Warren, Rhode Island, has new sidewalks from the center of town down Rte 103 to the Massachusetts border, almost two miles away. Thanks to the Stimulus Plan.
I have driven that road hundreds of times, and also have cycled the route many times.
I never noticed any particular problem with the sidewalks. I also almost never noticed anyone using the sidewalks, particularly once you leave the very center of town.
The road is a local main road, not exactly a walk in the park. But there are new sidewalks as far as the eye can see.
I’m sure that the people who built the sidewalks are happy, as are the concrete companies. The people who live on the road also must feel fortunate to be the beneficiary of federal largesse.
But now that the project is almost over, the jobs will disappear. No long term economic activity was stimulated.
Warren, Rhode Island, also has plenty of empty storefronts. The sidewalks will not change that, and neither will the Stimulus Plan.
Update: A RI Dept. of Transportation stimulus proposal (at p. 6) from 2009 lists the total projected cost of the sidewalks as $600,000 for the in town portion (0.2 miles), and $2.5 million for the 2.2 miles to the Massachusetts border.
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