A federal judge will hold off on the fate of the proposed Route 250 interchange. It's part of the Meadow Creek Parkway project.
Tuesday marked the showdown in federal court between the government and a group trying to save McIntire Park. Judge Moon listened to both sides on this debate and said he needs a few weeks before he can make a decision about the Route 250 interchange project.
The Coalition to Preserve McIntire Park wants the Federal Highway Administration (FHA) to prepare an environmental impact statement on the project. The Coalition to Preserve McIntire Park says the FHA is violating a section of the Department of Transportation Act of 1966, which says federal dollars cannot be used to fund projects that go through publicly owned land, including McIntire Park.
Coalition lawyer James Dougherty said, "The problem is when they built the bypass they sent it right through McIntire Park. There was one federal run at this park. Now we have a second proposal to run a highway through this side. That's what this agency pretty much does is run all their highways through parks and chop them up so now we are saying now is the time to draw the line."
A team of lawyers represented the federal government. In court, an FHA lawyer said the government has done its job on minimizing impact and met its burden. After the hearing, the head lawyer said she was not permitted to comment to the media.
Congress has earmarked $27 million for the interchange and the city's portion of the Meadow Creek Parkway is under construction at this point.
Wednesday, May 22 2013 7:36 PM EDT2013-05-22 23:36:22 GMT
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