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Friday, January 27, 2017

Cost Of I39/90 Expansion Jumped 68% Over 5 Years

Now estimated at $1.2 Billion!!

Look at the bright side. We still have Gov. Scott Walker, red state divide-and-conquer resentment politics, Grover Norquist tax policy, the laugher curve, a segregated transportation fund, a $7.25/hr minimum wage, members of the local chamber of commerce lawyering up for lower property taxes, new local wheel taxes, 20 years of local tax revenue growth quarantined in TIF districts, and a goofy president and backwards congress threatening Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security and spending $25 billion to build a Wall Of Hate ...and I'm barely scratching the surface.

State Highway Program Audit Excerpt
I-39/90 (Madison to Illinois) Project

Enumerated in 2011, this project’s estimated cost increased from $715.0 million at enumeration to $1.2 billion in August 2016, or by $485.9 million. DOT indicated that the cost estimate increased for a number of reasons other than inflation, including:

 DOT completed additional design engineering and construction work and purchased additional real estate. This increased the cost estimate by $113.6 million.
 FHWA required DOT to increase the scope of the interchange with I-43. This increased the cost estimate by $50.0 million.
 DOT modified its policies to include in the cost estimate the cost of design engineering and construction engineering completed by DOT staff. This increased the cost estimate by $39.3 million.
 DOT upgraded alternate routes and increased shoulder width to minimize traffic delays and accidents. This increased the cost estimate by $38.5 million.
 When forecasting future traffic levels as part of the project planning process in 2008, DOT used traffic counts that were six years old. When DOT updated its forecast in 2012, using traffic counts from that year, it concluded that the project required an increased pavement thickness and eight lanes, instead of six, to accommodate the higher forecast of future traffic levels near Janesville. These changes increased the cost estimate by $35.0 million.
 DOT identified additional utilities costs, such as for relocating electrical wires. This increased the cost estimate by $17.5 million.

In 2010, I pegged the final cost of the I39/90 expansion at $1.5B. There's still plenty of time.


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