I thoroughly enjoyed Robert Heuer’s “Runway Inflation” piece, contained in your March 15 edition. It demonstrates that Illinois transportation planning is almost exactly like Afghan nation building: hampered by tribal factions, infighting, myopic vision, and putting short-term tribal gain before long-term, systemic considerations. The players may not wear burnooses and carry AK-47s, but their “problem-solving” methods are the same. Do we need a multinational force to get us on track?

A small example: O’Hare expansion. Where’s the intermodal analysis that compares cost/benefit of runway additions versus linking O’Hare to the Midwest High Speed Rail Network? Where does Mayor Daley stand on this issue? What’s he doing about it? What’s IDOT doing about it? The Illinois “game” seems to merely pit O’Hare against Peotone–one airport versus another–choose one! We should demand a better menu from our elected officials and public servants!

Jim Powers

Greater Rockford Transportation Coalition