Nov 25, 2015

Bridge To Nothing But Higher Taxes

Mayor Pawlowski was preening on his facebook page that the new American Parkway bridge is #4 in the country, so I clicked on the link. I still don't know exactly what that refers to. Allow me to quote the author of the article in LV Business, When it opens, drivers will be able to travel on one road from the east side of Allentown near Coca-Cola Park and go over the Lehigh River to the city’s bustling downtown. I have a confession, I never understood the American Parkway, it's the road to nowhere. The new bridge, while being planned for 60 years, is of cookie cutter design, devoid of any uniqueness. All that it accomplishes is bypassing Union Blvd, and taking commerce away from the businesses there.  The Morning Call writes, At last, a link between Route 22 and downtown Allentown. I though that 7th Street already did that,  both quicker and shorter.  The photograph of Pawlowski and city council cutting the ribbon refer to them as dignitaries, which is better than defendants. That $36 million spent on the new bridge would have been better spend maintaining existing bridges. Both Pennsylvania and Allentown neglect their bridges until the point of no return, then build a new one.

Elsewhere in the news,  the midgets, aka state representatives and senators, voted down eliminating school property taxes, but will go ahead increasing your income and sales tax, what a surprise. The voters richly deserve this,  for voting for the same incumbents, election after election.

;Mike Molovinsky states in his blog about the new American Parkway Bridge : "The new bridge, while being  planned for 60 years, is of cookie cutter design, devoid of any uniqueness. All that it accomplishes is bypassing 
Union Blvd, and taking commerce away from the businesses there. "
What does City Council and the Mayor say about that?
I tend to think that the Bridge may be a benefit to commerce in Hanover Township(Lehigh County) and it does provide an easier way for South Siders to get to 22 if they are going east and north in their travels. 
But It doesn't aid the South side in their travels if they are going west.
But as far as the East Side is concerned we have become bypassed as usual .... And maybe isolated .. The Bridge has no benefit or utility for us getting to downtown Allentown. We have to go out of our way to 
get on it. And as of January 2016 we won't have any resident on Council either and how many of us are selected to server on the cities various boards, commissions and authorities. Very few if any do serve .. Some of our best people are boycotted by the Administration because of their independence of thought. And soon the Tilghman Street Bridge will be closed ... When that happens we will be more connected to Bethlehem then 

photocredit:Emily Opilo/The Morning Call/November24,2015


Dave said...

It does connect Mountainville and Salisbury with the Thruway via Third Street, so if you live in that part of town it's easier to get to the Airport.

But I don't think that is what the big ballyhoo is all about.

I find it slightly amusing that they're comparing it to the old proposed Allentown Spur Route (I-178), which was an ill-conceived project to run a four-lane highway though many neighborhoods of Allentown which paralleled Seventh Street connecting the Thruway to about where Zions Church is. .

Anonymous said...


Like the rest of America I have yet to take the bridge, it can help alleviate the usual traffic congestion west bound on Union. That will be helpful, but the idea it provides a new link from 22 to the downtown is true but the route is hardly direct. One would exit 22 at airport road, head south, then take a right on American Parkway, then follow that road behind the stadium to the new bridge that will put one in an downtown destination few would find helpful. I think will use it from time to time, but have found the entire project a bit of a mystery.

But what do I know?

Scott Armstrong

spencer said...

It provides a good alternative to taking 22 during rush hour, which will get worse when they're gonna start more roadwork on it in that not too distant future.

michael molovinsky said...

scott@8:14, if it is to be the route to the bustling downtown, why did penndot just commission a study of 7th street. it's just another indication exactly how inept harrisburg actually is.

Anonymous said...

I appreciate the photograph of the dignitarys.
It brightened up my day.

Anonymous said...

Actually, the bridge provides a direct route for all of the fine diners to take. I dont want to drive past all of the ghetto dwelers on my way to consume a $100.00 meal.

Anonymous said...

Happy Easter my freind, as you put to print the road to nowhere hopeful one day going somewhere finally making som sort 9f destination¿!($ The flee path transites are still currently 22 and 78 as the close down of hamilton street between 9th and 6th on venue night still hasn't quite caught on to attendees¿!($ .Needless to say between the stockades the gost town area flock are just not parttaking in the high quality nightlife, I am sure the free tickets reciepiants are props in window seats like hess's wimdow treatments with maniquenns¿($ That said are the meals compt by the tax payers too¿!($
patent pending

Anonymous said...

Much like the Route 222 bypass (boulevard?) around Wescosville this project is about 40 years after it was needed. However, it surely will help with the development along the River.

Anonymous said...

I'm surprised there are no bike lanes on it.

Anonymous said...

The bike lane grant is in the pipeline.

Anonymous said...

The Mayor actually publicly pushed for an interesting design for the bridge, based upon a new bridge in Boston. At first, PennDOT said that it would be too expensive to build that type of structure, but they could include giant pillars that would make it look like that bridge. However, in the course of budgeting of highway dollars among competing projects, there was little chance of having cosmetic pillars added.

When a bridge is historic or replaces a historic bridge, PennDOT will often include fake stone facades and decorative light fixtures. The 8th Street bridge was considered historic under federal regs, so PennDOT had to make the new bridge look like the old bridge.