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Cleveland: Valley View Bridge

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Looks like we are getting some new bridges... or at least bridge replacements.

They are proposing to build a new bridge in between the two existing spans. This will allow, when complete, one span to be closed and be replaced. Once one span is replaced, the other will be removed and replaced. When complete, there will be eight lanes of traffic going in each direction

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When I heard Kasich had a major transportation announcement I thought could it be we are finally getting more state money for public transportation?  Of course that would be ridiculous. [emoji849]

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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So - 16 lanes in the center - with the original 1975 bridges being removed? They are not in poor condition, with 84% sufficiency ratings.

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^ I don't think that's quite true. What they'll be doing is a replacement of the existing decks and miscellaneous steel and pier repairs. My understanding is that the final condition will be 6 lanes in each direction. 4 on the existing bridges and two in each direction on the center structure.

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^ I don't think that's quite true. What they'll be doing is a replacement of the existing decks and miscellaneous steel and pier repairs. My understanding is that the final condition will be 6 lanes in each direction. 4 on the existing bridges and two in each direction on the center structure.

 

Now that I can believe. Besides, there's no room in the middle for a 16-lane bridge. The space between the two bridges looks like about as wide as the two existing bridges.

 

Of course, I'm not sure why we're building these bridges in the first place. I'd love to see a tax-gap analysis of this project, and if it would be more cost-effective to build Lorain-Aurora commuter rail instead.


"Save the planet. Move to the city." -- The Downtowner podcast

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Unless ODOT Director Jerry Wray misspoke (or I misheard), he specifically said during the press conference that there would be eight lanes in each direction when the project is complete. I admit I may have misheard... but I did hear 8 lanes for sure.

 

 

As this sounds ridiculous, I will admit to being wrong  :)

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ODOT district 12 headquarters is out in Garfield Heights, 0.5 miles from this bridge. I'm guessing this $281 Million Dollar project is a project for themselves, out there in the sprawl. I'd call for ODOT to either officially rename themselves Ohio Department of Highways, or relocate to downtown Cleveland and live on a daily basis that there is life outside of the sprawl, and they should focus on effective solutions of all-of-the-above, and not just endless highway projects serving the sprawl.

 

If you can't resurface the bridge because of too much traffic, what-if, you added open-road-tolling to the Valley View Bridge (to pay for the $281M project), and charge $0.50 each time you crossed, I'd imagine your 160k daily traffic would magically decrease, and you won't need to build a temp-bridge. If not, then at the tolls would pay for the bridge in 9.6 years.

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So $281 million for extra lanes that may be needed only four hours each day? So we're using supply to regulate demand without the influence of price? Hardly a free-market solution. Reminds me of this paragraph:

 

http://ops.fhwa.dot.gov/publications/fhwahop08039/cp_prim1_02.htm

 

At its most fundamental level, highway congestion is caused by the lack of a mechanism to efficiently manage use of capacity. When searching for a solution to the congestion problem, most people immediately think of adding a new lane to an overburdened highway. Construction costs for adding lanes in urban areas average $10–$15 million per lane mile.2 In general, the funding for this type of construction comes from taxes that drivers pay when buying gas for their vehicles. Overall, funds generated from gas taxes on an added lane during rush hours amount to only $60,000 a year (based on 10,000 vehicles per day during rush hours, paying fuel taxes amounting to about 2 cents per mile). This amount is grossly insufficient to pay for the lane addition.


"Save the planet. Move to the city." -- The Downtowner podcast

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ODOT district 12 headquarters is out in Garfield Heights, 0.5 miles from this bridge. I'm guessing this $281 Million Dollar project is a project for themselves, out there in the sprawl. I'd call for ODOT to either officially rename themselves Ohio Department of Highways, or relocate to downtown Cleveland and live on a daily basis that there is life outside of the sprawl, and they should focus on effective solutions of all-of-the-above, and not just endless highway..

