Digging Up Holes and Filling Them Back In

highway to nowhereNearly forty years after the Baltimore city government eviscerated a neighborhood for a massive, abortive highway project, it decides to build a parking lot instead:

Lillian Duckett was a teenager when Baltimore officials bought the Mulberry Street home she shared with her eight siblings, parents and grandmother, and then tore it down.

The Ducketts were among the nearly 3,000 residents who were uprooted from their predominantly black West Baltimore neighborhood four decades ago to make way for a highway project to connect Interstate 70 with I-95. But construction stopped nearly as soon as it began, leaving a concrete bridge that rises near the site of the Ducketts’ former home and ends abruptly in a grassy slope.

Duckett sat in her current home, which overlooks the ill-fated project, on Friday as Gov. Martin O’Malley, Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake and other officials announced a $2.5 million plan to demolish the hulking dead end that has become known as “The Highway to Nowhere.”

All of this being funded by Obama’s barrels of stimulus cash, none of which will ease the pain and resentment of being victimized by eminent domain abuse all those years ago.  For the crime of destroying hundreds of people’s homes, not to mention a significant part of their economic activity, this seems like a pathetic Band-Aid.

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