Good job, Peoria County Board, Administration and our engineers. Only 15 bridges fall in the category of needed needed or badly needed repair out of 2200 in the entire State of Illinois. Repair funds for the bridge shown today in the JS have been sought since 2003. Construction will start before the bridge becomes called dangerous.
As I and thousands of others have repeatedly stated, repairs are never as exciting as ribbon cutting for a new something or other, like a museum, library, bridge or highway. Like a brand new shiny highway from Peoria to Chicago the 60 year too late loser (Kerners Curve) that one ex-council member, now new candidate, would still like to pursue.
Fortunately, our Republican Congressman Aaron Schock has asked that stimulus funds be redirected to repair of our bridges, roads and transit systems before we start all over again paying engineers and consultants to build new highways. (IB, 12, 2009). Highways that might get a vehicle to the general vicinity of their destination with money no one has. Unfortunately at that point, vehicles become tied up in massive traffic jams that way offset the few minutes saved by getting there faster. And cost hundreds of millions while leaving the old roads in need of constant repair.
Unfortunately, Transportation Director Ray LaHood, under command of his Democrat master, is still trying to push new projects such as a hi-speed rail between Tampa and Orlando, (80 miles currently connected by multi-lane highways) threatening the common sense new Republican Governor of Florida to accept hi-speed rail money or lose it, while Governor Scott is asking that the money be used where Schock recommends, repair of deteriorating old transit systems in the state.
Governor Scott realized that this project would be a massive waste of money and the billions offered the state (that the feds don't have without keeping the presses running) would only pay for the land acquisition, engineers, consultants, lawyer, the FEPA, more bureaucrats, etc., and then leave Florida with the impossible task of raising the money to build and maintain this proposed boondoogle.
But American greed ususlly entices many in the private construction industry and the unions to build something new we can't afford, as one local union chief told me, "we don't give a damn what you build, just build it. we need jobs".
The only part of that statement I agree 110% with? We need jobs.
But then I don't want to sound negative, do I?