SORTA defends enormous misuse of public monies
Usually, true stories about wasted government money and misplaced priorities are better than we could make up. This is one of those. Right under our noses, our elected officials have squandered more than $42 million on a subway station that has sat empty for six years, and has no prospects for use in the coming five years. Former Congressman Luken has shined the spotlight on this profligate waste of public monies, including asking for an investigation by Ohio’s Inspector General.
In 2003, with great fanfare, elected officials from City, County, State and Federal governments cut the ribbon on the Cincinnati Riverfront Transit Center – extending from Great American Ballpark to Paul Brown Stadium on Cincinnati’s riverfront. The project is a 316,628 square foot leviathan designed to serve 500 buses per hour, heavy or light rail trains, complete with tiled floors and walls, mosaic murals and elevators, escalators, restrooms and staircases. The public can get a glimpse of the Center from the out-of-place and unused “subway-style” entrances near Great American Ballpark and the other waste of money on Cincinnati’s Riverfront – the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center. Photos of the white elephant are here.
Today, due to construction defects, disuse and leaks, the structure is falling into disrepair and rusting. Since its opening it has hardly ever been used, and yet SORTA officials defend its construction. Exactly what evidence would they need to concede this project is an abject failure?
COAST suggests ever so gently that maybe, just maybe, this type of spending orgy could be averted if the current anti-boondoggle Charter Amendment had been in place before 2002.