I’ve always wondered if our country will ever be done. I don’t mean perfect, just finished being built. I’m talking complete, end-of-the-line, finito, stick-a-fork-in-it done with respect to construction, especially projects such as airports and highways. It seems that as soon as one project completes, another one starts up. Logan Airport in Boston has been under construction for as long as I can remember.
This hyperactive development disorder is not isolated to public works. The food court at the nearby Burlington Mall always has at least one shop – often several – covered with a plywood blockade that announces “more choices coming soon”. Strip malls come and go more quickly than TV sitcoms. Check out your own downtown area and you’ll likely see what I’m talking about. (Superior, Nebraska appears to be immune.)
Can’t we all just take a breather? Couldn’t we give our edifice complex a rest? Wouldn’t it be nice to refrain from road closings and pardon-our-appearance-while-we-remodel messes for even a short time?
My older brother John came up with a unique idea. He suggested a construction moratorium. For one year, we simply lie to ourselves and call everything done. No new construction, no changes in traffic patterns, no dirt and dust. When the year is up, we can resume the madness.
The unusual wrinkle to his plan is that he would keep all the workers on the payroll. This would give us all a much needed break and infuse much needed money into the economy as these workers take much needed vacation breaks.
Now, I know no one is going to pay workers for not working, but I still like the idea. Not only would those workers get some time off, we all would.