September 22, 2006 at 12:35pm By: Mr. Wilson Posted in The Lincolnite Blog

Costs for new roads over the next 25 years are estimated at $2.43 billion. That’s an incredible chunk of change, and as I’ve said before, these big projects almost always cost much more than expected.

Is $2.43 billion doable? Well, let’s break it down. $2.43 billion over 25 years is $97.2 million per year. Lincoln is expected to grow to around 350,000 people by 2030, and we’re around 250,000 now, so let’s assume an average population of 300,000. That gives us a cost per resident of $324 per year. That doesn’t sound completely unreasonable, does it? Except that the Wilson family of three now owes nearly $1,000 per year for new roads alone, and we haven’t even begun to pay for road maintenance, schools, or any of the hundreds of other things our taxes need to cover.

This is obviously just a simple analysis and it leaves out a whole bunch of variables. But it’s a starting point, and I think it illustrates nicely that we need to start planning soon for these costs. This is not a discussion Lincoln can afford to put off.

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