Thursday, August 16, 2007
I-35W: A Pretty Bridge
With Chocolate Syrup And Sprinkles On Top
In the Wednesday Star Tribune, in a story with the headline "A few details, a bunch of uncertainties," (available to read via free subscription), reports that the Minneapolis City Council is already inserting their grandiose visions into the bridge design.
Where to begin - where to begin...
Minneapolis Mayor RT. Rybak - the "RT" stands for Re-Tarded (just kidding - no I'm not)
Minneapolis Mayor, the uber-Liberal R.T. Rybak, is lobbying for a Light Rail lane to be added to the bridge. Pay no attention to the fact that Light Rail only runs from the Mall of America in Bloomington to downtown Minneapolis. Pay no attention to the fact that Light Rail, as far as its future being part of I-35W, is years - maybe decades - from being developed from the location of the collapsed Mississippi River bridge.
Alice Hausman - a great Tax and Spender
On Rybak's side, among many others, we find Alice Hausman, Democrat member of the Minnesota House of Representatives who says, "If we're talking about 'What are our options?' then shouldn't [light rail] be on the table?" Hausman who represents a St. Paul constituency shouldn't be concerning herself with this issue, but she is a member of the House Transportation Committee, therefore she feels entitled to stick her fingers in this pie.
We interrupt this story for some facts, and I know I'm peeing directly into a strong and monsoon-like wind when mixing facts with what Liberals want to believe with their Pie In The Sky ideology, but - as they say - facts are facts.
- The new bridge will actually be two new bridges, five lanes each in each direction, north and southbound lanes. The federal government has pledged $250 million dollars to rebuild the bridge. The project is expected to be completed by 2009.
- The $250 million dollar federal money cannot be used for mass transit. These funds are available to rebuild the bridge.
Now, these are complex and mysterious facts to understand, aren't they? "The $250 million dollar federal money cannot be used for mass transit." Wow - what a gray statement - so ambiguous, isn't it? Maybe it will take some higher education courses that the Pie In The Sky Crowd will have to attend in order for them to wrap their wee little heads around this caveat.
Adding light rail to the bridge opens a can of worms called a prolonged environmental review. God forbid some indigenous form of algae or weed brings rebuilding a bridge to a standstill. Adding light rail to the bridge also calls for different structural specifications since light rail would add significantly more weight to the designs, designs that consider vehicle traffic weight, not the weight of light rail.
The Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) is explaining to the Pie In The Sky crowd that federal money is contingent upon building the new bridge as a replacement of the old one. Details, details...is how the Liberal Minneapolis City Council appears to respond to the federal caveat.
Don "I want it to be a pretty bridge" Samuels
Don Samuels represents north Minneapolis and, according to the Star Tribune, said, "[this bridge is] a part of our cityscape viewed from other bridges."
Diane "a unique and beautiful bridge" Hofstede
In the same Star Tribune story, Council Member Diane Hofstede asked about the "aesthetic issues" of the bridge, asking if the bridge would be "unique and beautiful." Uh-huh...and maybe a level platform on top of the bridge with a proscenium arch where singers and dancers could perform a variety of musicals and Broadway shows! And of course a fireworks display extravaganza after each performance - why, without fireworks, what's the point?!
Sandy "The Cheapskate" Roy
Council Member Sandy Roy - you remember Sandy, she's the Liberal Bleeding Heart who refused to fork over pocket change to a panhandler this past May - is concerned if the bridge will be strong enough for Light Rail at a future date. A date, I'm sure, where unprofitable and revenue-sucking Light Rail will be somehow retrofitted into the bridge.
Thank God that Metropolitan Council Chairman Peter Bell and Lieutenant Governor Carol Molnau, who is the head of MnDOT, sent a letter to Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty saying all this talk about the aesthetics and concerns of Light Rail could stymie and disrupt the timeline of rebuilding what is an essential and necessary bridge.
Of course, this absurd Liberal Exercise in Mental Masturbation wouldn't be complete without Star Tribune columnist (and that's "columnist" used loosely) and BIG-TIME local Liberal Talk Radio FAILURE Nick Coleman. Coleman is to Left of Marx. He called MnDOT's designs for a new bridge, "a joke. I have more impressive finger paintings on my refrigerator door." No you don't, pinhead, no you don't. If you do, make your Little Eichmann Toddler's drawing public and let us decide.
Coleman, as always, is talking out of his arse, putting in zero research while blathering on with nothing more substantive other than what he "believes". Under the collapsed bridge exists a very large natural gas line that feeds into various and numerous lines that provides natural gas to businesses, residences and the University of Minnesota. Trenches exist under the bridge that are part of a state pollution superfund waste site that reroutes contaminants to a pumping station that filters out the impurities. The south side area of the bridge - where there is a park - is built upon land that was used in the early 1900s for coal degassification. Coleman, completely ignorant of these facts, babbles on with Pie In The Sky ideals that are not and can not be implemented into real world bridge solutions.
Coleman also writes that the "[the] sketch [of MnDOTs new bridge design] is just a bunch of lines on an overheard photo of the river, with all the broken debris and horrors of the tragic collapse magically Photoshopped out of the picture."
That "sketch" - actually an overlay - is actually MnDOTs draft design using a photo of the bridge from the year 2000! How did I find out about this mysterious, secretive and well-guarded fact? I asked someone who works for MnDOT. It was yeoman's work of investigative journalism, let me tell you.
Coleman's lack of facts is nothing new, he approaches every issue he writes about without any research, no facts, not bothering to pick up a telephone and asking an expert or anyone who might actually know something about the subject of which he is writing. Nick has only convinced himself to "believe" what he wants to believe, facts be damned. What's it like to be totally bereft of facts, Nick?
Rybak, Hausman, Hofstede, Roy, Samuels, Coleman and the rest of them - Liberal or Conservative (and I've yet to hear any non-Liberals insist on grandiose bridge plans) - you do know that something is wrong with you, don't you? That you suffer from some type of mental deficiency, that there is something wrong with what you call your brain, that your thought process synapses constantly misfire. You all lack something that normal people possess - common sense. Are you "Pod People"?
Federally funded bridges, like federal highways, are utilitarian. They serve the purpose of what a bridge is supposed to do, effectively providing traffic flow over and above areas not conducive to other alternative types of transportation. There are no perks, no pretty designs, no chocolate syrup, no sprinkles on top.
Leave it to a bunch of Liberals - how do I say this politely - to completely f*ck up a wet dream.
Quotes and details for the above post are gathered from the following newspaper stories, most of which may require you to sign up (for free) in order to read them:
St. Paul Pioneer Press: "No place for light rail on bridge, Molnau, Bell say", August 14, 2007
Star Tribune: "A few details, a bunch of uncertainties", August 15, 2007
Star Tribune: Nick Coleman, "Don't let the rush to rebuild obscure the lessons from the bridge collapse", August 15, 2007
PS: it's your turn to wear the dress tonight.
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