Central Corridor: monument of failure

The Central Corridor light-rail project is no boon, but a boondoggle.

by Sheldon Gitis

According to The Minnesota Daily Editorial Board, a âÄúsomewhat simplistic cost-benefit analysisâÄù is âÄúcurrently in placeâÄù for the Central Corridor light-rail project. This so-called âÄúsimplisticâÄù analysis involves the computation of some ridiculous amount of regional travel forecast data that, according to Mark Fuhrman, Central Corridor Project Manager, requires a 10 to 12 hour run of the numbers. The Daily editorial also claims that âÄúthe Central Corridor project has the potential to be a boon for the Twin Cities.âÄù The Central Corridor project has already been a very expensive boondoggle for the Twin Cities metro region and the state of Minnesota. During the recent planning for the project, transit fares have increased and service has declined. Meanwhile, new revenue from motor vehicle and county sales taxes âÄî intended to support public transit âÄî has instead been shuffled into the private pockets of political cronies and consultants who are planning to put 265,000 âÄî pound trains designed to travel 70 miles per hour âÄî in the middle of developed city streets. After more than 25 years of planning, the Central Corridor road construction project is still not shovel-ready and not eligible for federal funds. As costs continue to rise while funds remain elusive, the Central Corridor project is more likely to become a monument to Republicratic incompetence than a stimulus for rational development. Sheldon Gitis, University alumnus