Thursday, January 06, 2011

WY road improvements about future needs, but not about the future needs.

Like anything else in government, this is just about how to spend the cheddar.
The hundreds of millions of dollars of it.
Its like taunting a puppy with a toy - they get so excited they just piddle all over the place.

Of the people involved, one believes the projects are based on the "state's future transportation needs while another believes that WYDOT is spending money "to preserve existing roads rather than prepare for future growth."

Sounds more like a bumbling teenager trying to conjure up a good story (a lie) on the spot than this does of a reasoned and justified spending of tax payer dollars; the mythical creature that politicians claim to be.

-- Frank Moretti of TRIP, the Washington, D.C.- based national nonprofit transportation research organization that compiled the report that also identified 25 projects in WY that can support the increased movement of people, goods and natural resources and enhance economic development.

The document, Moretti said, provides a blueprint of the status of the state's future transportation needs.

-- Martin Kidner, state planning engineer for the WYDOT, said : 'the money received by the agency is being spent to preserve existing roads rather than to prepare for future growth.'

But we need trucks to be able to take advantage of its (the roads) advantages.  (see below)
Whatever that means.  If you ask Matt Mead, advantage means government getting more while drivers are paying more for fuel.

Speaking of Matt Mead's superbly liberal suggestion - Wyoming has $290 million here to spend just on roads - and that is not yet enough to the tune that drivers and businesses should be punished MORE for driving in Wyoming?

the Billings Gazette
Group suggests highway projects to help spur Wyoming development

CHEYENNE, Wyoming - A $290 million modernization of the entire length of Interstate 80 in Wyoming is the most-needed project for future economic development, according to a new report. (story continues after break)
Well, the report is made by the people who get to spend the money - is that not a biased perspective?  If a company is designed to tell people how to spend money, when they already have the plan to spend it anyway, would they not go out of business if they do not "justify" how to spend it?  And what kind of loopholes are there when the organization conjuring up this report is a "Non-Profit" from Washington D.C. ?  Do they really think that we are that stupid that just because someone says "it is" and that "the study says" that it must be true?

Related :
Dec. 16, 2010 : 
$9.7M to save the antelope ... Really? ... Is WY Dep. of Transportation over spending? ...
Nov. 15, 2010 :
WY, a Fuel Tax Hike is the Worst Idea EVER. ... Umm ... Because it ends in "tax"
The suggested upgrade would include construction of variable-speed lanes and truck climbing lanes.

“Wyoming's transportation system is the backbone of the state's economy,” said Frank Moretti of TRIP, the Washington, D.C.-based national nonprofit transportation research organization that compiled the report.

The report, released Wednesday during a media conference, identified 25 projects in the state to provide Wyoming with a transportation system that can support the increased movement of people, goods and natural resources and enhance economic development.

The document, Moretti said, provides a blueprint of the status of the state's future transportation needs.

Martin Kidner, state planning engineer for the Wyoming Department of Transportation, said during the media conference that the money received by the agency is being spent to preserve existing roads rather than to prepare for future growth.

He said TRIP representatives looked at highway projects that WYDOT has studied and that have been identified by local government officials as necessary.

After the media conference, Jonathan Downing of the Wyoming Contractors Association said WYDOT has had to pull back from additional improvements to the state's highway system because of a shortage of money.

The supplemental budget recommended by former Gov. Dave Freudenthal included $52 million in additional money for highways, with the appropriation to be ongoing.

Downing said he was pleased Gov. Matt Mead, who took office Monday, has voiced support for investment in infrastructure.

Downing's organization has 230 members, including 90 general contractors.

“Our members see the damage to the system. They see where the potholes are,” he said.

Downing noted that with construction costs down, now is the time to get great deals on highway projects.

“It's a great to-do list,” Downing said of TRIP's report.

The other 24 road projects recommended by TRIP are:
  • Widen 36-mile portion of Wyoming 59 in Campbell County to four lanes. $97 million.
  • Reconstruct and redesign I-80 and I-25 interchange in Cheyenne. $325 million.
  • Construct west beltway loop in Casper. $58 million. 
  • Construct new 1.6 mile connector route in Torrington to replace intersection of U.S. 85 and U.S. 20/26. $35 million.
  • Modernize about 100 miles of county roads in Campbell County. $101 million.
  • Widen U.S. 20/26 from two to four lanes between Casper and Shoshoni. $342 million.
  • Widen Wind River Canyon tunnels. $36 million. 
... Read More from the Billings Gazette

Related :

CBS channel 5 - kgwn : Top 25 Surface Transportation Projects
... "The key is that all of these projects are tied into significant improvements of mobility," said Frank Moretti, TRIP Policy and Research Director. "Allowing a lot of these roads that are already carrying very large trucks in not adequate conditions, to modernize them so the state can really take advantage of its advantages."
... Funding for some of the projects is still in the works making this a long term plan. However some of the jobs, like the Beltway Loop in Casper, could start in the next few months.
-- Watch Video


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