 

Valley View/Garfield is "out there in the sprawl?" Huh? This ain't Avon.... It's barely 8 driving miles from Public Square.. -- as close or closer driving distance than UO-beloved Lakewood, Waterloo Rd, etc..

 

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How would the extra center lanes connect to the rest of the freeway on either "end?"  You can widen the bridge, but traffic will still have to funnel into fewer lanes on each end of the Valley View Bridge (example: poorly designed southern end of the I-271 express lanes).  Will the lanes be express lanes continuing from Garfield Hts to Brooklyn Hts in the existing median with no access to I-77, or is it just the bridge that is to be widened?

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^ I don't think that's quite true. What they'll be doing is a replacement of the existing decks and miscellaneous steel and pier repairs. My understanding is that the final condition will be 6 lanes in each direction. 4 on the existing bridges and two in each direction on the center structure.

 

Now that I can believe. Besides, there's no room in the middle for a 16-lane bridge. The space between the two bridges looks like about as wide as the two existing bridges.

 

Of course, I'm not sure why we're building these bridges in the first place. I'd love to see a tax-gap analysis of this project, and if it would be more cost-effective to build Lorain-Aurora commuter rail instead.

 

Just a question.  How would the Lorain - Aurora commuter rail take over significant functionality from I-480, which serves people going in many directions when accessing and egressing, and includes actual through traffic (eg. Chicago - Buffalo) ?  What do you see as the trip generators, what would its route be, and where would the stops be?  What sorts of connecting services would be available?

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How would the extra center lanes connect to the rest of the freeway on either "end?"  You can widen the bridge, but traffic will still have to funnel into fewer lanes on each end of the Valley View Bridge (example: poorly designed southern end of the I-271 express lanes).  Will the lanes be express lanes continuing from Garfield Hts to Brooklyn Hts in the existing median with no access to I-77, or is it just the bridge that is to be widened?

 

Now that's an intriguing thought.

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Just a question.  How would the Lorain - Aurora commuter rail take over significant functionality from I-480, which serves people going in many directions when accessing and egressing, and includes actual through traffic (eg. Chicago - Buffalo) ?  What do you see as the trip generators, what would its route be, and where would the stops be?  What sorts of connecting services would be available?

 

Most trips are highly localized. Anywhere from 1-3 percent of car trips on an urban interstate involve intercity travel. The average commute distance in Greater Cleveland is 7.8 miles. The downtown CBD accounts for about 15 percent of the metro area's employment. But when commuter rail is provided, the downtown CBD's share of regional employment increases (as do other employment districts along the rail corridor). As with parking, we typically provide enough pavement to accommodate the maximum number of cars at peak travel times -- 7-9 a.m. and 4-6 p.m. Commuter rail can reduce the pressure for adding a highway lane in each direction during those peak travel times -- as can congestion pricing. Implement both, and the result is a far more fluid highway corridor without adding more lanes that aren't needed for 20 hours a day.


"Save the planet. Move to the city." -- The Downtowner podcast

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Considering the bridge carries 146,000 vehicles per day and is approaching its design limits of 147,000 VPD for 2038, the extra lanes would be a relief. Part of the issue is the 3% grade eastbound and the center lane merge for I-77 to I-480 traffic - those ramps I think are around 4% or 5%? The planning doc that Mr Sparkle[/member] shared did not indicate that, I think. Traffic, especially trucks, considerably slow down for those reasons. At this time, 8 hours per day is considered rush and congested for that bridge.

 

It looks like ODOT considered adding express lanes into the median as part of this project as entirely separate structures, but that idea was nixed as too expensive. The original plans for I-480 from 1967 called for express lanes, but it looks like it was only constructed with an extra wide median for such a configuration from I-77 to the proposed Bedford Freeway (OH 14/Broadway), and along I-271 south to I-480 (and along I-90 east to OH 44/Chardon). The project is essentially a minor expansion and is ALT 5:

 

Alternative 5 – New Bridge in Median

 

The alternative would build a new four lane bridge in the median and maintain four lanes of traffic in each direction with minimal disruption. The new bridge would replace the existing westbound bridge.

