"A popular government without popular information, or the means of acquiring it, is but a Prologue to a Farce or a Tragedy; or, perhaps both. Knowledge will forever govern ignorance; and a people who mean to be their own governors must arm themselves with the power knowledge gives."


Friday, February 7, 2014

Scottsboro City Council Work Session - Presentation on Save B.B. Comer Bridge in a 2 Part Video - Do we have VISION?

VIDEO of the Save the B.B. Comer Bridge - Chattanooga Times Free Press

Nesting Ospreys on B.B. comer Bridge
The B.B. comer Bridge as it stands today. (Photo's courtesy of the Save the B.B. Comer Bridge Group.)
Monday's City Council Work Session had 1 item on the agenda, A presentation by Ms. Julie Bowers of the "Workin Bridges Group" of the N. Skunk River Greenbelt Association in Grinnel, Iowa, link: http://www.skunkriverbridge.org/the-project.html
B.B. Comer Bridge Foundation link: http://comerbridge.org/news-updates.html
B.B. Comer Bridge History ( http://comerbridge.org/index.html )
The B.B. Comer Bridge was opened in 1930 as a toll bridge. The act authorizing a series of 15 memorial toll bridges, located throughout the state of Alabama, was authorized during the term of Governor Bibb Graves in 1927. The State Toll Bridge Act authorized the State of Alabama to issue bonds to finance the construction of 15 such spans on the states waterways.

The B.B. Comer Bridge officially opened on August 2, 1930. On September 29. 1936, the tolls were lifted,the bridge could be crossed without cost.

The B.B. Comer Bridge is the last of the 15 memorial toll bridges -- the other 14 have been demolished.

WWIC interview: http://radio.securenetsystems.net/radio_player_large.cfm?stationCallSign=WWIC-OD
"B.B. Comer Bridgein Pictures" You Tube Video by Arnold Wheeler
Part 1 

Part 2 VIDEO


VISION or DESTRUCTION Is this how the community wishes to remember this great icon of progress built during the Great Depression?
 It is true, not all of our history can be saved nor should it be saved. But the real question before the community and the State of Alabama, is this piece of history worth saving and does the community and the state have the will and vision to save the bridge and turn it into a tourist attraction which can be sustained over time?

Maybe the greatest question for our community - do we have VISION?  Without vision, our community begins to die. Look around the square in Scottsboro, there is a distinct lack of vision. This was not always true as there was a wonderful plan for the revitalization of the downtown area. The vision was lost, planning was cast aside for immediate gratification. Now the downtown area suffers from urban blight. It does not have to be this way!

Planners and those responsible for economic development have lost their vision.  Instead, our economic developers have depended on projects such as the TVA nuclear plant at Bellefonte for our future. They have became complacent and short sighted. Our industrial parks remain empty, no vision except for personal gain of a very few.

If the bridge is to be saved there must be a definitive business/financial plan brought forward demonstrating the sustainability of the bridge preservation effort over time. A developer or the state government must come forward to "save the bridge" if it is to be saved. The local county and city government cannot afford the project. Unfortunately, some politicians are not being honest with local citizens wanting to save the bridge, some politicians are obviously more concerned about their reelection and their personal vanity.  What is the answer? Vision - Planning and Financing, vision must come first.

                                      Or is this the VISION?
These are the possibilities if there is VISION for our future.

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