September 21, 2005

IMAGINE HOW SAFE A HUGE PUBLIC WORKS PROJECT WOULD MAKE NEW ORLEANS?:

Error puts a hole in Big Dig budgeting (Raphael Lewis, September 21, 2005, Boston Globe)

Big Dig officials significantly overestimated the amount of money that could be raised by selling off the project's Kneeland Street headquarters, creating a hole in their financing plan for the megaproject's final stages, officials disclosed yesterday.

The error has forced project officials to withdraw $67 million from a state transportation fund, money that would otherwise pay for smaller highway and transit projects around Massachusetts.

For years, municipal leaders have complained that the $14.6 billion Big Dig has been eating up too much of state construction money, and news that the project is tapping $67 million more intensified their concern.


Experts Say Faulty Levees Caused Much of Flooding (Michael Grunwald and Susan B. Glasser, September 21, 2005, Washington Post)
Louisiana's top hurricane experts have rejected the official explanations for the floodwall collapses that inundated much of New Orleans, concluding that Hurricane Katrina's storm surges were much smaller than authorities have suggested and that the city's flood- protection system should have kept most of the city dry.

The Army Corps of Engineers has said that Katrina was just too massive for a system that was not intended to protect the city from a storm greater than a Category 3 hurricane, and that the floodwall failures near Lake Pontchartrain were caused by extraordinary surges that overtopped the walls.

But with the help of complex computer models and stark visual evidence, scientists and engineers at Louisiana State University's Hurricane Center have concluded that Katrina's surges did not come close to overtopping those barriers. That would make faulty design, inadequate construction or some combination of the two the likely cause of the breaching of the floodwalls along the 17th Street and London Avenue canals -- and the flooding of most of New Orleans.


Imagine what crappy work $50 billion would have bought?

Posted by Orrin Judd at September 21, 2005 8:07 AM
Comments

They can't hold water but they shure do move slush.

Posted by: Luciferous at September 21, 2005 3:45 PM

Does anyone know if the author of the Washington Post article above, Michael Grunwald, is related to the famous Mandy?

Posted by: erp at September 21, 2005 10:30 PM
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