Search Results for 'river greenway' ↓

Millions of Dollars spent on the river greenway . . .

And who is using it the most? Pokemon zombies who downloaded the app for free. To bad Rainbow Comics isn’t downtown, now that’s economic development.

pokeman-zombies

Who is really ‘Benefitting’ from the River Greenway Project?

The City of SF Audit Committee will be releasing their audit of the river greenway project, which has cost taxpayers almost $10 million so far (the project was originally going to cost around $2-4 million, if my memory serves me well). The original plan was to upgrade the bike trail and landscaping by the river, which would have been just fine. But someone got a hold of someone’s ear at the Parks department and now we have the current ‘San Antonio’ version of the greenway project. This all started with mayor Munson and has seemed to snowball since then, we have bought a bridge (maybe two), bulk heads, a spray park and the infamous (and dangerous) steps into the river. We have also torn down a parking ramp.

Document: confluence

Design of the project was almost 10% of the total cost of the entire project. In the research I have done, projects of this size and nature usually run about 6% of the total project cost. I knew this was going to be a money sucker from the beginning, we have even bonded (borrowed) almost 50% of the total cost of the project. I have often thought if taxpayers would have voted on this project, it would have been scaled back. It seems contractors, developers, engineers and architects are deciding what is good for the citizens of this town, this practice needs to end.

 

Phase II of the River Greenway Project started today?

They must have heard my Independence Day speech last night at the city council meeting and got inspired (FF: 4:20 ) BTW, it was nice meeting another foot soldier at the meeting last night 🙂

This email and these photos were sent to me today (awaiting some video);

I was downtown at around 7:30 this morning and came across something very interesting! Soukup is very busy today working on the east bank of the river (Phase II of the River Greenway Project). Also, it appears that they are dumping contaminated soil from the east bank directly into the river. Not sure if this is permissible, but I was at the Park Board meeting when Jon Jacobson of Confluence (the landscape architect on the River Greenway Project, Phases I and II) told the Board that the soils on the East Bank Phase II are even more contaminated than in Phase I. Someone needs to alert the EPA and the Dept. of Natural Resources. They are the agencies that permitted this job and it appears that there is no oversight taking place.


The city fails to thank TAX PAYERS for funding 95% of the River Greenway project

Huether channels Patrick Lalley (Argus Leader) but doesn’t credit him, “This may not be San Antonio, but it is the best little city in America.”

I attended the ribbon cutting of the River Greenway project this afternoon. The one thing that stuck out was all the back patting of local business people who helped contribute to this project, but not once were the citizens of Sioux Falls thanked for funding this project, a project that benefits DT business owners especially the owner of Cherapa Place, Jeff S. Oh, he was thanked for his $100,000 contribution (that he milked out of his buddies).

But what a kickass deal for him? He throws in $100,000 and in return he gets this awesome facade valued at over $12 million paid for by me and you.

This is always something that has stuck in my craw. We love to thank local businessmen for their two-bit contributions (even though Jeff had a backroom contract deal with Munson that if the bridge and facade was not built, he would sue), yet when it comes to our contributions as tax payers we are the gum under the table. If anything, this ribbon cutting should have been about us as citizens, not DT businesses getting a sweet-ass deal.

New Hilton downtown to collect a special tax to help w/improvements to the River Greenway

I think this is a great idea. The city council (Item #35) did the right thing in approving this special tax; hiltontax

What I can’t figure out is why are we expecting Hilton to collect a special tax for the improvements but Cherapa and CNA Surety are actually being granted tax breaks (TIF’s). Couldn’t they implement a special tax on the space they lease?

While I think having visitors help pay for our Greenway as a good idea, I’m wondering why Hilton is being singled out?

Ellis hits another homer with his story about the River Greenway Project cost overruns

Of course we have batted this around on South DaCola for awhile, and you can reread everything we already know;

The city negotiated a contract with Scherschligt to buy an option for land at the Zip site. As part of that contract, Scherschligt asked the city to begin work on the river greenway.

This meeting of course was held in the middle of the night in Munson’s coat closet.

But this part of the column stood out like a sore thumb;

The Argus Leader requested change orders and documents related to the project last week, but that information had not been provided as of Friday afternoon.

Gee, I wonder why?

River Greenway Steps: Shoddy work or by design?

I was examining the ‘steps into the river’ tonight, which are mostly completed and I noticed where there is curvature they are uneven (vertical face) – and noticeable. I’m no concrete or engineering expert, so I’m wondering if that was done for some water flow reason? You will notice in the photo that the white concrete steps are straight, but when it turns into the brown concrete it gets really wavy. This is usually the result of warped and bowed wood forms. I know if you use sheet metal forms you can probably alleviate that problem. But like I said, I’m no expert.

