Skip to comments.Businesses, cities laud grant approval for I-49 project
Posted on 12/22/2018 10:59:56 PM PST by Tolerance Sucks Rocks
PINEVILLE, Mo. Gregg Sweeten had difficulty last week putting his reaction into words.
When he learned that funding for the long-sought Bella Vista Bypass had been found, Sweeten, the Pineville mayor and McDonald County emergency manager, was stunned. Then he was elated.
"That is amazing," Sweeten said. "That is going to be so great. I think its going to lead to all kinds of opportunities not only for Pineville but for McDonald County. I mean, its just I just cant say how happy I am. Wow. That is ... thats wild. Thats amazing. Thats a Christmas present right there."
Late week, members of Congress from Arkansas and Missouri announced that the U.S. Department of Transportation had approved a grant request for $25 million to fund work needed to complete Missouri's 5-mile share of the bypass, now known as Interstate 49 Missouri-Arkansas Connector. Coupled with more than $23 million in state and federal money the Missouri Department of Transportation has already earmarked for the work, the grant will cover the entire cost of Missouri's piece of the bypass. Missouri highway officials had already done design and engineering work and acquired rights of way.
A spokesperson with the Missouri Department of Transportation said it is not yet known when work could begin or how long it might take.
The proposed bypass would head straight south of Pineville, swing west of the developed corridor along the state line and west of Bella Vista, before turning east to meet with I-49 near Bentonville, Arkansas.
When done, the bypass would mean nearly 300 miles of I-49 are complete from Kansas City (Interstate 70) to Fort Smith, Arkansas (Interstate 40.)
(Excerpt) Read more at joplinglobe.com ...
Good news, Ive driven that route and it can become very congested, the bypass is much needed.
So to avoid today's congested corridor, they are planning a replacement congested corridor a little to the west. OK -- but if they don't want to simply replicate their current problems, they need to think seriously about long-term management of growth along the new route. The optimistic statements in the article from city officials and business owners along today's Highway 71 are laughable given our now-70 years of history with interstate bypasses. Once the new road is built, all new businesses of any size will locate along the new road. The old commercial corridor and old downtowns don't wither and die overnight, but in 30 years, if it's not carefully planned, a new strip city will sprawl along the interstate and the older areas will be hollowed out.
As close as I've been to that area is the Pea Ridge battlefield. That area is open prairie. Bentonville sprawl is starting to appear on the viewshed. At least this new road will pull the development west. Whether there's anything over that direction worth preserving, I don't know.
Thanks Tol, and great to see. They’ve got one more piece to go, though, in Arkansas (at least 100 miles). If we’re lucky, we might live long enough to see that completed!
NW Arkansas along 71 / 49 is a blight. A spreading cancer that does not have any boundaries or plan. Need an airport? Find a flat spot and build one with pig trail access. Never mind that you have urban blighted 5 or 10 miles of what was once quiet countryside along the way. This is not quaint New England. It is Houston with hills and unrestricted unzoned shameless commercialization. The competing towns from Fayetviille to Neosho successively lower standards to get the next dollar available. Only snippets of National Forest block the maze of urbanization. There is no one place for homes and city and one place for countryside and farms just a shotgun effect mess. The city dwellers at first like the idea of being amongst scattered cow pastures until they find out they smell then they want them banned.
I hate the cancer that is NW Arkansas. It all began after Sam Walton died and the wraps came off of his unspoken rule to not flaunt your wealth. Then came Tyson and Hunt truck lines etc. The last turd in the punch bowl came when walmart required their vendors to have a corporate presence in the Bentonville area then the yankees came and it will never ever be the same quaint quiet area again.
Little towns like Ginger Blue, Gravette, Sulphur Springs and Noel have become meth stops. The bypass on 49 will provide an easy pathway for the urban blight to spread.
What a shame. There has been enough billions or trillions pass through the walmart empire to have made the area tastefully spectacular. Instead it is as cheap and gaudy as walmart and as trashy as the people of walmart and it only took about 30 years to make the mess that will spread from where it is.
Taking a minute to adjust my flame-retardant clothing here. Aaaaah, there we go!
If they had built the bypass with toll bonds, then at least some of the businesses would stay along US 71, since fewer trucks and cars would use the bypass, thus containing the sprawl. No zoning impositions necessary, except to get rid of ridiculous umpteen-acres-per-household requirements.
I’ve come to be of the opinion that when a major project is done on a stretch of interstate, such as widening the road or rehabilitating it from the ground up, the projects should be paid for at least in part with tolls. Minor improvements such as repaving, tweaking interchanges, or replacing guardrails or median barriers, would not count. As sphinx has implied, people in established neighborhoods will naturally resent such major projects being done so that long distance commuters can freely whiz hither and yon through the neighborhoods. If a price is imposed, not as many people will be likely to long-distance commute, plus it is user-pays to use these quality routes.
Non-free roads would also help contain sprawl, as people would be more likely to live closer in to job centers.
Please see #7.
If they had been doing the widening of I-49 in NW Arkansas with toll bonds instead of the half-penny sales tax, I believe that the sprawl would not be as quick to take root. Professionals, when faced with either dozens of stoplights or tolls on their preferred long-distance routes, would choose to live closer to work or even telecommute (work out of the home).
Yes, I know I’m talking about altering behavior, but I’m not proposing to “get people out of their cars” and cram them onto buses and trains, for easier surveillance by liberal fascists. I’m just talking about a price to pay for long-distance commuting and other travel patterns that create a strain on older established neighborhoods, as sphinx has pointed out numerous times on FR.
If there is any zoning in NW AR preventing dense developments or mixed-use development, they should get rid of it, so that people have the FREEDOM to create such developments (rather than being forced to by other oppressive zoning laws).
Well, we disagree on that.
Anarchy is not something most civilized people desire.
Have a nice day.
Thanks for the ping.
I’m with you on zoning laws. Let people build as suits them. The problem with zoning, or any, law is that once a law is passed then bureaucracies are appointed to oversee them.
Those bureaucrats then propose more laws and regulations to ensure their job safety. That one law soon looks like a spider web of laws and regulations.
Look at how hard it is to do renovations to the house you think you own in California or some other places. Unintended consequences.
As far as tolls, if tolls are kept at a reasonable rate (yeah I know hahaha) most truckers don’t mind paying them for the time and safety aspects.
To see how NOT to do a toll road see the eastern toll bypass around Denver. Way out in the country and rarely traveled because the tolls are so high. The one time I used it I think I was stopping every ten miles to pay a toll. Can’t remember the actual cost but it was high enough that I never used it again preferring to battle the congestion and ignorance of Denver.
The E-470 costs at least $1.75 at each toll gantry for a car. Multiply that by 4 or so for a truck, would be my guess.
That sounds about right. Don’t recall what the total was but it shocked me at the time.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.