Tuesday, January 11, 2011

DOT preparing to go All In to prop up the corpse of Pabst Farms and superfluous Aurora Summit Hospital

Yesterday an anonymous comment on the Political Environment blog offered some updated info on the Sawyer Road/ Hwy. P interchange planned as frosting on the cake of Pabst Farms housing development, Aurora Summit Hospital and a vaporous, hallucinated "Regional Destination Shopping Mall".

We learned that the $20+ million upgrade to the I-94 Hwy P interchange is ready to begin--contracts let, and ready to go.   Also, that  Pabst Farms housing development has returned the huge swathes of land intended to be for the more pricey (phase II) and insanely pricey (Phase III) enclaves of the Pabst Farms Experience back into plain old farm land.  This lets them pay less real estate taxes on what formerly was  designated as residential land.

Good news it is--the part about the re-classified land.  But...  The DOT's I-94 and Sawyer Road  interchange foolishness is NOT yet planned, NOT under contract and NOT about-to-happen as the commenter mistakenly stated yesterday. (hey, it's hard to keep up with this moving target).

But it is in the plans, bigger than ever, just shoved off until later.  That's ok; that's good news.  Means we still have opportunities to comment , criticize and harpoon the DOT plan to waste money trying to prop up Pabst Farms and Aurora Summit.
 Here's what is in the actual 2011 plan:
1.  Resurfacing  I-94 for one half mile east and one half mile west of  Hwy P (Sawyer Rd.) at a cost of $1.3 million is to happen in 2011.  Project # 406 in the SEWRPC Preliminary Transportation Improvement Plan, 2011-2012.

2.  Also in the 2011 plan is Project  #404: a Park and Ride Lot at Sawyer Rd and I 94.  This is a planning expenditure only.  It is redundant; there is a park and ride lot at Hwy 67, just a bit more than one mile from Hwy P.

And, here's the elephant in the living room:

3.  Project #436:  They'll spend $1.92 million just on the planning of  "Reconstruction of  I 94, Hwy P interchange, adding an East-bound off-ramp and a West-bound on-ramp".

The nearly $9 million that was spent two years ago acquiring land and doing initial clearing, grubbing and crossovers, now has added to it $1.3 million in resurfacing I 94 around the interchange. 

They have spent/committed a total of about $12 million on this boondoggle in support of the dying-mostly-dead development at Pabst Farms, Aurora Summit Hospital and a laughable Regional Shopping "Destination".

Sensible people need to get together a coordinated plan to get Scotty fired up about saving money / balancing the budget by dumping this ill-conceived and wasteful highway boondoggle, daring him to keep funding this clown act while the State of Wisconsin is mired in deficits.

1 comment:

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Of the biblical allotment of three score and ten I have lived only three of them more than a bicycle ride from one of the Great Lakes. I grew up ten blocks from Lake Erie in the (once Irish/Italian ghetto, now newly-hip) "Near West Side" of Cleveland. I can still cycle to the Milwaukee lakefront in an hour and a half; but, a round-trip has always been more than I would (noror ever did) attempt. -0- I'm a "...somewhat combative pacifist and fairly cooperative anarchist," after the example of Grace Paley (1922-2007). -0- I'm always cheerful when I pay my taxes (having refused--when necessary--to pay that portion of them dedicated to war). -0- And I always, always vote.