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Wabash Tunnel in the news again

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State Auditor Jack Wagner (used to represent the southhills) has written a great take on the need for a bridge to complete the heavy investment that is the Wabash Tunnel. Seems that PennDOT is spending more money for less gain by NOT building the bridge.

http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/06144/692515-109.stm

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State Auditor Jack Wagner (used to represent the southhills) has written a great take on the need for a bridge to complete the heavy investment that is the Wabash Tunnel. Seems that PennDOT is spending more money for less gain by NOT building the bridge.

http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/06144/692515-109.stm

I have to stick the BS flag into that one. Leave it to a suburban politician to misrepresent every statistic that doesn't serve his own needs above all else. The numbers that he gives don't add up to $12 per vehicle even if you only count rush hour traffic. It must be convenient to leave out pertinent information, like what "recent usage" means when it doesn't even agree with the other carefully filtered statistics he manages to recite. Like comparing the whole day's traffic flow of a major highway to just the rush hour flow of an HOV lane. Or stating 1980's era projections for 2015 for a project that was delayed by what, a decade? That's what necessitates a brand new bridge in his mind when existing ones are in need of repair? And he calls himself a fiscal watchdog... So give it until 2025 to carry it's full capacity of cars, I think it will especially when more people move in closer to the city and Downtown instead of far-flung suburbs. At least wait until the Casino bids are settled before proposing to tear one of the sites in half with an on ramp to a bridge headed to... an office building lobby? What is he really thinking, that quoting somebody calling something "stupid" helps prove his point?

Hey I have my own statistics too. An HOV lane has a min. of 2 passengers per car, and an SUV which burns gas at the rate of 2 cars seating an average of 1 driver means that you have to deflate the Ft. Pitt tunnel by 4, and given that it's twice as many lanes by 8, and given that the speed limit is twice as high, by 16. And give us the total number of vehicles entering both, not rush hour for one and total for the other. Now compare. That seems more fair to me.

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Blue, you probably know this but Wagner lives in the city, he ran for mayor against Murphy in '99 (or '98 or something). He was for a long time on Pittsburgh City Council, Council President? He now represents the Southhills as well as the southside so I give you he might have some pressure from the 'burbs but from everything I've seen he isn't one of those "anything to push the city down" legislators. Interesting on the #s I'll have to check those.

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I'm basically suspicious. Where is the proof that the Wabash will really make W. Carson traffic worse, and not better? He seems to have stats for everything else (sarcasm). Maybe it's just a poorly written piece. But why is an auditor proposing new spending when he could better spend his time writing scathing critiques of the Mon Fayette? Where is an honest assesment of what a bridge dumping suburban traffic on that nearly worse possible location to dump traffic Downtown would do? What about the contingency of having to repair the major tunnels which, before the Wabash was built, have cost commuters millions of dollars in lost time? That's the main reason why Pendot pushed the project. What is this talk about a busway? There is no busway directly linked to the Wabash, and if there was, it wouldn't be served any differently by having a new bridge. There is already a PAT tunnel with access to 51. The Wabash, again, was needed as a vital contingency plan when those aging tunnels need major repairs.

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