Good morning all,

A routine story earlier this week on a $12.7 million contract for a highway project at a crowded intersection raised some eyebrows.

The contract awarded to Middletown-based Mumford and Miller aims to improve a busy intersection at Routes 40 and 72 in Bear. (See story below)

According to DelDOT, the contractor will rebuild the intersection of Route 40 and provide features that aim to reduce back-ups.

What had people going on social media was a projected 2.8-year timeline for the project.

Comments ranged from why Delaware roads are always under construction (many are a half-century old) to why such a project would take so long.

These lengthy projects are nothing new. DelDOT has to deal with the poor land use planning of the past and traffic volumes that are blowing out earlier estimates.

The 72 and 40 areas include commercial and residential development with few buffers and a need to keep roads open to developments and businesses.

Also lurking in the background is the likelihood thatlimited funds and perhaps labor shortages make fast-track, seven-day-a-week construction too costly.

Still, two and three-fourths years is a long time. As one resident of the area noted, the Empire State Building was constructed in a year and two months.

There is also a Delaware angle. The Manhattan landmark waschampioned by Delawarean Jacob Raskob, who made a pile of money from DuPont and General Motors holdings.

Thanks to deflation that came about during the early years of the Great Depression, the cost of the building came in at about $40 million.

The low cost proved to be a good thing since it proved to be hard to find tenants for the tower during those tough times. That’s what you call long-term vision, something we lack these days.

Here’s hoping that your basement is dry and your trees stayed intact. – Doug Rainey, publisher.

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