A lot of people -- even Dallasites -- are surprised to learn that Dealey Plaza (where Kennedy was shot) used to be underwater. Before the public works projects of the 1930s, that area was the basin of the Trinity River. That part of the river was picked up and moved west about a mile or so. Not only was that the Trinity River basin, much of what is now Downtown Dallas is technically floodplain, and would be more than a teeny bit wet if we had one of those 100-year floods everyone always talks about.
One major bone of contention in local politics and city planning is that between the high levees of the current Trinity riverbed, local officials have been trying to do billion$ in development of parks and recreation/entertainment areas. We've voted, people have argued, and it's looked to me like the city government is going full-tilt-boogie with it all whether we like it or not. Add to that the fact that they are trying to build a taxpayer-funded billion $$$ hotel attached to our convention center and without us having the ability to vote yea or nay and a lot of folks in Dallas are seeing red.
Now our local gubmint is barreling ahead with plans for this Trinity river development and feigning ignorance of reports from the Army Corps of Engineers. Here's an article on the looming disaster from the free local weekly Dallas Observer.
I suppose if the federal government makes a habit of throwing money down holes, why should it surprise that the locals do so as well? On the other hand, it's fun to imagine that at least on a local level, there would be some accountability brought to bear.
Sometimes, less is more. How about for once we stop spending when a project looks like a disaster-in-the-making? I suppose that would make too much sense, though, wouldn't it?