St. Croix bridge plan evaluation slogged down by Gulf oil leak

  • Article by: KEVIN GILES , Star Tribune
  • Updated: June 27, 2010 - 12:41 AM

The diversion of resources to fight the spill will delay the latest version of a crucial federal evaluation.

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pedrohansonJun. 27, 10 5:53 AM

Or in the words of Bill Clinton, what is the definition of IS? This is another example of why our nation needs a revolt against the cancer of liberalism which is destroying us from within. The scenery of the river already has: a smokestack, the old bridge, a factory, a town, houses, boats, a marina, people. Another bridge will do little to "impact" the scenery. We've wasted millions of dollars already studying, suing, moving clams. Not to mention the inconvenience to thousands of people each day. Bridges add their own character to the scenery. If the insanity of liberalism were at the current lethal stage in the 1930's, the Golden Gate bridge would have never been built. The Stillwater bridge will never be built. The old lift bridge will eventually become unusable for vehicles, and then traffic will have to go through Hudson, creating a whole new set of problems. Then the liberals will have the audacity to blame the free market for the problems caused by their own undermining of the market.

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pooperheadJun. 27, 10 6:38 AM

Other than that, you hit it right on the money. I want to know how "a smaller, more affordable bridge" will be less noticable. The length cannot be changed so that leaves the width. Is a 2 lane bridge less noticable than a four lane? Maybe we could have a 1 lane bridge with a flag man at each end allowing only one direction of travel at a time. Would this be acceptable to the Sierra club? The conjestion would be no worse than it is now. By conjestion, I mean in the air from the cars exhaust idling in wait to cross the river. I live in Stillwater, if I want a view free of human intervention, I'll just go half a mile up the river. Sierra Club, get off my side.

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patrickjdJun. 27, 10 6:39 AM

is that the new bridge will only have four lanes! Evidently the original design is outdated. Not surprising after 40 years of obstructionist delays. If taxpayer resources are going to "plug the damn hole" someone at the MN state capital should propose a bill that would have unlimited funding in it to fight frivolous lawsuits and just build the damn bridge.

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plathedJun. 27, 10 6:54 AM

It contributes to urban sprawl that results in unnecessary consumption of oil products used for the unnecessary transportation.

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jojobadJun. 27, 10 7:19 AM

Obstructionists in many forms come from all parts of the political spectrum. The sad part is that America has a system that allows a small minority of constituents to block good construction projects or good legislation from becoming reality even though large majorities of the constituency are for them. In 12 years the cost of this project has gone from approximately $150 million to $668 million because of a handful of detractors. What a horrible waste of money.

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johngary66Jun. 27, 10 7:20 AM

Where do you people think that money is going to come from? I guarantee you there will be a new Viking Stadium long before a new St. Croix bridge. There are plenty of river crossings within a few miles of Stillwater. If people don't want to live in Minnesota why should we spend our money to help them move to Wisconsin? You can rant and rave but it won't do you any good.

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patrickjdJun. 27, 10 7:42 AM

You are right on one part. Liberals know that a new bridge would be an economic boom for Wisconsin. The frivolous lawsuits have nothing to do with the environment. The economically smart things to do would be to build the bridge or create conditions that would favor more development on the MN side of the St. Croix. God help the Liberals if that lift bridge ever collapses.

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SupervonJun. 27, 10 7:57 AM

and forgotten about the ding-dong tree-hugging Sierra Club, this would have been done years ago, cost tons less and would be so much safer than it is today. Instead, we allow a bunch of highly paid lawyers to tell us to live in caves while they get millions of dollars from YOU. Get it built before more die or are injured. Remember, the next death could be YOU or your kids! Do YOU want THAT?

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Willy53Jun. 27, 10 7:59 AM

IF Pooperhead would take the time to understand the problem MNDOT faces in trying to get a crossing in that location that is not enormously expensive and disruptive to the valley he might understand the value of a downscaled bridge. Because of the steep banks on the Wisconsin side a lower freeway style accomodating 65mph bridge with 4-lane traffic and turn lanes is impossible to build and must be elevated to a rediculous height. The desire for MNDOT to build a freeway right through the middle of the Stillwater business district is part and parcel of the bridge plan. One makes no sense without the other. A much cheaper design all the way around would be to design a 45mph boulevard through Stillwater, enabling a lower bridge and reducing the speeds and giving designers many more options less disruptive of the river, the surrounding valley and friendlier to the citizens of Stillwater, especially the historic South Hill which will be greatly impacted by bridge pollution (noise, air, visual and traffic through neighborhoods). IF you take the time to talk with residents of Stillwater many are not supportive of the bridge. Spending a billion dollars of taxpayer money for a crossing just to get traffic out of downtown Stillwater is not a viable solution in this era of efficiency and leveraged public spending. The resonsible solution environmentally, culturally, fiscally and for the residents of Stillwater would be a redesigned freeway and bridge. The stakeholder process MNDOT put forward from the beginning was flawed due to the absence of a downsized option. The three designs considered were all based on the freeway/megabridge scenario. Conservatives and deficit hawks should be thankful to the Sierra Club for giving us one more chance to get it right and save hundreds of millions of taxpayer funds.

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Willy53Jun. 27, 10 8:07 AM

A billion dollars, Pedrohanson? Is that your idea of efficient spending for this span. This mega bridge will bring congestion you can only have nightmares about. Eventually bigger freeways bring deteriorating roadways and congestion problems. This is not about "liberals". This is about good stewardship of our own community and especially a dwindling source of highway funds driven by conservative tax policy. Your government can't afford in any way the billion dollar crossing. Better alternatives exist. A bridge is needed, just not one that exacerbates a problem we're trying to fix.

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