 

Bridge Construction - Construct the new 72 feet wide toe/toe parapets westbound bridge in the median while traffic remains in the normal locations on the existing bridges. Eastbound traffic would temporarily be moved to the new westbound bridge. Replace the deck on the eastbound bridge in two years with no traffic on the bridge under construction. The proposed eastbound toe/toe parapets width would be 72 feet. Traffic would be moved to the final locations and the existing westbound bridge superstructure and substructure completely demolished.

 

Construction Duration – Three years is the time estimated to construct the new westbound bridge in the median. Traffic on IR 480 would not be affected by this construction activity. An additional two years would be needed to complete the construction of the new deck on the eastbound bridge. The project construction duration is 5 years.

 

User Delays During Construction – There would be minimal disruption to traffic during construction. No lanes would be eliminated. Lanes would remain 12 feet wide. The disruption would be overnight changes of alignment from one bridge to another. Short term ramp closures from Transportation Boulevard and to the IR 77 ramps will be required to provide new pavement tie-in to the revised bridge alignment.

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Why is traffic growing when the population and economy aren't? That's counter-intuitive, with a bloated, sprawling region and roadway network places unnecessary costs on taxpayers and the private sector. This $281 million (and other capacity-enhancing road projects) isn't a wise decision. It's mindless, inertia-based spending. We act like we have no control over the fate of these projects and our economy, because we're making transportation/land-use investment decisions based on past trends, rather on what we want this region to be.


"Save the planet. Move to the city." -- The Downtowner podcast

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Population has been growing - just not in Cleveland. Areas that I-480 serves grew proportionate to traffic, and in general, to the rise of automobile travel. I-480, coupled with I-271, serves as an effective bypass of Cleveland. Are you still questioning why traffic is growing?

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Population has been growing - just not in Cleveland.

 

Where? Cuyahoga County has lost 500,000 people since I-480 was built.


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You are misleading my comment. The population of every city but Cleveland has been growing (perhaps not in the last decade as some suburbs have maxed out developable land). I'm not going to post population numbers, but cities like Parma, Maple Heights, and other suburbs boomed before and during construction of I-480, and have more recently peaked as the region matures. During that time, newer suburbs further south, west, and east have grown - and are still growing, all utilizing I-480 to get to job centers in Cleveland and in the suburbs - that I-480 connects to. Just because Cleveland has declined in population and importance does not mean the county and region has declined. You can blame the interstate, but I'm going to point fingers at NAFTA, deindustrialization, Hough riots, tax incentives in other cities, counties, and states, crime rates, corruption...

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Why is traffic growing when the population and economy aren't? That's counter-intuitive, with a bloated, sprawling region and roadway network places unnecessary costs on taxpayers and the private sector. This $281 million (and other capacity-enhancing road projects) isn't a wise decision. It's mindless, inertia-based spending. We act like we have no control over the fate of these projects and our economy, because we're making transportation/land-use investment decisions based on past trends, rather on what we want this region to be.

 

Traffic is growing because jobs are moving to the Beachwood and Independence areas, as well as the 91 corridor parallel to 271.  These areas all have light population relative to jobs, receive minimal transit service, and are accessible primarily via interstate.

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The population of every city but Cleveland has been growing

 

Can you provide some numbers of the population growth of cities along I-480 (which BTW was built on the Cleveland side of city boundaries which meant Cleveland had to pay 5% of the cost of building a freeway that helped exacerbate its decline) in the past decade? And since 1975-88 when the road was built? I think you will find that most Cuyahoga County cities along I-480 have seen their population decline since then.

 

Traffic is growing because jobs are moving to the Beachwood and Independence areas, as well as the 91 corridor parallel to 271.  These areas all have light population relative to jobs, receive minimal transit service, and are accessible primarily via interstate.

