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December 01, 2007


Josh Strupp

"And installing commuter rail as a real choice makes sense across political and ideological lines."

No John, it's still a waste of money politically and ideologically in this case.

As for McInheran, I read his piece a few days ago and found it absolutely ridiculous. The express toolway in which he speaks of in Minneapolis is 394, which connects downtown Minneapolis with the western suburbs. I've driven this stretch of interstate a million times and I have to admit that traffic, especially during rush hour, is horrible. The commute to and from the city can take upwards of an hour either way. The express tollway is definately effective in shaving significant time off your commute if you are willing to pay a premium. That being said, 394 in Minneapolis has absolutely ZERO similiarities with I94 between Chicago and Milwaukee. The stretch of interstate between Chicago and Milwaukee is never congested even during rush hour. I found myself laughing at the comparison and the idea that an express toll road would work considering the rush hour traffic speed on I94 between the 2 cities is about 55 MPH. It would be even faster if the Racine and Kenosha county troopers didn't hover over 94, dishing out citations for speeders every other mile. The amount of attention this stretch of interstate has gotten recently is a waste of time and energy. There are NO problems with I94 between Chicago and Milwaukee and there won't be in the long term scheme of things.


I used the term "hive mind" in this blog entry to describe a certain breed of conservative ideologue that is becoming more and more pervasive (especially online). Josh does NOT fall into that category; rather, he exemplifies the sort of thoughtful conservative - now rare - that actually brings facts to the table rather than catchphrases.

With that said, I believe every year that goes by without commuter rail as a REAL choice in the Madison-Milwaukee-Racine-Chicago corridor is another year of sad decline for us as a viable region in mid-century.

More on that later, of course :)

Josh Strupp

As a side note, the light rail in Minneapolis is very enjoyable to ride and very user friendly. I love riding it. All you choo choo folks would salivate over the thing :) They really did a remarkable job up there (minus the billions in taxpayer dollars it cost to build).

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