Let's not forget the ultimate puppeteer, Bobby Lanier, and his minions the developers who created the sprawl first in Hickory Hill and then in Cordova. If anyone thinks that A C is not in their pockets they are delusional. Lanier has been the kingmaker for years from Bill Morris to Jim Rout and ultimately to A C Wharton. He personally picked A C to run for County Mayor.
Doesn't matter who he puts up as "Co-Chairs" they are merely their as attention getters. And, A C's record on personnel appointments is just as filled with cronies and relatives of politicians, etc. as Herenton's was, maybe worse, but no one reported it. They will all move over to high paid do nothing positions in the City when he is elected.
Don't blame this on Memphis' professional planners. The outer loop has been on the Major Road Plan since the mid 1960s. It was approved time and time again by all the politicians of the metropolitan area (including DeSoto and Fayette Counties). It was fueled by major development interests and the Major Road Committee of the Regional Chamber.
We city planners (other than the in the pocket transportation planners) recommended against sprawl at every turn. It is our local legislators and elected executives (State, County and municipal) that allowed this to happen.
Now, thanks to some crafty development interests, the local City/County planning agency has been decimated and taken over by non-planners who have not a clue as to what comprehensive planning means to our region and are as close to political hacks as we have ever had in a governmental agency.
By Jackson Baker
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