 

Yes, my question was rhetorical. The problem is understood and this investment continues to worsen the problem. This region lacks the cohesion, leadership and courage to chart its own course. Projects like this show the region (and Ohio) is still running on an inertia established in the last century.


"Save the planet. Move to the city." -- The Downtowner podcast

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No, Cleveland did not have to pay 5% (and I have found no citation to support that, either). The Federal-Aid Highway Act of 1956 mandated the federal government fund (via the Highway Trust Fund) 90% of IR projects with the state picking up the other 10%.

 

I-480's completion dates:

* Turnpike east to W130: 1980

* W130 to Ridge: 1985

* Ridge to Brookpark: 1986

* Brookpark to SR 14/Bedford Freeway (unbuilt): 1977

* SR 14 to I-480N (unnumbered): 1971

* I-480N: 1974

* I-480 to SR 17: 1971

* SR 17 at Bartlett to I-271: 1965

 

So let's look at:

* Bedford Heights

* Maple Heights

* Garfield Heights

* North Olmstead

* Parma

 

(## denotes approx. era when I-480 was completed in the area)

 

BEDFORD HGTS

1960 5,275 —

1970 13,063 147.6% ##

1980 13,214 1.2%

1990 12,131 −8.2%

2000 11,375 −6.2%

2010 10,751 −5.5%

 

MAPLE HGTS

1960 31,667 103.2% ##

1970 34,093 7.7% ##

1980 29,465 −13.6%

1990 27,089 −8.1%

2000 26,156 −3.4%

2010 23,138 −11.5%

 

GARFIELD HGTS

1960 38,455 77.5%

1970 41,417 7.7% ##

1980 34,938 −15.6% ##

1990 31,739 −9.2%

2000 30,734 −3.2%

2010 28,849 −6.1%

 

NORTH OLMSTED

1960 16,290 146.7%

1970 34,861 114.0% ##

1980 36,480 4.6% ##

1990 34,204 −6.2%

2000 34,113 −0.3%

2010 32,718 −4.1%

 

PARMA

1960 82,845 186.7%

1970 100,216 21.0% ##

1980 92,548 −7.7% ##

1990 87,876 −5.0%

2000 85,655 −2.5%

2010 81,601 −4.7%

 

With the exception of Maple Heights, most of these declines can be attributed to natural causes (death rates exceeding birth rates and the loss of some initial industry). Many suburbs that are celebrated on here, like Lakewood, experience this. But if we expand the scope of areas I-480 serves, like Independence...

 

INDEPENDENCE

1960 6,568 111.5%

1970 7,034 7.1% ##

1980 6,607 −6.1% ##

1990 6,500 −1.6%

2000 7,109 9.4%

2010 7,133 0.3%

 

SEVEN HILLS

1960 5,708 322.8%

1970 12,700 122.5% ##

1980 13,650 7.5% ##

1990 12,339 −9.6%

2000 12,080 −2.1%

2010 11,804 −2.3%

 

BROOK PARK

1960 12,856 393.3%

1970 30,774 139.4% ## (Can you guess what was built during this time? It's large and has been in decline for some 15 years.)

1980 26,195 −14.9% ##

1990 22,865 −12.7%

2000 21,218 −7.2%

2010 19,212 −9.5%

 

WESTLAKE

1960 12,906 162.7%

1970 15,689 21.6%

1980 19,475 24.1% ##

1990 27,018 38.7%

2000 31,719 17.4%

2010 32,729 3.2%

 

All of these regions have been influenced by I-480 (Westlake, by I-90, too). Not all have declined but it's certainly reached peak population for many suburbs as developable land has been expended. You no longer have vast swaths of undeveloped land left, but come cities that have done well with good government and proactive planning, like Independence, continue to shine.

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Cleveland needs an outerbelt regardless of anyone's views on urbanization.  Cities with outerbelts (i.e. all large ones) can approach regionalism and planning any way they want to.  We've done a particularly bad job of it here and we can't blame the 480 bridge for that.  We need the 480 bridge AND we need to do a better job of regional planning.

