But then there is the other article from the Denver Post. It states that the cost projections are all messed up by the global economic slowdown. Sure sales taxes have taken a hit, but so have commodity prices.
Instead, Calongne says, the debate centers less on transportation and more on lost opportunities for development near rail stations. "If there's no train, then a train won't go through downtown Louisville or the south part of Westminster," she said. "That's what this is about." Officials agree that's a big part of the push for rail. "
FasTracks allows all of us to develop our urban centers," said Louisville Mayor Chuck Sisk. "Transit-oriented development keeps our population densities in the core areas," he said. "We made choices not to expand and grow our population outward, and this transit piece is the important part of growing and developing our cities."
Pointing to the volatility of some commodity prices, Heimowitz presented a chart showing the price of steel (using an index cost of 100 for January 2001 as the base) bouncing from 252 last year to a high of 507 in June before tumbling to 384 in September, 257 in October and 144 on Nov. 14. "People were completely apoplectic about the price of steel four months ago," Heimowitz said, "and here we are, it's a whole other world."If it continues this way, it could be a real boost to the program and lower construction costs, especially since fuel costs are down. And a stimulus boost would probably help even more, getting these projects moving faster. So what will happen? It would be nice to say that things will continue to go down, but we know that is bad for the overall economy. Perhaps some simple balance of the two would be best. But for now, we'll have to wait and see the true effect.