Kudos to Tomas Regalado, Michelle Spence-Jones and another City of Miami Commissioner who wasn't mentioned in today's Miami Herald or other news media
In a narrow vote of 3-2, the City of Miami passed on shoveling $55 million down the $1 billion-plus hole known as the Miami Tunnel Project. Led by commissioner Tomás Regalado who has been against it from the get-go because the city's contribution would tap funds from the Community Redevelopment Agency-- its mission is to "improve the quality of life in some of the city's downtrodden neighborhoods, `thereby achieving the complete eradication of slums and blight'.'' Fellow commissioner Michelle Spence-Jones who represents one of those "downtrodden neighborhoods" backed Regalado. As of this moment, MVB hasn't a clue who the third commissioner was who voted against throwing millions of dollars down our own version of Alice's "rabbit hole." Hopefully they will remain firm because now the real pressure begins, coming at them from the county and the state.
MVB believes there is no way this tunnel from Watson Island to the Port of Miami is going to be profitable for the city-- even if tolls are levied. It's structured much like those infamous movie investments where some dumb bastard agrees to take "points" on a movie deal. Because of unforeseen expenses or the costs of doing business, profits never materialize. Miami-Dade county residents have already become "producers" for life on the Carnival Center because of its immense expense. We believe the same thing will happen to Miami residents-- they'll never see their investment. However, everyone will pay for this mad plan through a higher cost of living-- the only real thing that will be passed back to the "investors."
UpDate (12/13/08): Christmas comes early with the announcement that the tunnel project succumbs to a well-deserved death when the state and Bouygues Travaux Publics can't agree on terms. Hurray!