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Population figures were exactly what I expected.

 

No, Cleveland did not have to pay 5% (and I have found no citation to support that, either).

 

Can you refresh my memory on the substance of Cleveland's argument in its lawsuit against ODOT 25 years ago for intentionally placing I-480 inside its borders?


"Save the planet. Move to the city." -- The Downtowner podcast

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Along a disused industrial corridor? Even in aerials dating back to the 1950's, that land along the tracks was not heavily utilized in comparison to the south side in Parma. There was a considerable number of vacant properties. I'm doing a newspaper archive search but I'm not finding anything of substance other than generic eminent domain arguments when it was proposed as I-271.

 

If anything, the argument supports the position that the outerbelt is doing exactly as it was designed to. When it was proposed, I-271 did not exist west of I-71 and the Bedford Freeway and I-480 east of Bedford Freeway was proposed as I-80N. There would have been no true bypass if I-480 had not been fully realized to the Turnpike. Additionally, all but I-271 on the far east side of the metro was built out or being built out rapidly; the industrial corridor near Parma for I-480 was the best alternative. This was essentially detailed as Outer Belt South in the 1944 proposal for Cleveland freeways and the initial 1955 "yellow book" of interstate routes by the United States Bureau of Public Roads.

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No, Cleveland did not have to pay 5% (and I have found no citation to support that, either). The Federal-Aid Highway Act of 1956 mandated the federal government fund (via the Highway Trust Fund) 90% of IR projects with the state picking up the other 10%.

 

I-480's completion dates:

* Turnpike east to W130: 1980

* W130 to Ridge: 1985

* Ridge to Brookpark: 1986

* Brookpark to SR 14/Bedford Freeway (unbuilt): 1977

* SR 14 to I-480N (unnumbered): 1971

* I-480N: 1974

* I-480 to SR 17: 1971

* SR 17 at Bartlett to I-271: 1965

 

So let's look at:

* Bedford Heights

* Maple Heights

* Garfield Heights

* North Olmstead

* Parma

 

(## denotes approx. era when I-480 was completed in the area)

 

BEDFORD HGTS

1960 5,275 —

1970 13,063 147.6% ##

1980 13,214 1.2%

1990 12,131 −8.2%

2000 11,375 −6.2%

2010 10,751 −5.5%

 

MAPLE HGTS

1960 31,667 103.2% ##

1970 34,093 7.7% ##

1980 29,465 −13.6%

1990 27,089 −8.1%

2000 26,156 −3.4%

2010 23,138 −11.5%

 

GARFIELD HGTS

1960 38,455 77.5%

1970 41,417 7.7% ##

1980 34,938 −15.6% ##

1990 31,739 −9.2%

2000 30,734 −3.2%

2010 28,849 −6.1%

 

NORTH OLMSTED

1960 16,290 146.7%

1970 34,861 114.0% ##

1980 36,480 4.6% ##

1990 34,204 −6.2%

2000 34,113 −0.3%

2010 32,718 −4.1%

 

PARMA

1960 82,845 186.7%

1970 100,216 21.0% ##

1980 92,548 −7.7% ##

1990 87,876 −5.0%

2000 85,655 −2.5%

2010 81,601 −4.7%

 

With the exception of Maple Heights, most of these declines can be attributed to natural causes (death rates exceeding birth rates and the loss of some initial industry). Many suburbs that are celebrated on here, like Lakewood, experience this. But if we expand the scope of areas I-480 serves, like Independence...

 

INDEPENDENCE

1960 6,568 111.5%

1970 7,034 7.1% ##

1980 6,607 −6.1% ##

1990 6,500 −1.6%

2000 7,109 9.4%

2010 7,133 0.3%

 

SEVEN HILLS

1960 5,708 322.8%

1970 12,700 122.5% ##

1980 13,650 7.5% ##

1990 12,339 −9.6%

2000 12,080 −2.1%

2010 11,804 −2.3%

 

BROOK PARK

1960 12,856 393.3%

1970 30,774 139.4% ## (Can you guess what was built during this time? It's large and has been in decline for some 15 years.)

