Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Bypassages

Bypassage: You! Not That Way, This Way!

Heavy equipment continues to move dirt in my bike path. This current work is 7% completion of a new project along the south bank of the Scottsdale Waterfront called "Soleri Bridge and Plaza". A rendering of one view of what the completed project will look like is here. In total, it's about a $4 million project, according to that informational page linked above. Here's one more view, right where I used to get on the path along the canal.

My Bicycle Helmet Is Pretty Hard

Now, $4 mil for a flashy bridge and plaza sounds like some serious coinage for what amounts to a visual upgrade--there's already a sidewalk across the canal here, and it's not like there are crowds of people queuing up to cross it currently. But, really, that's just a drop in the bucket compared to the $4 billion budget announced by the Arizona Dept of Transportation to widen/expand/losangelosify the valley freeways in a story today, in order to relieve congestion. My kids' school let teachers go this year due to budget cuts. They are cutting law enforcement, health care for kids, and other state programs in a desperate effort to balance the budget. Yet as a society we readily pony up $4 billion to relieve freeway congestion? What kind of BACKYARD MONKEY SHACK are they running at the State House? I could rant on, but a direct quote from the article itself sums it up best I think: "Even with all the improvements being considered by ADOT, almost all of urban I-10 and I-17 will still be congested." If only there were other ways to get from point A to point B, perhaps a human-powered efficient machine that improves your fitness, too. Nope, thought I had it there for a second, but it's gone. I think I shall recline beside the canal like this guy and ponder it for a while...

  Grassy Spot. May Need More Bridge Here.

Mostly I will try to raise interest or influence opinion (even minutely) by doing and photographing rather than preaching here at OSG. There are much better and more vociferous and more loquacious blogs you can go read if preaching's what you seek. But couldn't we possibly agree as a society to go and direct $4.004 billion in a direction that it's really needed in these tough economic times, and postpone the doomed-to-fail freeway congestion relief project and the fancy bridge project until such time as we are a little more flush? And maybe come up with some lower-cost interim solutions? Anyway, the bypassage above is fun to ride through, and I look forward to reporting progress on the project as they move from 7% to 12% and upwards. Get up. Go ride. 

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