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Archive for Friday, June 19, 2009

K-10 leaders laud South Lawrence Trafficway advocate

June 19, 2009

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Energy and leadership

Other news from Friday’s meeting of the K-10 Association in Olathe:

• Members were asked to consider supporting efforts to create a National Center for Energy & Environment Technology Validation, likely at the site of the former Sunflower Army Ammunition Plant in De Soto. The center would help convert research regarding alternative energy technologies into actual, viable manufacturing operations. The potential payoff? For the center’s assistance in such work, K-10 communities could retain “siting rights” for eventual manufacturing centers, said Terry Harris, a leader in the effort.

• Members elected Rob Heise, of Heise-Meyer, a commercial real estate firm, to serve as association president for the coming year; and Mike Amyx, a Lawrence city commissioner, as vice president.

— Bob Johnson received a collective pat on the back for his persistent work on a project that isn’t finished yet, some two dozen years after government officials started seriously kicking around the idea of building a loop for traffic around southern Lawrence.

And members of the K-10 Association Inc. are confident their 2009 Service Award winner will keep driving for completion of his adopted task: construction of the South Lawrence Trafficway.

“When it opens, everybody will take credit for it,” said Rich Caplan, the association’s executive director. “But in the meantime, somebody has to keep it in front of all the people involved — the advocates and the people who have concerns, as well as state and federal officials. They need to continue hearing that the community continues to want the project. ...

“He’s kept the project alive.”

Officials presented the award during the association’s annual meeting Friday at Shadow Glen Golf Club in Olathe. About 60 people attended as representatives of member agencies, businesses and communities, including the cities of Lawrence, De Soto, Eudora, Lenexa, Olathe and Overland Park.

The association long has advocated for the trafficway’s completion, to connect U.S. Highway 59 south of Lawrence with Kansas Highway 10 at the southeastern edge of town, near Noria Road.

While the exact path remains a point of contention — an approved route that would cut through the Baker Wetlands remains the subject of a lawsuit field by environmental, Native American and other groups — the association maintains that it simply wants the highway finished, somewhere and somehow.

Johnson, who spent the previous eight years as a Douglas County commissioner, has served as the project’s leading public advocate. He’s worked to help convince federal officials to come up with initial money for the project, $1.5 million of which already is being used to finance expansion of the wetlands to prepare for the highway’s eventual construction.

U.S. Sen. Pat Roberts is seeking $5 million in more federal financing for the remainder of the trafficway, a project estimated to cost at least $144 million to build.

Mike Amyx, a Lawrence city commissioner, recalls discussing possibilities for the trafficway back in 1985, during his third year as a commissioner. Now — after going on to spend four years as a county commissioner and being re-elected to City Hall in 2005 and, again, in 2009 — Amyx is pleased that Johnson has been willing to push for the project and help move it toward completion.

“He’s worked to make this thing a reality,” said Amyx, elected Friday as vice president of the association. “And it will happen.”

Comments

bronze 4 years, 10 months ago

SLT

say lawrence chambercrat tailwagging

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bronze 4 years, 10 months ago

SLT

sayonara lawrence tribal lands

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bronze 4 years, 10 months ago

SLT

sounds like turnpike through historic marsh & wetlands that previous to Clinton Lake were natural wetlands.

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bronze 4 years, 10 months ago

SLT

south lawrence travesty

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bronze 4 years, 10 months ago

SLT

Senator Roberts pet pork Lawrence former Mayor Amyx pet pork Taxpayer - well they pay.

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bronze 4 years, 10 months ago

SLT

sprawl for lawrence taxpayers!

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Chris Scafe 4 years, 10 months ago

Right now the trafficway ends in a dense commercial area, leaving eastbound travelers with several miles of Lawrence businesses to drive by. If we complete the by-pass, it will do just that; it will by-pass Lawrence and the scores of businesses along the current route. How many companies along Iowa St. and 23rd want less business? How many workers along the way want their hours or their jobs cut? When you by-pass a town, you by-pass its economy and its people.

