Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Corridors – Tools For Economic Growth…

Corridors, or clusters of industry/innovation/creativity/retail along a certain route, are an excellent example of ways to attract business and residents to an area. The Red River Valley Research Corridor in North Dakota is a prime example of creative and forward thinking.

Currently, South Dakota is planning a corridor of its own, along I-29. This initiative aims to inter-connect our state's largest city, several research and teaching universities, and much of our population base.

Another corridor is in its nascent stages out west. The TRExpressway, part of the Ports to Plains Trade Corridor, looks to connect Mexico, the United States, and Canada. This move has the potential to accommodate a vast number of travelers through the western edge of South Dakota. This initiative, along with I-29 and I-90 systems will bolster South Dakota’s transportation infrastructure potential.

If completed, the TRE would be part of the Great Plains International Trade Corridor, a proposed four-lane divided highway system that promotes trade and transportation nationally and internationally, said Cal Klewin, director of the Expressway Association.

Read the Rest of the News Article from The Dickinson Press Here.

But recently, with budget constraints and virtually no highway money, can South Dakota afford such an endeavor? These initiatives hold an abundance of potential, but not if we are narrow in our thinking and un-sustainable in our approach.

It is important that we remember what our priorities are, and what is economically beneficial to invest our money in. Governor Rounds warned on October 23rd about the possibility of taxes going up. This is due to the fact that we aren’t reigning in our spending in good years. Subsequently, we get hit especially hard in less fortunate years. Our government should be prioritizing through a collaborative framework for sustainable development in South Dakota along all fronts.

That way, we can ensure appropriate investment in our infrastructure to allow for increased prosperity for South Dakota.

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