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Letter to the Editor: Port Manatee Connector Boondoggle


Dear Editor,

This multi $100 million boondoggle is being pitched as a desperately needed traffic congestion relief highway to connect Port Manatee to I-75. Hello! US 41, I-275, and SR 674 already do that: All 4 lane, Service Level A (no delays) 4 lane arteries and there is the CSX railroad to transport heavy and bulky material. 

The real reason is to put an interchange on I-75 in northern Manatee County to increase the surrounding land value to allow the construction of more residential sprawl to sell to commuters to Tampa and St. Petersburg. These people will never set foot in downtown Bradenton to do any business. This exurban development will clog up I-75 so much it will need 8 lanes, just as the development East of I-75 along SRs 64 and 70 has done South of the Manatee River.

Do we really need to encourage another real estate over-supply bubble by investing in this special interest speculator dream when we have a 50 year backlog of road and public transit needs that will be kicked farther down the road to build a truck route?

Richard C. Thomas
Sarasota-Manatee Transit Group


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