1980 26,195 −14.9% ##

1990 22,865 −12.7%

2000 21,218 −7.2%

2010 19,212 −9.5%

 

WESTLAKE

1960 12,906 162.7%

1970 15,689 21.6%

1980 19,475 24.1% ##

1990 27,018 38.7%

2000 31,719 17.4%

2010 32,729 3.2%

 

All of these regions have been influenced by I-480 (Westlake, by I-90, too). Not all have declined but it's certainly reached peak population for many suburbs as developable land has been expended. You no longer have vast swaths of undeveloped land left, but come cities that have done well with good government and proactive planning, like Independence, continue to shine.

 

Lol all but one of those communities has basically been experiencing population loss since the 80s, and you're using it to claim that there is population growth fueling traffic and sprawl along the freeway?

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Can you properly quote? lol

 

Should I expand to areas I-480 serves? Because I can list out many more municipalities that utilize I-480. These areas notably began declining years after the highway was completed, so your snark is off-base - again.

 

NORTH RIDGEVILLE

1980 21,237 61.5% ##

1990 21,564 1.5%

2000 22,338 3.6%

2010 29,465 31.9%

 

OLMSTED FALLS

1960 2,144 88.6%

1970 2,504 16.8%

1980 5,868 134.3% ##

1990 6,741 14.9%

2000 7,962 18.1%

2010 9,024 13.3%

 

BEREA

1960 16,592 37.7%

1970 22,396 35.0% ##

1980 19,636 −12.3% ## (Can you guess why Berea's population staginated? It's a four letter word.)

1990 19,051 −3.0%

2000 18,970 −0.4%

2010 19,093 0.6%

 

MIDDLEBURG HGTS

1960 7,282 120.7%

1970 12,367 69.8%

1980 16,228 31.2% ##

1990 14,702 −9.4%

2000 15,542 5.7%

2010 15,946 2.6%

 

SOLON

1960 6,333 146.4%

1970 11,519 81.9%

1980 13,950 21.1% ##

1990 18,548 33.0%

2000 21,802 17.5%

2010 23,348 7.1%

 

When you have a center (Cleveland/Cuyhoga County) that has been deindustrialized and is no longer the hub of employment, then you have a radius effect that will affect cities all around it. The interstate was a factor in this, but so were the other issues that I listed above. Think race riots played a part in Cleveland's decline? Or crime? Or corruption? What about NAFTA?

 

 

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Only the population data starting in 1980 is relevant. The first section of I-480 west of I-271 opened in 1975. The last, west of Brooklyn Heights to West 150th, opened in 1988.

 

I-480 doesn't serve Solon. US 422 does. One can argue that clean-n-green open land near established urban areas was the reason for the few examples of population growth, not I-480. Ohio's institutionalized urban policy takes resources from established urban areas and gives them to the undeveloped urban fringe which drags the urban doughnut hole ever-wider, then throws cosmetic levels of social welfare funding to help those left behind. So the I-480 bridge is more about making the lives easier for those who are riding the state's sprawl wave farther out, while the GCRTA is forced to make do with less as its taxbase shrinks.

 

Ironically, the cost of the I-480 bridge is identical to GCRTA's unfunded cost of replacing its aging railcar fleet.


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I-480 does not serve Salon, but it serves it indirectly. Do we need to go down this route of where demand for highways come from? People in Solon, where there are many businesses and factories, is growing as a result of I-480. Do you think they are locating on US 422, which essentially peters out into a two-lane minor arterial to the east? Or because they are located near the apex of two major interstates?

 

I'm not arguing with you about funding or social welfare and all that because I agree with you on those points. But it's fruitless to damn highways. I have advocated for outerbelts and feeder freeways in an attempt to remove inner-city freeways where feasible - but we don't live in a perfect world.

