Virginia Builds $1 Million “Super” Bus Stop
April 4, 2013 10:09 PM
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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.”
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RE: A general rule
4/5/2013 12:47:49 PM
This is not all on the shoulders of the government. The government bids the job out to a private contractor(s). The tax dollars for this project are leaving the government and going directly into private contractors. Long ago private interests found that by contracting out government services there was a huge profit to be made. Paid off politicians hamstinged the government agencies built to monitor these contracts. There are large numbers of Government administrative employees working hard to do all they can to reign in costs and stop corruption. So interestingly enough the culprits are the "private businesses" paying bribes (in the form of campaign contributions) and their co-horts in the Congress and Whitehouse. I personally fail to see how these quid pro quo contributions do not run afoul of the federal corruption act. Oh wait... the pols have control of the U.S Attorney's office.
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