THE PROPOSED BELTWAY: DOES IT SOLVE THE BAY AREA'S TRAFFIC CONGESTION AND SPRAWL PROBLEMS?

08/16/06

THREE WEEKS AGO THE TAMPA TRIBUNE REVEALED THAT THE HILLSBOROUGH EXPRESSWAY AUTHORITY WAS ABOUT TO PROPOSE BUILDING A SUPER HIGHWAY BELTWAY FROM MANATEE, THROUGH EASTERN HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY, NORTH TO PASCO COUNTY AND CONNECTING WITH THE VETERANS EXPRESSWAY AND I-275 IN PINELLAS COUNTY....TWO WEEKS AGO THE HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY COMMISSION GAVE ITS INITIAL APPROVAL TO BUILD THE BELTWAY-- WITH THE LONE DISSENTER BEING COMMISSIONER CATHY CASTOR. LAST WEEK THE ST. PETERSBURG TIMES REPORTED THAT A STUDY OF LAND OWNERSHIP RECORDS NEAR THE PROPOSED ROUTE SHOWED THAT THE BACKERS OF THE IDEA OF THE BELTWAY INCLUDE PEOPLE WITH FINANCIAL AND POLITICAL INTERESTS IN SEEING THE PROJECT GO FORWARD..... WE'RE JOINED BY FORMER HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY COMMISSIONER ED TURANCHIK, WHO MADE PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION ONE OF HIS TOP ISSUES WHEN HE WAS ON THE COMMISSION. (On this program Turanchik discussed with listeners the beltway, the cost of car ownership, plans to spend almost a half-billion dollars to create a rail system in the Orlando area, possible rail pathways in the Tampa Bay Area and the impact of rail on sprawl.)

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