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^Of course Kasich, the governor who could care less about transit or Cleveland, for that matter, had to run up to get his photo-op making the "repair" funding announcement with the gigantic bridges over his shoulder in the background; quite naturally not explaining that this expensive funding for 480's VVB is more for long term maintenance repair work and not of the emergency nature ghat was needed to literally save the Inner Belt bridge. Meanwhile it was reported last week that RTA, the state's (by far) largest transit agency, will suffer a "catastrophic loss" in funding next year by RTA's losing its ability to collect sales and use taxes from Medicaid managed care organizations.  And yet, in the nearly week since this dire news was reported, not one local or state pol, especially Kasich of course, has uttered a peep about this...

 

What a joke.

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I'm not arguing with you about funding or social welfare and all that because I agree with you on those points. But it's fruitless to damn highways. I have advocated for outerbelts and feeder freeways in an attempt to remove inner-city freeways where feasible - but we don't live in a perfect world.

 

Doesn't mean we shouldn't strive for it and enjoy each success along the way. I don't even see a consensus of what "perfect" means let alone serious efforts to get there. It's so frustrating to see your transit system decaying away with trains being scrapped due to their excessive age, and a big systemwide service cut this year and another that's six times worse due next year. Meanwhile we build a superfluous bridge whose purpose is to, during reconstruction of the other two bridges, save a few minutes in the lives of people of means. Ironic about the time savings. Yet we have no problem or even an awareness of how much less convenient we're making transit by wanting to route buses around Public Square and adding several minutes to each bus trip -- and tell RTA to pay the cost of making its own services less convenient. OK, I'm done ranting. Carry on Cuyahoga County and the rest of Ohio as you have for decades, even though it has produced only stagnation.


"Save the planet. Move to the city." -- The Downtowner podcast

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I agree there's some elitism behind the Public Square issue, but 480?  Everybody uses that including buses.  It's not either/or.

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I agree there's some elitism behind the Public Square issue, but 480?  Everybody uses that including buses.  It's not either/or.

 

One RTA bus route uses it (90F), a route that use to take Broadway from downtown to Bedford but now takes 77/480, leaving long sections of Broadway without bus service.

 

It is an either/or when you fund a non-essential bridge project while essential public transportation is disappearing at rate higher in Cleveland than in any other large metro area. Some of us will avoid having to endure some highway traffic congestion during the reconstruction of two highway bridges. That's a nice luxury. Meanwhile thousands of us have lost transit service to jobs, education and health care in the past decade. More of us lost service this year. And the service cuts next year will be six times worse than this year's.

 

These aren't unavoidable outcomes over which we have no control. We chose this transportation/land-use future. It's never too late to choose another.


"Save the planet. Move to the city." -- The Downtowner podcast

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But the Valley View bridge is not an emergency repair. I grant you, Cleveland and the country have serious infrastructure issues, especially our highway system that I don't take lightly (if I-480 collapses in Valley View the way the W-35 went down in Minneapolis, there would have been many times more casualties). But 480 is not anywhere near that point; our trsnsit system is; and maybe even worse, but nobody in powere really seems to care... and, oh yeah, let's not even get into the goo-gobbs we're spending on the super superfluous Opportunity Corridor highway.

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Buses can use the Opportunity Corridor as too, and they probably will. 

 

On the one hand, we're talking about how feasible it would be to keep Superior closed through the square, even though RTA has already opposed that.  On the other hand, we haven't seriously considered any additional local funding like a hike in the parking tax.  I just have a hard time blaming 480 or any other road for the transit funding situation.

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It's not a matter of blaming a particular highway from taking funds away from transit, it's about blaming our leaders for their priorities, especially in starving transit literally to near the brink of its death.

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Is it just coincidental that this project is being started as the innerbelt project is being completed? All of the equipment, trailers, machinery, etc. just need picked up and moved a few miles or so. Logistically, it should be an easy transition.

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