Marcus Green provides a comprehensive summary of the issues pertaining to the K & I Bridge, and its future adaptation as a shared-use path linking New Albany and Portland.
The best way to proceed would be the immediate nationalization of Norfolk Southern, the seizure of its owners' assets, and the sowing of salt on their verdant properties.
Barring that, I'm narrowing the focus to One Southern Indiana and its CEO, Wendy Dant Chesser. Remember just a few months ago when Dant Chesser was leading the abortive charge for the auto-centric Regional Cities Initiative lottery, and while doing so, brushing aside eminent domain concerns?
Well, she's been born again.
“Having (the K & I) open would do things for this portion of New Albany and Louisville in the same way that it did for the Big Four Bridge in terms of economic development,” (the Greenway's Shaunna Graf) said.
But the K&I is “not a priority” for One Southern Indiana, the chamber of commerce for Clark and Floyd counties, and isn’t included in its advocacy agenda, said Wendy Dant Chesser, the chamber’s president and CEO.
Dant Chesser said she would like to see a loop across the river completed, but that it’s important to remember that Norfolk Southern owns the bridge.
“We have to approach this as any public project that would want access to private property,” she said. “So it has to be done with respect and the interest of the owner in mind.”
The upshot is this: When it comes to boilerplate corporate welfare for the big regional players, Dant Chesser is unconcerned about the property rights of smallholders. When the topic turns to an economic development idea standing primarily to benefit smallholders with little or no inconvenience to a big regional players, she's concerned about property rights.
This is One Southern Indiana in a rotten, venom-ridden nutshell, and if you're an independent small business owner making membership tithes to 1Si in the hope that some day, some of it might trickle down to you, cutting your wrists now would have the benefit of saving a great deal of time.
To repeat: Green does a great job here. Can we have a reporter yet?
SUNDAY EDITION | Louisville business group revives push for pedestrians, cyclists on K&I Bridge, Marcus Green (WDRB)