Monday, August 5, 2019

Has Fort Worth Gone Three Bridges Too Far To Nowhere?

Two articles, within the span of a few days in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, regarding the Trinity River Vision Boondoggle, with the first being a pseudo news type article, and the other an editorial in the Sunday August 4, 2019 edition.

The first article bizarrely states the obvious fact that Panther Island is already behind schedule. Progress could slow more as money tightens.

Three paragraphs demonstrating the bizarreness...

The city and Tarrant Regional Water District are about nine to 12 months behind on work needed to make the land ready for the Army Corps to dig the channel, said Sandy Newby, water district finance officer. That’s not including delays to three bridges being built ahead of the channel construction.

“I don’t want to fall farther behind, but I don’t want to get too far in front of our skis either because then we may be spending money we don’t need to spend,” Maenius said.

The Army Corps project’s design is about 60 percent complete and could be done in two stages with the north part of the channel dug first. J.D. Granger, authority executive director, said locals could move as fast or as slow as needed to ready the area for the Corps “We’re not trying to do all the work at once,” he said during the meeting. “If the money came in much faster we could amend the budget.”.

What? Fort Worth and the Tarrant Regional Water District are nine to 12 months behind on work needed to be done so the ditch can be dug? But that element of being behind does not include the three simple little bridges being stuck in slow motion construction for over five years, with the possible completion time currently projected to be at some point in the next decade?

Only nine to 12 months behind? How does one know how far or ahead one is with a project which has never had a project timeline that has not forever constantly shifted ever further into the future?

Someone named Maenius does not want to get too far in front of their skis? What in the world does that mean? Don't want to fall further behind? Further? With a project which began soon after the start of this century, under-funded, mismanaged, ineptly implemented. A project touted as being all about vitally needed flood control in an area which has not flooded for well over half a century. Where we long ago learned the Army Corps of Engineers indicated that area in question could be upgraded to current flood control, post-Katrina standards, by spending around $10 million to shore up the existing levees.

This element of the ongoing con job again became part of the scandal with the release of the Riveron Review, which turned out not to be any sort of forensic audit of the Trinity River Vision Boondoggle, but instead turned out to be a propaganda production rendered worthless due to obvious misinformation fed to the Riveron Reviewers by TRWD's Jim Oliver and his co-hort in conning, J.D. Granger.

Read the details of the actual Army Corps of Engineers recommendations in  Army Corps Of Engineer's Document Contradicts Controversial Riveron Review.

And according to J.D. Granger, he being the Boondoggle's imaginary executive director with no discernible executive skills or experience, the Army Corp's ditch design is about 60 percent complete.


After all this time the design is only barely over half completed? Has the Army Corps figured out yet how they are going to dig that ditch under those freeway overpass-like bridges, without serious problems, you know, like foundations sinking like what has happened with that parking garage which was part of the first, and only, "private" construction on the imaginary island?

And now let us move on to that Sunday editorial in the Star-Telegram titled If Panther Island finally gets back on track with federal money, here’s whom we should thank.

Yes, with all the problems plaguing the Trinity River Central City Uptown Panther Island District Vision Boondoggle, let's think about thanking Fort Worth mayor, Betsy Price, who went panhandling to the White House trying to re-secure federal funds for Fort Worth's imaginary, un-needed flood control debacle, in an area of the town which has not flooded since the 1950s.

While other areas of Fort Worth and Tarrant County do flood, with deadly results, in areas which actually do desperately need flood control measures to mitigate poor urban planning, as in construction allowed without proper infrastructure improvements.

Does the Star-Telegram actually think that somehow Fort Worth's embarrassing Boondoggle is going to slide around the fact there has never been the required cost-benefit analysis necessary for federal funding for such a project? And that the Army Corps of Engineers can not be involved in economic development schemes? We covered these issues last week talking about Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price's Washington Panhandling Adventure.

Let's take a look at three paragraphs from this latest Star-Telegram editorial propaganda about the Boondoggle fraudulently finding federal funding...

The project’s coordinators at the Trinity River Vision Authority seem to have recognized the problem, too. Leaders say they’ve been emphasizing to White House budget officials that the city needs the Trinity River bypass channel to avoid the worst possible flooding scenario.

Federal officials now seem convinced that Panther Island is “a flood control project with economic development attributes,” said Jim Oliver, who, as general manager of the Tarrant Regional Water District, is the main supervisor over the project. “We got that out of the way. What changed their mind, I don’t know.”

It’s unclear how much money might arrive, or when, and it’s still possible the White House will say no. But Oliver said this week that $50 million would be enough to get engineering plans in place and let the Corps prepare to dig he first section of the channel, once three bridges designed to connect to the island are complete.

Okay, so the Star-Telegram is telling us the Star-Telegram thinks "leaders" have managed to convince White House officials that the bypass channel (ditch) is needed so as to avoid the worst possible flooding scenario. Now, I know the majority of Americans think the majority of those currently in the White House are stupid, but, really, stupid enough to fall for this obvious con job? It really should not take a lot of investigating to figure out Betsy Price was selling some snake oil.

And from the TRWD's Jim Oliver we find out that, oh my, if they get a measly $50 million that would be enough to be able to get the Army Corps preparing to dig that ditch. Once those three bridges designed to connect the Fort Worth mainland to that imaginary island are completed.

Remember, those bridges? Built over dry land, supposedly to save time and money. When there was never any other option other than to do so, as there will be no water under those bridges til the ditch is dug and polluted river water is diverted into the ditch. With construction of those bridges started with a TNT bang way back in October of 2014, with a then astonishing four year construction timeline, now stretched to point in time in the next decade?

And then that ditch can begun to be dug? Didn't we just read in that earlier in the week Star-Telegram article that the project is only nine to 12 months behind?

And Betsy Price, the Star-Telegram, and the other perpetrators of this embarrassment don't think those who dole out federal pork barrel handouts won't figure out this is a scam designed to enrich multiple Fort Worth locals?

Does anyone else remember early on in this scandal when the Grangers had to divest themselves of properties they owned which would benefit from the scheme they were helping hatch? Wasn't it Fort Worth Weekly which reported the details of that early foreshadowing of the scandalous mess to come?

What has happened to Fort Worth Weekly in the ensuing years? That weekly tabloid used to be the closest Fort Worth had to having a real newspaper...

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