Editorials

A little grease gets wheels moving on Frank Scott Parkway

Workers remove the construction signs on Frank Scott Parkway in 2008. Work has been in phases, with construction on the final 2.5-mile stretch to Scott Air Force Base expected to begin in 2018.
Workers remove the construction signs on Frank Scott Parkway in 2008. Work has been in phases, with construction on the final 2.5-mile stretch to Scott Air Force Base expected to begin in 2018. znizami@bnd.com

The intention was always to run Frank Scott Parkway all the way out to Illinois 158 next to Scott Air Force Base, but for a decade the road has made an abrupt end at Cross Street in Shiloh.

St. Clair County was locked in a land battle with property owners along the final, 2.5-mile swath. The county could only offer the appraised values. The owners wanted more.

Riding to the rescue was the Village of Shiloh by using $32,800 in tax increment financing money to seal the deals with the last of the property owners. Their action will finally get the earth moving and the concrete poured.

Shiloh stands to gain as the road extends another straight shot to the base and closes in on a second interchange to Interstate 64. Economic and residential development will follow, as it has elsewhere along Frank Scott Parkway.

Tax increment financing money is intended for infrastructure needs, so this seems to be the right use for that money. Putting those dollars to a public benefit is much preferable to enriching a few select businesses seeking an unfair advantage over a community’s loyal merchant base.

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