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Yes, "infrastructure spending" means "more construction"

By DJ Kelly November 21, 2007

This Q Blog entry frustrates me. While I agree with Angela’s thesis statement her logic on one point is confusing.

Yes, we all agree Calgary city council needs to focus on infrastructure. You’ve said it, council has said it, the media has said it, and 41 percent of Calgarians have said it. But Angela’s got road rage. She’s so so angry at her morning commute she’s spitting fire in the wrong direction.

She makes the point that city council needs to get working on improving the infrastructure of Calgary’s road system because there is too much road work. Huh? Think about that for a second… She wants the City to build more roads, but she wants them to stop working on the roads at the same time. ??? How’s that possible?

However her main point is taken. The City of Calgary is in an unusual political situation of having so few people worried about taxation and so many worried about their infrastructure that raising taxes after announcing so many new road and transit projects should be a no-brainer.

Please just make sure you spend the money in the right place: on roads, transit and other things that will actually improve Calgarians’ “quality of life”. Give the people what they want.

BTW, I think this is the smartest move Council has made it a while. But is a 10% contingency enough? I think construction costs have risen more than that in the past 10 years. I’d expect them to potentially do the same again. In a worst case scenario you saved too much money and have more (plus interest) to spend later.