The New London Day's new political reporter, Matthew Collette, who succeeds Ted Mann, reports that the Route 11 project appears to be moving toward the front burner.
As a general principle, advocates for sustainability take the position that spending our exceedingly limited funds on building new roads is exactly the wrong route to a sustainable, competitive green economy. Governor Malloy has tended to subscribe to this notion.
In the business world, we talk about "making the business case" for doing project x, y or z. As a parallel, what's the sustainability business case for proceeding with expanding Route 11? Are decision makers use a common set of criteria to make go/no-go decisions on transportation projects? If so, what are they?
Here are some criteria by which we might evaluate projects going forward. Will the project:
- Resolve safety problems?
- Create viable alternatives to driving?
- Reduce VMT (vehicle miles traveled)?
- Reduce greenhouse gas pollution?
- Discourage sprawl?
- Avoid runoff pollution?
- Induce transit-oriented development?
- Create long-term good, green jobs?
- Create some other quantifiable benefit that exceeds that cost?
Transportation for America has a good set of similar performance objectives here. The site at http://www.nycroads.com/roads/CT-11/ makes for interesting reading, discussing the Route 11 Greenway concept that was funded in 2003.
What do you think? What's the sustainability business case for expanding Route 11?