Anyone wish to take a stab at this? Shoddy work or something else?

River Greenway Project right on schedule?

We will all get an update on Monday.

The SF River Greenway project is getting environmental funds?

Look at all the waste we are cleaning up with these cool steps

I guess building bike trails and amphitheaters qualifies as ‘environmental’ projects;

7/15/11 • The City of Sioux Falls announces that the Downtown River Greenway Project will receive funding made available through the Big Sioux River Environmental Trust Fund.

The order authorizing the full expenditure of the fund was signed by U.S. District Court Judge Lawrence Piersol after receiving the necessary approvals from the counties of Minnehaha and Lincoln in South Dakota and Lyon County in Iowa. The fund, established in 1996, was created in a settlement with John Morrell & Co. for environmental infractions and is estimated at approximately $1.9 million.

The funding will help pay for improvements downtown along the Greenway between Sixth Street and Tenth Street. The improvements are designed to provide greater public use and access to the river while also providing water quality improvements and reducing pollution in the Big Sioux River.

From a reader;

Phase I is much more than just blocks and concrete for yet another amphitheater. 5.1 million was allocated for Phase I of the project (between 6th and 8th street) 3.3 million of that was supposed to go towards items that are ENVIRONMENTALLY related. I fail to see how tons and tons of concrete between 6th and 8th street is environmentally related.

And I find the settlement money even more troubling. The city says the 1.9 million in this trust fund is going to be used for improvements from 6th to 10th street. Huh? As I recall, the taxpayer funded 5.1 million was supposed to be for improvements from 6th to 8th street. Another 3 million, of which this 1.9 million is part of, was originally intended for Phase II from 8th street to 10th street.

About that 1.9 million dollars. That is money from a settlement with John Morrell for polluting the Sioux River back in the ’90’s. It is called “The Big Sioux River ENVIRONMENTAL Trust Fund.” It was established in 1996 by court order. The money was to be used primarily for these 3 reasons.

1. Reduce pollution along the Big Sioux River.

2. Identify continuing sources of pollution along the Big Sioux River.

3. Develop and implement strategies to reduce and/or eliminate pollution along the Big Sioux River.

How does a heavy concentration of concrete along a small stretch of DT meet these ends?

The intent of the use of that 1.9 mill was clearly laid out in the 1996 settlement. It is called The Big Sioux River Environmental Trust Fund for a reason. I stated the top three reasons above. Using that money to build concrete and block barriers for stages every 200 feet, or two pedestrian walkways within 100 feet of the 8th street crossing does not meet the environmental smell test IMHO.

IMHO bringing the 1.9 mill into play now BEFORE the 6th to 8th street phase is even close to completion says one thing. A while back finding bedrock for phase I added a mere 1.4 mill to the cost. Just another cost overrun. Something this city knows real well. Is this “environmental” trust money being used to finish phase I, or will it be used to turn 8th to 10th street into a concrete jungle? GREENWAY project? Yeah….right.

No surprise the city is running out of money on this project and there is cost overuns, it is typical of how the city operates. That is why a $120 million dollar cost estimate on the EC is a complete joke.

 

Another reason why the River Greenway project amphitheater is a gigantic waste of tax dollars

First, I want to clarify something. I support upgrades along the greenway like making the bike trail more appealing along that route. But I have often thought building an amphitheater and a pedestrian bridge right in front of a private office building is questionable. Now it seems we have more hidden costs;

SIOUX FALLS, SD – The $5 million River Greenway project along the banks of the Big Sioux River in downtown Sioux Falls is digging up some hidden costs.

The River Greenway project began three months ago. It will add larger sidewalks, an amphitheater and more landscaping to make the banks of the Big Sioux more of a park than just a bike path.

And to build the walls along the water crews have to drill down to the bedrock, but that rock is not where they thought it would be.

“The bedrock elevation throughout the wall section of our project was a little bit deeper than anticipated,” River Greenway project Manager Brad Ludens said.

Kinda reminds you of another project that we did not need that went over cost, doesn’t it?

Cough . . . cough . . . Phillips to the Falls . . . cough . . . cough. How’s the growth and development going in that area? Heard they are trying to get an old folks home built there. That’ll bring in the tourists to Downtown!

If we knew for sure that the Events Center would be built next to the Cherapa place, I would be all for the pedestrian bridge, but I question this project when there is so much uncertainty. Also, as I understand it, when the $5 million was approved for the project, Mike Cooper had no idea how the money was going to be spent, I think a lot of these amenities are clearly pulled from someone’s ass.

We can beautify this part of the greenway, and we don’t need to spend $6.4 million to do it.