Friday, July 15, 2016
Shuttling To Boring Bertha Pondering America's Biggest Boondoggle
In the video a work crew rides a shuttle inside the Highway 99 tunnel being dug deep under downtown Seattle.
The crew carrying shuttle stops when it reaches the tunnel boring machine known as Bertha, with the work crew then disembarking.
I knew Bertha had made a lot of progress since she began digging again after a lengthy repair operation.
I was not aware the double decker highway is already being constructed where Bertha has already done her boring.
Native Washingtonian, Steve A, thinks the Highway 99 Alaskan Way Viaduct Replacement Project deserves the honor of being America's Biggest Boondoggle.
I have long respectfully disagreed with Steve A on this important subject, believing, as I have long documented, that Fort Worth's Trinity River Central City Uptown Panther Island Vision deserves the honor of being known as America's Biggest Boondoggle.
Yes, the Fort Worth Project is small in scope, compared to the Seattle project. And yes, the Seattle project has had some problems, and controversies.
However, the Seattle project is moving along, scheduled to be completed long before Fort Worth's currently stalled project.
The Fort Worth Boondoggle does not even have an actual project timeline.
The reasons I think Fort Worth deserves the America's Biggest Boondoggle title, instead of Seattle?
The Seattle project is fully funded, fully engineered. The Fort Worth project is not fully funded, hence the money has never been available to fully engineer the design of Fort Worth's project, hence construction problems, like Fort Worth's three simple bridges being built over dry land, have been abandoned for months, due to serious design errors.
The Seattle project is run by a qualified project engineer. The Fort Worth project is run by the unqualified son of a local congresswoman, hired to motivate his mother to secure federal funds for the under-funded project. That funding mechanism has not worked out well.
Both alleged Boondoggle's have waterfront elements. With Fort Worth's project creating a waterfront where none previously existed. Seattle's project greatly enhances the existing Seattle waterfront, tying it directly to downtown by removing the Alaskan Way Viaduct obstacle.
Another big Boondoggle difference.
In Seattle, even though the water is clean, clear and safe, there is no way the Seattle project's project engineer would engineer Rockin' the Bay Happy Hour Inner Tube Floats in Elliott Bay, because, well, that would be ridiculous and no one would participate.
While in Fort Worth, the Frat Boy who mis-engineer's Fort Worth's Boondoggle, engineers all sorts of events in the polluted waters of the Trinity River.
It's sort of a Nero fiddling while Rome burns type deal....