Itís been almost a month since Highway 40 closed between Ballas Road and Interstate 170. We survived, the crisis never appeared, life goes on. What might have been a major interruption is just a modest inconvenience.
Itís time to give some credit for averting disaster. First, letís hear it for the state and local government officials. They developed procedures that are working splendidly. They saw the future and planned effectively for it. Guess what? The areaís numerous governments can work effectively together.
Next, three cheers for the local media. They played a terrific Paul Revere, sounding the alarm so persistently that even the most inattentive were alerted to the closing. With words, charts, and pictures, they were all over the story. They were both informative and helpful.
Third, Metro ó an outfit that could use a little good news. The regionís public transit agency adroitly tweaked its system to provide more alternatives for commuters. Let the buses and trains roll.
Fourth, a tip of the hat to local employers. They have reshaped the workplace with flex time and work at home options, all intended to lessen the commuting load.
But most of all, St. Louisans, congratulate yourselves. You are remarkably adaptive, finding other ways from getting from here to there and back again. You have faced the obstacle and finessed it. St. Louisans may not always embrace change but, when it comes, they can and do know how to handle it.
(The opinions expressed are not necessarily those of St. Louis Public Radio.)
Terry Jones is Professor of Political Science at the University of Missouri - St. Louis.