People like to complain. Maybe it gives us something to do.
No matter what anyone does for a living, or how well they do it, someone else will feel at liberty to question why and how the job was completed. I tend to contribute my two cents while driving, usually as I’m trying to exit off of the interstate with vehicles flying at my bumper from the on ramp that dumps into the same lane a measly hundred feet or so behind. Whose bright idea was the cloverleaf interchange, anyway?
There’s usually logic, study and the best intentions behind what laymen interpret as annoyances, of course. This month, for example, I’ve been educated about the precision science that goes into determining which asphalt composition is appropriate for the bypass you take to work in the morning, and why the same mixture isn’t good for use on the streets in your subdivision. (The traffic load and appropriate base layers are vastly different, among other considerations.) Now I understand why the US 20 bypass in Indiana is the first local road to get slick during the early winter, and why fixing that problem would only mean an increase in cracking and potholes.
Firefighters braving flames or cascading water runoff will shoo livestock out of a smoking barn, or walk around a homeowners’ flowerbeds even though the adjacent house is now a melted, misshapen mess. What homeowners moan is, “They stepped on everything.” What I see is a crew going to considerable lengths to respect and preserve every piece of life and property they can — despite the fact that the nature of the crisis means the home is temporarily an uninhabitable mess anyhow.
The public isn’t always going to take the time to consider the planning, labor and common courtesy that goes into the construction and services that demand. But you’re maintaining those high standards anyway. Here’s one person saying thank you.
In this issue of The Municipal we’re taking a look at public buildings issues, including the rehabilitation of historic courthouses and an ambitious downtown improvement project undertaken by Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard. And check out Sarah Wright’s story: She talked to three representatives of mug shot publications. It’s a legal business idea that’s spreading across the country, but it’s causing problems for law enforcement.
We hope this month’s issue makes your job in some way easier or gives you a good idea or two. Enjoy the summer.