Dollars from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, the government’s $787 billion effort to fish our economy out of the toilet, are officially flowing down Addison Street. On July 29, pavement resurfacing work began on a stretch of Addison beginning at Clark Street, right in front of the Wrigley Field marquee, west a little over a mile to Damen Ave. As this sign (above), located on the northwest corner of Clark & Addison across from the Cubby Bear, proclaims, the recession-busting fight has reached all the way to the Friendly Confines’ front doorstep.
The Clark-to-Damen work is part of a $5 million project that includes resurfacing further westward on Addison from Kedzie Blvd. to Central Park Ave. and from Austin Ave. to Netoma Ave., according to Denise Poelsterl, office director for Chicago alderman Tom Tunney, whose 44th ward includes Wrigleyville. It’s also a drop in a $10 billion bucket of “announced” federal stimulus funds destined for Illinois during the current fiscal year (Washington is shoveling piles of money all over the place with this thing – even the Federated States of Micronesia, a U.S. territory that even the Micronesians have never heard of, are slated for $5.1 million).
Anyone who’s endured the bone-jarring, pothole slalom ride along the Addison moonscape will tell you this work is long overdue. The street looks like the army uses it for artillery practice. Poelsterl says you can thank our friends in Springfield for that.
“Alderman Tunney has been working to get Addison resurfaced since 2003,” Poelsterl told CKOW on Friday. “Addison has been in horrible condition, but there’s been no funding for this type of project. The state of Illinois has not passed a capital funding bill in seven years.”
The Addison resurfacing is scheduled for completion Nov. 15, with the majority of work done when the Cubs are out of town.
CKOW is glad to see some stimulus funds being put to work in his ‘hood, and wondering as well how he’d look in a hard hat and flourescent roadworker’s vest. He’s also wondering if some of this money might go toward repairing Milton Bradley’s swing, or his attitude.
Fun corn factoid #3: Corn is an ingredient in more than 3,000 grocery products.