Learning nothing from the the Ohio River Bridges Project, INDOT bureaucrats refuse to conduct a formal economic impact study in the run up to Sherman Minton project work.

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Japan or Germany could do it in six months.

Well then, screw the state’s project team.

Join me in wondering how many of them have any experience owning indie businesses.

As with Gahan’s crack team of paper-shufflers, assuredly none do.

Businesses concerned about Sherman Minton Bridge project, by Brooke McAfee (Tom May All of the Time)

NEW ALBANY — As developers consider options for the rehabilitation of the Sherman Minton Bridge, many community members are concerned about how closures and disruption in traffic flow will affect local business.

Southern Indiana business owners and stakeholders met with Sherman Minton Bridge project representatives Wednesday at Wick’s Pizza in New Albany to learn about the upcoming bridge renovations and to voice their opinions on proposed plans for closure. The project team has been gathering community feedback as it considers its construction approach …

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 … the project team is looking at overall community impact as it considers the options, but it is not conducting a formal business study. State Rep. Ed Clere, R-New Albany, said he would like to see a formal assessment of how the bridge closures could disproportionately affect certain business owners, such as a survey of downtown business owners who rely heavily on Louisville customers. He said the impact will vary greatly depending on the type of business.

“[The 2011 closure] was a very sudden thing we couldn’t anticipate,” he said. “Here, we can anticipate and we obviously are … but if we are looking at 2011 as an experience, we had businesses who did better as a result of the bridge closure, because to be quite blunt, there were folks who discovered downtown New Albany. They couldn’t go to Frankfort Avenue, they couldn’t go to Bardstown Road easily, and suddenly they were finding that there were some incredible restaurants and shops in downtown New Albany. There were other businesses that went out of business because of the bridge closures.”

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