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I-49 Lafayette Connector/I-49 South Update (The Sequel)

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Anthony_JK:
Update:

I discovered an earlier article documenting Ann Burruss' attempt to use "civil rights" investigations to kill the Connector project (via the Acadiana Advocate):

https://www.theadvocate.com/acadiana/news/i-49-lafayette-connector-investigated-over-racial-divide/article_e147add2-a963-11ed-938c-d76089ab94f6.html

The original letter from Ann Burruss to USDOT Secretary Pete Buttigieg was dated January 26th; and the announcement by FHWA of the investigation was posted on February 16th.

Turns out that Ms. Burruss' husband is none other than Michael Waldon, one of the most fervent and vehement opponents of the Connector project who was behind the original lawsuit to kill the 2003 Record of Decision, and who has invented many sham arguments to kill the project and promote his prefered Teche Ridge bypass.

Just as I expected: a Hail Mary attempt to exploit "civil rights" to smear this project.

BTW: The DOTD Secretary, Shawn Wilson, happens to not only be Black, but a UL/USL graduate.  But, just plain "racism", right?



[Edited to correct the link to the actual article]

Plutonic Panda:
Nothing but a typical joker trying to stop a much needed infrastructure project. Plenty of those to go around. Iíll look forward to the day I can drive this beautiful road and listen to some good tunes not even thinking about all of those who love to block progress.

Anthony_JK:
Just dropped this comment to the Acadiana Advocate's comment section re: the Connector article:



--- Quote ---So sorry, but this seems like yet another Hail Mary attempt by the most fervent opponents of this project to exploit the "race card" in order to kill this project. The rationale that Mrs. Burruss uses by quoting the original construction of the Evangeline Thruway in the 1960's as "racist" is absolutely daffy. Was it really racism that determined the original location of the Thruway, or was it the need for a direct north-south thoroughfare that could service both the abutting neighborhoods and downtown Lafayette, as well as serve access to USL/UL and the Lafayette Regional Airport? Would Mrs. Burruss or Mr. Waldon prefer the Thruway be build closer to where Ambassador Caffrey Parkway is today? Or, right over Cypress Swamp? Or, like their preferred Teche Ridge Bypass non-alternative, near Breaux Bridge or St. Martinville?

Secondly, there is no "racial division" with the Connector project. The chosen alignment of the freeway is between two neighborhoods in its northern section or well within its own right-of-way, with direct and continuous access between Sterling Grove and the Ballard Addition/Laplace neighborhoods. The elevated viaduct will allow for full and continuous connectivity between the neighborhoods, and the improvements to the existing Thruway, combined with Complete Streets implementation of green space and walkability and bikeability, will directly enhance and improve the development of the neighborhoods. Not to mention, the removal of the real and actual division that hurts the corridor: the bumper-to-bumper traffic that has turned it into a virtual free fire zone for pedestrians, bikers, and drivers alike. No bypass alternative can provide such benefits without significant other impacts (wetland invasion in the case of Teche Ridge; excessive costs for a western bypass beyond even that of the Connector).

Instead of continuing these stall tactics and parlor tricks, why not just help build the Connector and make it the best it can be for Lafayette and everyone else who will use it?

--- End quote ---

rte66man:

--- Quote from: Anthony_JK on March 02, 2023, 06:46:10 AM ---Just dropped this comment to the Acadiana Advocate's comment section re: the Connector article:


--- Quote ---So sorry, but this seems like yet another Hail Mary attempt by the most fervent opponents of this project to exploit the "race card" in order to kill this project. The rationale that Mrs. Burruss uses by quoting the original construction of the Evangeline Thruway in the 1960's as "racist" is absolutely daffy. Was it really racism that determined the original location of the Thruway, or was it the need for a direct north-south thoroughfare that could service both the abutting neighborhoods and downtown Lafayette, as well as serve access to USL/UL and the Lafayette Regional Airport? Would Mrs. Burruss or Mr. Waldon prefer the Thruway be build closer to where Ambassador Caffrey Parkway is today? Or, right over Cypress Swamp? Or, like their preferred Teche Ridge Bypass non-alternative, near Breaux Bridge or St. Martinville?

Secondly, there is no "racial division" with the Connector project. The chosen alignment of the freeway is between two neighborhoods in its northern section or well within its own right-of-way, with direct and continuous access between Sterling Grove and the Ballard Addition/Laplace neighborhoods. The elevated viaduct will allow for full and continuous connectivity between the neighborhoods, and the improvements to the existing Thruway, combined with Complete Streets implementation of green space and walkability and bikeability, will directly enhance and improve the development of the neighborhoods. Not to mention, the removal of the real and actual division that hurts the corridor: the bumper-to-bumper traffic that has turned it into a virtual free fire zone for pedestrians, bikers, and drivers alike. No bypass alternative can provide such benefits without significant other impacts (wetland invasion in the case of Teche Ridge; excessive costs for a western bypass beyond even that of the Connector).

Instead of continuing these stall tactics and parlor tricks, why not just help build the Connector and make it the best it can be for Lafayette and everyone else who will use it?

--- End quote ---


--- End quote ---

 :clap:  :clap:  :clap:

Very well written.

BUT....
Since when has common sense reigned?

bwana39:

--- Quote from: rte66man on March 03, 2023, 09:15:43 AM ---
--- Quote from: Anthony_JK on March 02, 2023, 06:46:10 AM ---Just dropped this comment to the Acadiana Advocate's comment section re: the Connector article:


--- Quote ---So sorry, but this seems like yet another Hail Mary attempt by the most fervent opponents of this project to exploit the "race card" in order to kill this project. The rationale that Mrs. Burruss uses by quoting the original construction of the Evangeline Thruway in the 1960's as "racist" is absolutely daffy. Was it really racism that determined the original location of the Thruway, or was it the need for a direct north-south thoroughfare that could service both the abutting neighborhoods and downtown Lafayette, as well as serve access to USL/UL and the Lafayette Regional Airport? Would Mrs. Burruss or Mr. Waldon prefer the Thruway be build closer to where Ambassador Caffrey Parkway is today? Or, right over Cypress Swamp? Or, like their preferred Teche Ridge Bypass non-alternative, near Breaux Bridge or St. Martinville?

Secondly, there is no "racial division" with the Connector project. The chosen alignment of the freeway is between two neighborhoods in its northern section or well within its own right-of-way, with direct and continuous access between Sterling Grove and the Ballard Addition/Laplace neighborhoods. The elevated viaduct will allow for full and continuous connectivity between the neighborhoods, and the improvements to the existing Thruway, combined with Complete Streets implementation of green space and walkability and bikeability, will directly enhance and improve the development of the neighborhoods. Not to mention, the removal of the real and actual division that hurts the corridor: the bumper-to-bumper traffic that has turned it into a virtual free fire zone for pedestrians, bikers, and drivers alike. No bypass alternative can provide such benefits without significant other impacts (wetland invasion in the case of Teche Ridge; excessive costs for a western bypass beyond even that of the Connector).

Instead of continuing these stall tactics and parlor tricks, why not just help build the Connector and make it the best it can be for Lafayette and everyone else who will use it?

--- End quote ---


--- End quote ---

 :clap:  :clap:  :clap:

Very well written.

BUT....
Since when has common sense reigned?

--- End quote ---

Ms. Burruss and Mr. Waldon are from Delaware.  His linked-in profile would suggest he has returned to Delaware. Not sure about her. They are both college biology instructors who specialize on environmental concerns.  Not sure there is a significant correlation between their educational disciplines and their activism. They do appear to be northern liberals who hate ANY urban freeway. Both appear to be white.

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