Bend over citizens, we've got a present for you //
Wednesday - December 29, 2004
The polititcians continue to be short-sighted. This time on the state level. In a region that is bursting at the seams with traffic you would think that getting people to use alternative transportation (read: not cars) would be top priority. Especially when you are considering building a major new highway because of said traffic problems. Instead, they ax the inclusion of a bike path to shave some cash. I'll leave you with a couple of quotes:
The estimated cost of the 18-mile toll highway, which would link Interstate 270 in Montgomery County with Interstate 95 in Prince George's, was raised last month to as much as $2.1 billion -- $400 million more than previous estimates.
State officials said dropping the bike path would save about $100 million on the intercounty connector. The savings were factored into the most recent cost estimate.
So, with the bike path the total estimate would be 2.2 BILLION, meaning the bike path would represent 4.5% of the total cost. $100 million is a lot of scratch, but in the big picture, a drop in the bucket, and surely worth it from a lot of angles
"For two reasons, we decided to remove the . . . path," said Douglas Simmons, deputy administrator for the State Highway Administration. "One was for cost and two was for reducing the footprint on the environment."
Whoah, I'm dizzy from all of the spin. You mean these guys are suddenly interested in the environment? They are going to construct a massive highway for cars and they are worried about the footprint of a bike path? They also might want to check into the pollution factor.
Montgomery County Council member Nancy Floreen (D-At Large) said she would continue pushing for a bike path, "but not to the detriment of getting the road built."
Thanks. I hope your constituents remember that when it's time for reelection