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Tuesday - September 26, 2017 9:29 am

State finally abandons 5B-1

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It sure took awhile, but it now appears that almost 20 years after voters said no to a new north-south corridor in La Crosse, the state is finally listening. Even though way back in 1998 voters rejected the idea of putting a new north-south road through La Crosse, the state refused to abandon the idea. Now, ding-dong, it appears 5B-1 is finally dead. And while is not as dead as the wicked witch, the Wisconsin Department of Transportation has halted work on the study which continued to plan for the possibility of a new road. This was a long time coming. When voters rejected the referendum, they assumed that was the final word. However, the money had already been allocated for the project, and the DOT has continued to pressure the city to approve some way to get traffic from the north into downtown La Crosse. Now, the DOT has shelved the study, although the money for the project is still enumerated in the budget. It is a lot of money, about $143 million. The DOT has been inflexible about letting the city figure out how to best get traffic through the city. But think how much better our roads could be with that money. We could fix La Crosse street, one of the city's worst roads. We could fix other pothole filled streets too. The state isn't likely to just hand over the cash, with no input on how it is spent. But it sure seems the people of La Crosse know better where the roads should and shouldn't go.

Scott Robert Shaw

Scott Robert Shaw is the Program Director for both 1410 WIZM and 580 WKTY.   He's currently the morning news anchor on 1410 WIZM, Z93 and 95-7 The Rock.  He joined Mid-West Family Broadcasting as a reporter/anchor in 1989 and served as News Director from 1990-2015.   He's been the winner of several Wisconsin Broadcaster's Association awards for Best Editorial in Wisconsin.  He enjoys traveling, bicycling and cooking.

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