Thursday, October 16, 2008
A very revealing message is contained in this latest schedule update from the big firm running the environmental impact statement (EIS) for the "Salem River Crossing" project: the section headed Transit/TSM/TDM [italics added] reveals that, just as it appeared to those who attend project meetings, there has been no meaningful consideration of ideas for managing bridge use during the peak use periods rather than trying to find financing to build a $600+ million bridge.
In other words, the whole exercise has been about trying to ram through an already-preferred idea (an expensive new bridge) rather than a fresh look at the issues and search for alternatives.
Now that the economy is melting down, the chances of Salem being able to get federal funds or make up a local share for a third bridge are dwindling even further. Meanwhile, we will continue to pay millions to CH2M-Hill to produce a report to present the foregone conclusion desired by the road gang.