Blue Bridge fiasco teaches lessons

Re: “Enjoy the new bridge and move on,” letter, Sept. 6.

The letter-writer suggests we should forget the Blue Bridge fiasco. I say this is the time to pay particular attention to Victoria council’s missteps on that project. Choices made resulted in an overbudget, over deadline and extravagantly designed bridge. That kind of dubious oversight might easily translate into other surprises.

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For instance, this council has opted to build a new Crystal Pool for $70 million rather than renovating the current pool for $40 million. The costs of addressing the lost outdoor recreation amenities in Central Park and increased parking for the proposed 20 per cent larger, relocated facility were not even considered in the process. Such poor planning is troublesome — and expensive. Add to that Victoria’s share of looming sewage-treatment costs and the burden on taxpayers becomes ever more daunting.

There has never been a better time to pay close attention to publicly funded projects and to learn from past mistakes. With the October election six weeks away, what kind of mayor and council will Victoria elect? One committed to using taxpayer dollars prudently, I hope.

Allan Gallupe


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