Kalb said...

Joe - I agree that this is another ( )doggle. And remember that Mr. Peters was the guy who traveled with our last mayor to Indianapolis to talk Ms. Musgrave into approving the "what we may live to regret" back-up of the bonds with property tax levies!!
Jeff is right, this will probably be our first referendum under the new law passed in Indy last month.
Stay tuned.

Joe said...

I would love to see this road, it would make travel from the northeast side (where I live) to New Haven/southeast side much easier and faster. But the costs are just getting ridiculous. They should have built this road years ago, now they are paying the price for waiting so long!

ROACH said...

RE-ELECT
NELSON PETERS- BRIDGE TO NOWHERE!
heres the "Roach K.I.S.S. SOLUTION.
http://maps.google.com/maps?f=l&hl=en&geocode=&q=henry+landscaping&near=n+river+road+fort+wayne+indiana&sll=37.0625,-95.677068&sspn=32.748002,59.238281&ie=UTF8&ll=41.087018,-85.052204&spn=0.015203,0.028925&t=h&z=15
SEE WHERE MAYSVILLE ROAD ENDS?AND THE BOAT RAMP? AND THE ENTRANCE TO KREAGER PARK? AND SOUTH RIVER ROAD? YOU CAN TOSS A ROCK ACROSS- WHY NOT A SIMPLE SHORT BRIDGE- SUCH AS THE EASTERN LOT LINE OF THE SLUDGE LAGOONS, OR ANYWHERE ALONG THERE, TO START, SEEING AS HOW WE ARE IN DIFFICULT ECONOMIC TIMES. WHY SPEND 55 MILLION IN DEVELOPER/CONTRACTOR WELFARE, ON ANOTHER GRANDIOSE PROJECT- WHEN THERE IS A SIMPLE, FISCALLY CONSERVATIVE ALTERNATIVE OPTION, THAT ACCOMPLISHES THE SAME GOAL- A RIVER CROSSING BETWEEN LANDIN ROAD, AND US 930? SEEMS A FEW ROAD WIDENINGS, A SHORT BRIDGE, AND SOME PAVING WORK THROUGH RIVERHAVEN(POOR IGNORED TAXPAYERS)MIGHT INCREASE THEIR PROPERTY VALUES, AND THEN HOLD OFF UNTIL THE ECONOMY TURNS AROUND?
OF COURSE- THIS IS FORT WAYNE, SO:
RE-ELECT NELSON PETERS BRIDGE TO NOWHERE