Wednesday, June 19, 2013

FDOT estimate on Cortez Bridge job a real lulu

We've known for awhile the ol' Cortez Bridge was heading for some changes.
The Florida Department of Transportation has been making noises about that inevitability off and on for the past 30 years.
High-level fixed span?
Mid-level drawbridge?
Or a major overhaul?
We've heard all that.
What we'd like to know is when does the rubber begin to meet the road on this project?
Uhhh, not so fast, the FDOT said Tuesday in the Manatee County Commission chambers.
They need to "properly assess" the repairs necessary and how much it will cost.
OK, how long should that take?
Better hold onto something.
Three years.
Not three weeks.
Not three months.
Not to actually fix up the bridge.
Just "study" it.
Excuse me, but wasn't it two years ago the FDOT announced a $1.5 million study on the structure's long term future?
And area residents said, hey, you guys have studied this thing long enough, haven't you?
What's more, including that 3-year study, FDOT officials estimate the project -- "We're looking at a rehab option" -- to be an 8-to-10-year job.
For a rehab?
For that amount of time and who knows how many millions, we better be getting something brand spanking new.
Our tax dollars at work, indeed.

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