The Lafayette Consolidated Council decided to delay until April 7 any decisions on how to divvy up more than $9 million in federal stimulus dollars among a host of road- and public-transit projects. That could give planners time to better streamline priorities on the current list of candidate projects.
City-Parish President Joey Durel publicly questioned the wisdom in at least one of the projects pertaining to public transportation: $75,000 for hurricane-proof bus shelters. The issue came up Thursday morning during Durel’s call-in radio program in KPEL, and he elaborated on it with The Independent Weekly. The proposal for a $75,000 expenditure is not to build the shelters but rather to generate a design for a hurricane-proof shelter. The shelters themselves would cost $7,500 apiece, according to Durel.
“One of my questions was, ‘We’re going to spend $75,000 just to design a hurricane proof shelter that costs us $7,500?’ You know, I’d rather take my chances than spend that much money,” Durel says, “That’s not building it; that’s just designing it.”
Durel also wonders whether LCG could simply pattern a hurricane-proof bus shelter after a pre-existing design, rather than design one from scratch. “Surely, somewhere in the southern part of the United States on the Gulf Coast, somebody has designed a hurricane-proof shelter.”
However, the city-parish president says he isn't too concerned that something like a hurricane-proof bus shelter will get in the way of making the best decisions on how to allocate the stimulus money. “They have to put things on a piece of paper so there can be discussion about it. But that certainly doesn’t make it anywhere close to being etched in stone.”
Other proposals on the list of public-transit projects include $800,000 to purchase two 35-foot low-floor buses and roughly $431,000 to upgrade bus communications systems. By far the most expensive proposal is to spend $2.5 million for upgrades to the Rosa Parks Transportation Center downtown. A PDF document detailing the list of proposed stimulus spending for both road- and public-transit projects can be obtained here.
Local and state agents Thursday night raided The Keg, the popular college bar located in the area known as The Strip, leading to the (at least) temporary closure of the venue.
Here's your daily look at late-breaking national and international news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about Friday, April 18, 2014:
Friday's Blogs from the Bog!
Time and time again, the Lafayette Parish School Board shows an overwhelming tendency toward idiocy, but Wednesday night’s contentious discussion over Northside High School’s teen mother program tops the list of dumb discussions.
C & C Technologies, HIT Fitness, R3 Sciences, the Acadiana Symphony Association and the United Way of Acadiana recognized for innovation.
“The accomplishment of this goal within the next ten years is not only critical for the region to effectively compete with other regions for residents and businesses, but also to provide an amenity for everyone in Acadiana to enjoy.”
Education Superintendent John White says a continued push to try to keep Louisiana from using tests associated with the Common Core education standards are creating "a state of chaos" for public school teachers.
The Acadiana Symphony Orchestra has decided to end its traditional Independence Day spectacular known as Red White & Boom.
Under the deal, Teche shareholders would get 1.162 shares of IberiaBank for each share of Teche stock.
Gov. Bobby Jindal's plan to use $210 million in surplus and one-time money to help balance next year's budget received the backing Thursday of the State Bond Commission, support that was needed for the maneuver to work.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
State wildlife and fisheries agents have arrested a 39-year-old man accused of stealing crawfish.
An East Feliciana Parish lawmaker has jettisoned his proposal to make it harder for a condemned prisoner to appeal a death sentence.
Senators advanced a proposal Wednesday that would let the governor remove New Orleans-area levee board members for violating what he considers to be public policy, despite concerns it would introduce political meddling into state flood protection.
The must have pieces this season
Dave Perkins, LCG Comp Plan honored along with local architects and designers at the 2014 INDesign Awards
Greg Manuel’s Lafayette-based residential development company is taking advantage of exponential industrial growth in Lake Charles.
Longtime Lafayette retailer ventures online.
It’s not how aggressive or conservative you are — it’s planning for risk that matters most.
Thanks to cutting-edge digital technology, more and more consumers are banking on ATMs and mobile phones.
Regional bank bids farewell to Downtown May 30
ABiz takes a look back at the most noteworthy moments for the local banking industry over the last year.
Most experts say short-term interest rates will be unchanged through 2014, but long-term rates are inching up.
Largest recruitment event in Acadiana returns May 21 to the Cajundome Convention Center
A lawyer’s ad should only be a starting point, as there is much more to consider when seeking quality representation.
Thanks to the inaugural 2012 INNOV8, a design for lifting heavy objects was brought to market.
The annual juried competition recognizes excellence in architecture, interior design and historic preservation in Lafayette and the five surrounding parishes.
Cypress Bayou GM hosts open house.
New hires, promotions, transfers in Acadiana business
The scion of a landmark Four Corners restaurant climbs back into Lafayette’s culinary scene as franchisee for a popular burger chain.