Monday, February 16, 2009

WisDOT: Local Governments Will Spend Stimulus Funds On Biggest Roads

The Wisconsin Department of Transportation has posted the hurry-up rules and procedures for first-phase stimulus funding applications, and "Collector or higher" roads - - the biggest we've got - - get the priority under urban projects, says the website.

More information here.

In the classification jargon of federally-funded road systems, arterial and collector are higher-level, higher-capacity than are local.

This isn't arcane: the feds explain it simply here.

And, of course, transit planning and funding always is at the back of the transportation system bus.

That leaves out your local neighborhood or commercial-strip streets, sidewalks, bikepaths and other modalities that need investment, and that are good for cities and clean air because they de-emphasize petroleum burn.

Who wins in this funding decision announced by WisDOT? (Read WisDOT Secretary's Frank Busalacchi's funding application letter and proposal requirements here.)

The politically-connected road-building contractors, and the suburban and exurban constituencies they serve.

Final question: Does the Milwaukee delegation plan to speak up? Does it have a pulse?

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