Louisville Wrestles With Freeway Dilemma

Critic Michael Kimmelman, fresh back from Louisville's Idea Festival, questions why that quickly emerging city wants to double down on a new freeway expansion through its downtown while other progressive cities are tearing theirs down.
September 26, 2012, 1pm PDT | Matthew Kuhl
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Louisville is intent on constructing a new bridge and expanding an existing interstate freeway along its waterfront with the Ohio River. A move that runs counter to the prevailing wisdom of freeway removal and increased mass transit as a means of attracting people and talent to cities.

Michael Kimmelman laments the 1950s era line of thinking that has many of the region's civic leaders, "[p]ursuing a plan that would, in part, enlarge the downtown highways and construct a second bridge next to the Kennedy. It would even eat up some of a park designed by Frederick Law Olmsted, of Prospect Park and Central Park fame. Louisville is a car city with auto plants and a big investment in the auto industry... The proposal, so clearly out of step, has been met with grass-roots opposition and is now in the courts, tied up over issues about financing, tolls and the environment."

Thanks to Matthew W. Kuhl

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Published on Wednesday, September 26, 2012 in New York Times
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