The Velvet Turd feels good, but it Stinks. The same can be said about Metro to Loudoun County, it feels good, but the more you hold it, the more it stinks. Sorry lovers of the Choo-Choo, and those interested in promoting feel good projects that poll well knowing full well their popularity is based on bad information and faulty assumptions, but this thing stinks. Put it down and walk away or your hands are going to smell like …… for a very long time.
Metro Phase 2 to Dulles and its 2.5 mile jaunt into Loudoun County is unraveling as we speak. This is a good thing. Let us hope that as a result of the poor planning of the project and its financing that those interested in crafting a rational and affordable fix can get engaged and reconfigure the projects lay-out and its costs. As presently configured, this project with its subsequent long term costs and debt, are a losing proposition for Loudoun County taxpayers.
The 2.5 mile section of this project projecting into Asburn is the portion of this project that simply has to go. This portion of the proposed route is not a transportation project, it is a huge land deal that tethers Loudoun County taxpayers to Metro and MWAA for the rest of our lives at the behest of a select few landowners and developers who stand to profit in a big way. They make millions we get the bill. They get to profit from development directly adjacent to the proposed stations, we the tax payers get to fund not only the rail project, but the surrounding infrastructure that feeds the development. BTW, those of you in the west get to pay huge tolls for the privledge of driving to these end of the line stations to park and hop on the Choo-Choo. Just this week Supervisor Buona admitted that tax increases will be required in order to construct and maintain Metro. No kidding, this is a large part of the opposition to Metro 2.
If the Obama administration were to design and implement this scheme as a part of some Stimulus Package, or other such Federal Mandate, Republicans of all stripes would be screaming at the top of their collective lungs-Crony Capitalism ! However, when the local Republican leaders join the big spending Democrats in Richmond, the Public Sector Unions, and the Editorial Board of the Washington Post, all we get is crickets. Those same supposed fiscal conservatives who would tear into Barack Obama like a free lunch, have all of a sudden lost their voices.
Those trying to ram this project through like Nancy Pelosi at midnight, based on the Choo-Choo as the tool of economic development for Loudoun, should give it a rest. Please don’t urinate on my leg and tell me it’s raining. Does anyone think that Tysons Corner, Reston or Herndon is lacking developement? Tysons Corner has more office and retail space than the entire city of Miami. All of this happened without rail service. Metro into Ashburn is not the magic solution to Loudoun’s development imbalance.
One has to ask the question, if Metro Phase 2 is such a great idea, why aren’t the feds kicking in funding for the project? They helped fund Phase 1. Well, it turns out, that this phase of the Silver Line does not meet the federal guidlines for a transportation rail project deserving of federal funding. That’s right, even the inept Obama administration, a group that can not walk past a rat hole without filling it up with cash, will not fund this sorry excuse for a transportation project. It would appear the gang who failed 10th grade economics because they were in the parking lot listening to Jefferson Airplane while doing bong hits have come to the conclusion that even they can’t in good conscience, fund this land deal. Which leads to my second question. If these goof balls figured it out, why can’t 9 Republican Supervisors do the same? BTW, I am not going to let the Obama Administration off the hook entirely, they did dispatch Ray LaHood to broker a deal and convince the stakeholders to flush more of their own cash down the Metro 2 rat hole. Thanks Ray, but please stay in Washington and assist your boss in the destruction of the rest of the country, we here in NOVA are perfectly capable of screwing this up all by ourselves.
Don’t let them tell you that if Loudoun Opts Out, Metro Rail to Dulles won’t happen. Metro to Dulles Airport is going to happen come hell or high water. This is all the more reason for Loudoun to Opt-Out and spend our tax dollars on projects that actually effect transportation in a meaningful way.