Dave Reid

Committee Quickly Approves Road Projects

By - Dec 4th, 2008 09:52 pm
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Although this meeting finished in record time due to Alderman Robert Bauman‘s auctioneer style meetings, there were a couple of items of interest.

First up, was a series of street reconstruction projects that prior to the recent passing of the wheel tax would of included, assessments in thousands of dollars, post card surveys, upset citizens, and would of had a good chance of being deleted.  The majority of these project were immediately approved because the change in the funding mechanism significantly reduced opposition to reconstruction projects.

One road reconstruction project that was held was the proposed reconstruction of S. Howell Avenue.  Alderman Joe Dudzik moved to hold the project to see if the redesign could be done without widening the street and removing trees.  Alderman Bauman supported the motion saying “I agree we do not need to be taking trees, to accommodate bikes.”  They proposed looking into the concept of narrowing the boulevard which would create space for the bike lanes without widening the street.

The Department of Public Works presented a list of projects that would be ready to move forward quickly if a federal stimulus package was passed.  The list included $25 million in sewer projects, $15 million in bridge projects, $10 million in paving projects, and $5 million in proactive street maintenance and sidewalk replacement projects.  Alderman Bauman said, “now is the time to call in that chip, as far as I’m concerned,” indicating that Milwaukee should be in a good position to receive this federal aid because of Mayor Tom Barrett‘s early support of President Elect Barack Obama.

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