Infrastructure planning is directly linked to strategic and financial planning and the economic well-being of our city.
Roads, sidewalks, transportation, and utilities are examples of infrastructure needs. Infrastructure planning is directly linked to strategic and financial planning and the economic well-being of our city. The capability to see the need and development of infrastructure years in advance is critical and we have the ability to do so. However, this administration has continually failed to do so.
This administration claims many projects are too big for Clarksville to do or not its responsibility. Yet our citizens are the ones to suffer from such reasoning. The needed East-West Corridor was awaiting the “go-ahead” to start initial route surveying and action to plan and acquire the land when Mrs. McMillan came to office eight years ago. Due to potential political turmoil and budget preparation requirements, she decided that this project was too much for the city to do and left it to the state to work.
This administration continues the illusion that the city is “moving forward” on infrastructure when reality shows we are going in the same circle.
Now eight years later, Mrs. McMillan acts as if she was always focused on the road issues with her announced “Northeast Connector” project, which she has claimed the city will now plan, fund and build….. although she has no plan on how, when or where. If you look past the political slight-of-hand, the “Connector” is the lower third of the East-West Corridor project under a different name. She claims to be “moving forward” spending time and money to study a road project that already been studied at least three times and VALIDATED every time, since 1995. This administration continues the illusion that the city is “moving forward” on infrastructure when reality shows we are going in the same circle.
The same incessant talk and inaction has afflicted other important city road projects such as the Dunbar Cave Road and Rossview Road realignment and Cardinal Lane extension. These projects have progressed at a glacial pace with little to show for years of talk and study money spent.
The issue of sidewalks on major state routes…..other Tennessee cities, have taken action ……. The question is why haven’t we?
The issue of sidewalks on major state routes is a concern, but this administration is on record that it will not build sidewalks, as it is the state’s problem to pay for them. However, it is the citizens of Clarksville who have the problem as they too often pay, with injuries and sometimes lives, for inaction by both the city and state. For years other Tennessee cities, in coordination with the state, have taken action to provide the funding and project management to secure the safety of citizens and visitors alike with needed sidewalks. The question is why haven’t we?
These are a few examples of where a city must take the lead in addressing its own infrastructure needs. The excuse that it is someone else’s problem to fund and build is not an answer, just an excuse for inaction. Does this mean we won’t seek or refuse state or federal help to work our problems? The answer is no. However, we will stop using the excuse that the problems that have been created in Clarksville are someone else’s problem to fix. As Mayor, I will take the lead in providing funding and solutions to address the infrastructure problems that are Clarksville’s.
It will take strong leadership and placing issues such as infrastructure in a priority with budget and planning to make for a better Clarksville.