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bronze 4 years, 10 months ago

AMYX is for the SLT - too bad.

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hujiko 4 years, 10 months ago

Gotta love that irony, no one is perfect after all.

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helter_skelter 4 years, 10 months ago

Ironically, huji, your own post contains a typo:

"If I'm not mistake it..."

I believe you meant to say "mistaken."

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hujiko 4 years, 10 months ago

Hey Jonathan, I found a typo for you:

"While the exact path remains a point of contention — an approved route that would cut through the Baker Wetlands remains the subject of a lawsuit field by environmental"

If I'm not mistake it should be "filed"

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HMcMellon 4 years, 10 months ago

More correctly, Johnson has held up construction for 20 years because he refused to return to the South of River route that was the original plan. He mounted this stupid up-hill battle just so he could make his buddies who bought up land along a ridiculous route that is everything but a bypass. The reward he received is for extreme loyalty to the crooks who have been holding this up for all these years. Since it was those who he has been trying to make rich who gave him the award, this is not even newsworthy.

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JackRipper 4 years, 10 months ago

That's interesting, made two comments last night on this that mysteriously disappeared. Perhaps we do have more to fear from the old boys then I thought.

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logrithmic 4 years, 10 months ago

The rightwing, including Democrap Amyx, continue to harbor the idea that the lies of everlasting growth and sprawl somehow bring prosperity.

Have they not been observing what is going on? Our oil-dependent economy is going down. Seriously. And we have no fallback. Even our highways are made from petroleum products, our food is grown and sprayed with petroleum products, etc. No fallback. Nothing.

This association, instead of being lauded by the Journal World, should be ridiculed. Look at the waste of taxpayer monies! Look at that bridge on South Iowa you paid for! Sitting there. No reason to have built it until the route had been chosen, but in KDOT's stupid and inane mind (along with the support of the U.S. Army Corp of Engineers), we have this permanent monument to stupidity.

Oh, and Journal World. If you're going to recount history, perhaps you should start with the way the K-10 "Leaders" floated the bond proposal for the highway before a vote had been held - a bond proposal that was ruled illegal by the courts in Kansas. This highway has a long history of corrupt and vested special interests (developturds, trucking, construction) pushing aside the laws of the state to get their way - not to mention the $250 million cost of the first leg, the projected $150 million to complete the second leg, and the ownership of land along the route by the publisher of this paper) .

Sprawl is not the answer. Those seeing forclosures and the current housing and business downturn - wake up. The old paradigm is history.

Read Michael Klare to see how the federal gov has lied to us about the supply of oil as well (not unexpected considering Bush, Cheney, Rice, etc. were all oil people):

http://www.commondreams.org/view/2009/06/12

From link:

"The global energy equation is changing rapidly, and with it is likely to come great power competition, economic peril, rising starvation, growing unrest, environmental disaster, and shrinking energy supplies, no matter what steps are taken."

Americans are in for a "crude" awakening. Highways are not the answer. They are a lie and a source of great corruption.

God bless America and the rest of the world....

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Reality_Check 4 years, 10 months ago

Red moon rising: Really, you'll drive 9 blocks south before you go east and west from say KU or 23rd st? I don't buy it...you'll just drive on 23rd or 19th or 27th like you usually do.

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just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 4 years, 10 months ago

This isn't about a highway anymore. This is about the egos of movers and shakers who can't stand the thought that "injunz" and "hippies" might get in the way of their "Big Important Plans" (not to mention $millions in corporate welfare and Roberts's pork.)

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redmoonrising 4 years, 10 months ago

With all the money spent by both sides of this issue, we could have had the road built by now and in use for several years. Look at it this way, we can always make friends while sitting at lights on 23rd St., choke, gag, gasp.

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thebcman 4 years, 10 months ago

drain the damned swamp and build it already!

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JackRipper 4 years, 10 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

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JackRipper 4 years, 10 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

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