Today, in words I thought I’d never say

The words are: Mad props to the Shrewsbury Board of Selectmen, who opposed the through arch design of the Burns Bridge:

This resolution comes as the Board of Selectmen in Shrewsbury sent a letter to the state expressing their concern over the possibility of switching to the design advocated by many local representatives.

“The Board of Selectmen will be concerned with any change in scope of the project, which would create an elongated construction period,” wrote Board of Selectman Chairman Jim Kane in a letter to a MassDOT official. “Our business community can ill afford an additional adverse impact result from this extraordinary construction effort.”

I spoke with one reader over the phone sharing the BoS’s concerns that switching this project from a two-year to a four-year plan would really impact the businesses in Shrewsbury.  (I never thought I’d say anything supportive towards Shrewsbury, but there’s a first time for everything.)  Regular readers know what my other concerns were regarding the last-minute interruption of the project, but I don’t think I wrote about the potential business impact on the blog.

So, as you’ve likely already read, there will be a “compromise” on the Burns Bridge design; the scare quotes are there because it seems like MassDOT was pretty much able to prevail in their quest for the steel deck by adding a few ornamental features.

From the Daily Shrewsbury:

 “It will be like the Longfellow bridge in Boston,” [State Rep. Vincent] Pedone said, noting that their will be additional ornamental aspects to the design. “This will be a signature piece for Worcester and Shrewsbury. It is the same type of bridge, but it’s going to be a better looking bridge than what is there.”

I suppose now would be the time to note that it’s a bit tough to have a “signature” bridge that’s supposed to look like the uglier mini-me of an iconic bridge, but I’m just too happy to gloat at present. 

(Also, Shaun Sutner did a great job with live-tweeting the meeting.)

Let’s hope we get a bridge that enhances its surroundings, that is able to tie in to pedestrian areas, and that is ultimately better than we deserve.