Re: No-build alternatives
- From: John Lansford <jlnsford@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
- Date: Sat, 06 Feb 2010 23:21:54 -0500
Larry G <gross.larry@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:
On Feb 6, 9:23 pm, "o u t e n d" <n o n e @ n o n e . c o m> wrote:
"Nathan Perry" <npe...@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote in message
As we know, when studies are made for proposed highway projects, one of
the studied alternatives is always the "no-build" alternative,
consisting of doing nothing other than continuing routine maintenance of
the existing road (if any), or sometimes carrying out a minimum amount
of construction to keep the road functional.
These are usually included as a control measure, to compare the cost of
a project with the cost incurred if it is not carried out. The
expectation is usually that new construction will have a higher cost
initially, but that the no-build alternative will be more expensive on a
continual basis, as the status-quo becomes less and less functional and
requires more and more upkeep.
But how many times has the no-build alternative actually been chosen as
the preferred alternative, on purpose, as a direct result of study (that
is, not by default because of the eventual cancellation of a project)?
And, as a more controversial aside I am sure, how many times should it,
in hindsight, have been chosen?
The proposed route of I-73 in Michigan for one. More specifically the
section of US-223. The study itself was only undertaken because Michigan
was given some free federal dollars to do so. The study did make
recommendations for safety improvements to US-223.
"no build" sometimes said to be "no action" but in a couple I've seen
the "no build" included things like access-management and timing
traffic signals, removing bottlenecks, etc.
That's not a real "no build"; we call that a functional or operational
Building a road in a region that is growing is a self-fulling
prophecy.. the growth WILL go in the direction of the new
infrastructure IMHO and that is not necessarily where it should go but
the NEPA does not address that question.
Nonsense, Larry. I can show you several roads here around Raleigh
(one of the fastest growing counties in the nation) that have never
been widened, yet have many subdivisions built on them in the last 10
years. Highway widening projects almost always lag behind the
development wave in fast growing areas.
Finally, I'd like to see EACH alternative studied with and without
tolls to see how the various alternatives would compare in a toll road
Tolls are not an option on surface roads, which are the bulk of the
projects in growing areas.
John Lansford, PE
John's Shop of Wood
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