consultants are sandburs

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Pedestrian deaths on Highway 10, and things a couple of elected officials have to say about it. Reporting is, "On MnDOT's list of the top 150 statewide locations for crash costs, the U.S. 10 stretch ranks 122nd, [MnDOT spokesperson Kent] Barnard said. Over the past decade, the only other pedestrian fatality along the highway other than the recent four was in 2010."

PiPress reporting here. The Armstrong - Hwy 10 intersection improvement appears to be a sound thing, but it was done cart before the horse, with the horsing around with Sunwood, the isolation of Coborns, being done before the interchange is changed.

Politics.

Now it is "Where will the money come from," with the clear answer being as always, from taxes, at one level of government or several. They are public roads after all.

It seemed pretty dumb to mess around with Sunwood, at great cost, while the main improvement was ignored back-burner, and delayed by the spending on putting the cart before horse.

It was Bad Politics.

But good for possibly generating short term Sunwood commissions? Whose goal dominated and ostensibly determined what the public's interest was in sequencing things?

If the present lame duck council had not diddled around in ill-conceived and ill-implemented land speculation, dating from Matt Look's tenure on council; and wasting money, diluting goals, and sending mixed messages to higher levels of government, would Armstrong have been already completed?

Would amounts spent on Landform have been better directed?

What can the new Ramsey city council learn? Don't play banker to Indiana speculator-promoters wanting to bootstrap public "borrow-to-lend" risk-taking into promoter profit? Things like that? We wait and we hope. Including the hope Anoka is sincere and on the same page with Ramsey in terms of fixing the Hwy 47 mess in Anoka, and in improving the traffic light bottleneck beginning at the west end of Anoka's stretch along Hwy. 10.

Finally, the Armstrong improvement MUST be justified as a safety and emergency cross-track proposition. All this garbage that doing it will turn a Town Center sow's ear into a magically prosperous silk purse; believe it if it makes you feel better; but knowing when you are being crudely propagandized and resenting it is best. If hoping that changing Armstrong and getting the Northstar stop will cause some private sector White Knight to show up with those mythical wheelbarrows full of money to rescue the distressed project at outrageously prosperous terms to City of Ramsey, please do prepare for disillusionment. So far, as Terry Hendriksen has noted, the wheelbarrows full of money, to the extent there at all, have been traveling the other way.

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