Good morning: Friday, Sept. 12

  • Article by: Scott Gillespie
  • Updated: September 12, 2008 - 9:52 AM

We're gearing up for the weekend with a number of topics on our minds. The Editorial Board will be weighing in on U.S. energy policy, an insurance industry effort to raise the age for obtaining a driver's license, and the new 35W bridge. We'll look at the bridge in a Sunday editorial and, among other issues, we'll write about the controversial decision to go with the highest bidder to build the bridge. In short, taxpayers may end up paying $71 million more because a national construction firm was selected over a locally based firm with a lower bid. MnDOT stands by its selection process and says the winning bid was far superior to three losing bids. We don't expect our readers to have the background necessary to critique that decision, but we are wondering how you would answer this question: What was more important to you, an early completion date that would get the bridge open for traffic as soon as possible, or the total pricetag? As always, we welcome your thoughts... 

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clearthinkerSep. 12, 0811:46 AM

It is interesting that the democrats at the Strib think the readers are too dumb to to analyze and determine for themselves the benefit and cost of completing the bridge ahead of schedule. It will be a great benefit to some people and less so to others, and we don't need the brainiacs on the editorial board to tell us that. Fair warning to you and comrades in the DFL, we citizens just aren't as ignorant as you think. Also, you're not as smart as you think you are.

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elmi0001Sep. 12, 0811:57 AM

It's like a Mastercard commercial; Bonus to contractor - $27,000,000 Cost to Taxpayers - $x.00 Cost of _________ - $x.00 Having the bridge completed safely in less time; priceless

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aaronmdSep. 12, 0812:06 PM

Clearthinker- the Strib was suggesting that the average reader does not have the skill to analyze all the technical issues (which is more important than completion timeframe) that went in to the decision of who to select as the winning bid.

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schmk01Sep. 12, 0812:19 PM

Clearthinker - Political freaks like youself drive me nuts! Why is it that you ALWAYS associate a comment as being a Democratic or Republican one? Give me, and everyone else a freakin' break!! I am neither a Democrat or Republican, so don't claim that because you don't like what I'm saying here, that I MUST be a Democrat! But, I can already see your response accusing me of being a Democrat. I for one am excited that the bridge will be open early. The alternate routes that I take to and from work every day have gone from 20-25 minutes, to 40-45 minutes. The government spends/wastes all kinds of my tax dollars on other things that I never see any noticable benefit from, so for them to fork over $27 million for something that I can definitely notice, is more than fine with me. I am sure all of the businesses that have been suffering because of the bridge closure will be even more excited than I am.

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a1batrossSep. 12, 0812:25 PM

When rebuilding a bridge that has collapsed unexpectedly, it's important to do so as quickly as possible, without regard for cost. Money and safety are less important criteria than getting the bridge back up quickly and pretending this whole ugly embarrassing incident never happened.

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Stan55Sep. 12, 0812:26 PM

As one who has lived thru several earthquate related bridge and freeway failures it is clear to me that getting traffic, ie life and commerace moving as fast as possible is always a bargin. When the Santa Monica Freeway went down in a quake the contractor had a chance at a thirty million dollar bonus for early completion--it was done in record time by the hiring of high quality crews from all over the USA, working 24/7. He earned the 30 mil. and the southern CA economy was several billion dollars better off. In contrast the Loma Prielta quake in the bay area occurred in 1989 and they still have not got things finished. No bonus, lots of Unioon hassle and of course the famous San Francisco and Bay area Governments talk, talk, talk,

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mcquillan1Sep. 12, 08 1:00 PM

First off, lets not question the political leanings of the Strib, that was established many years ago, however, the question of early completion and the bonus, I agree with those who think the bonus was, in the long run, well worth the payout. The effect on the overall economy will be felt soon. I normally don't agree with Government overspending, but in this particular case, I think we will all, at some time or another, feel the impact of this major interstate bridge being done early

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twenty30Sep. 12, 08 1:00 PM

While I'm sure the contruction company is still recieving a large bonus, you have to remember it "cost" them millions more to complete it early.

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danhaglundSep. 12, 08 1:16 PM

Pick 2.

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dlp123Sep. 12, 08 1:19 PM

I was watching the news the other day (I think WCCO) and they said every day the bridge is not in use it costs Minnesotans and Minnesota $400,000 so if you add that up and times it by the number of days they will finish early witch is about 70 days that equals $28 million. So if these numbers are accurate I think the $27 million is justified.

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