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It expects to build 23 more at over $900,000 a piece

The city of Arlington just recently opened an impressive bus stop with a not-so-impressive price tag of $1 million.
The “super stop” in Arlington, Virginia is unlike any other bus stop. It has a custom designed roof made of glass and steel; a wall of etched glass; heaters in the floor; gorgeous landscaping, and concrete/stainless steel benches.
The bus stop has 10-inch high curbs, 90 feet of concrete and can shelter 15 people at a time while waiting for buses to arrive – all at a cost of $1 million.
The cost comes down to $575,000 for construction/fabrication and $440,000 for construction management and inspections, where federal/state money took care of 80 percent of the total price tag.
When Arlington citizens discovered the cost of the super stop, many were outraged.
“That’s ridiculous,” said Robin Stewart, a citizen who was waiting at the super stop. “From a citizen, from a voter, whoever put that budget through needs to get their butt canned. It’s an outrage.”
The super stop opened on March 11, and 23 more are planned for Arlington’s streetcars. The county has set aside $20.8 million for all of them, which is about $904,000 a piece.
The idea behind the fancy bus stops is to not only accommodate Arlington’s plans for its streetcars and buses (about 16,000 people use the Columbia Pike buses for transportation) but to also draw people to the area. New housing is expected to be built in the area over the next two decades, and the county hopes the bus stops will help it flourish.
“When you do a prototype, you end up heavily front-loading on the costs,” said Dennis Leach, Arlington’s transportation director. “These are more like high-capacity bus or rail stops.”
But citizens are concerned about the budget, saying that Arlington can build nice bus stops without having to spend $1 million.
“Oh my God. How much steel? How much cement? How much glass? One million? Bring them to court,” said Husain Hamid, who was waiting at the super stop. “People are hungry. People are sleeping on the street. It doesn’t need $1 million.”

Source: Washington Post

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By Integral9 on 4/5/2013 8:05:49 AM , Rating: 2
Not surprised. Arlington has a huge tax base. Arlington is a fully developed county, meaning practically all the land is occupied by businesses and residents. What's not occupied is either undevelopable or dedicated park land. It's the closest county in VA to DC. In 2008 the median price of a house was over $500,000 and 10% of all the single family homes were worth over $1,000,000 (many of which struggle to reach even 3000 sqft or even a full acre). It has not seen a decline in housing prices since the economy dropped. In 2011, the median annual household income in Arlington is over $100,000; only surpassed by it's neighbors of Fairfax and Loudoun, which were the top 3 in the US. ( In addition to that, the county is only 26 sq miles, making it one of the smallest counties in the US.

Huge tax base + itty bitty foot print = lots of money to spend in a small area.

RE: Arlington
By DockScience on 4/5/2013 2:18:15 PM , Rating: 2
And let's not forget that there are ZERO Republicans on the Arlington council, it's a blue as blue can get.

RE: Arlington
By Schadenfroh on 4/5/2013 4:42:39 PM , Rating: 2
Yep, thankfully, the state government is strong enough to prevent them from enacting too much foolishness (e.g. a county income tax, gun bans, etc).

<-- Arlington resident

BTW, thanks folks outside the beltway for paying for 80% of the costs for this, say what you will about the lefties running Arlington, but they know how to siphon $$$ from the rest of the country.

RE: Arlington
By Xando on 4/7/2013 2:01:24 PM , Rating: 2
BUT: They're not spending their money on it. They're getting the feds to finance 80% of it, and the new state wide transportation tax hikes to finance much of the rest. AND: all of it will do very little to relieve the traffic problem in NoVA.

One of the best traffic mitigation plans to come along was expanding the lanes on I-95 south down through Stafford. From Springfield to Fredricksburg has become one the biggest bottlenecks on the whole Mid-Atlantic corridor.

Who do you think has been opposing this measure, putting up committee roadblocks left and right, seeking to steer these monies to their pet "Smart Growth" projects such as their damn streetcar line? Who, but Arlington County?

RE: Arlington
By BRB29 on 4/8/2013 9:57:43 AM , Rating: 2
Are you crazy?

The fact that DC area is rated top 10 worst traffic in the nation every single year for decades should already tell you you're wrong. I still have not seen Fredericksburg in there. In fact DC has won #1 worst traffic more than any other city in the nation.

Traffic From Springfield to Fredericksburg is heaven compared to traffic in Arlington and its surrounding cities.

"There is a single light of science, and to brighten it anywhere is to brighten it everywhere." -- Isaac Asimov
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