Monday, March 16, 2009

Pile on the North Shore Connector

The Post Gazette has jumped on the Trib's "We hate the tunnels under the river" bandwagon and published it's own article here about how things went so terribly wrong with the North Shore Connector. Additionally, there is a pretty good timeline here for dates associated with the Spine Line (which ultimately morphed into the North Shore Connector).

Once again, let me state for the record, I'm not happy with the final product, vs. the original idea. However, to stop now, would be even more foolish. Considering the $$$$ already dumped beneath the river, and the ridiculousness of the costs, to have two $200 million dollar tunnels completely empty and unused beneath the river would be utter insanity. If nothing else, the connector could be a foothold for future expansion in the direction of the airport and North Hills. Are those chances far fetched? Perhaps, but with a new transit friendly administration in the White House, the prospects are better than they would have been just two years ago.

Having said that, I have to ask this question. What are we as a city/county/region gaining by continuing to beat up the North Shore Connector? The word's out, the project is a bust and alot of people are pretty angry about it. In my mind, if people continue to beat this thing up, they will get exactly what they want, nothing. The problem is, that is nothing is something in this case. It is nothing with several years and a couple of hundred million dollars wasted and no gain at all in service. Which sounds worse to you; overpaying but gaining benefit in some way or overpaying and gaining two hollow, empty, and unused tunnels under the river?

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