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posted by Fnord666 on Sunday April 15, @10:37PM   Printer-friendly
from the building-bridges-to-space dept.

A bridge linking the Kennedy Space Center to the mainland needs replacement:

In fast-track fashion, traffic engineers hope to finish design work on a future replacement State Road 405 bridge across the Indian River by January 2021.

The aging bridge serves as a critical corridor linking the mainland with Kennedy Space Center and Cape Canaveral Air Force Station — and the bridge must shoulder heavyweight spacecraft payloads and similar freight.

But by 2021, the drawbridge could prove unsafe for spacecraft and other heavy cargo, a NASA engineering study determined. Bridge replacement could cost $140 million — and no construction funding has been earmarked yet, said Bob Kamm, Space Coast Transportation Planning Organization executive director.

Traffic in and around the Kennedy Space Center has increased massively in recent years.

Congressmen want more money to upgrade the facilities at Kennedy Space Center, as well as to provide for the Space Launch System and Orion projects:

A letter sent last month by U.S. Rep. Bill Posey, the Rockledge Republican who sits on the House Space Subcommittee, and co-signed by 10 other members of Florida's delegation, urges $557 million for the exploration ground systems improvements in the 2019 federal budget, and another $17 million for other construction. It also calls for $150 million in 2019 to build a new mobile launcher that could support the SLS rocket for 40 years, a recent NASA policy direction change from plans now seen as problematic to retrofit the current mobile launcher. The letter also calls for another $2.15 billion for the SLS rocket development, and $1.35 billion for the final Orion crew vehicle development.


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  • (Score: 2, Funny) by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 16, @12:12AM (2 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 16, @12:12AM (#667417)

    Give Florida to Cuba.

    • (Score: 3, Funny) by bob_super on Monday April 16, @04:40PM (1 child)

      by bob_super (1357) on Monday April 16, @04:40PM (#667691)

      "Hey Commies! Here is a whole bunch of flat land exposed to hurricanes, and soon to be 20% under water. It's populated with old people, gangs, gators, occasionally Spring Breakers, aging infrastructure, and a few hundred square miles dedicated to wasting space money"
      "Pendejo, if you wanted us to collapse so bad, why didn't you think of that move before the Bay of Pigs?"

      • (Score: 2) by DannyB on Monday April 16, @06:21PM

        by DannyB (5839) Subscriber Badge on Monday April 16, @06:21PM (#667743)

        You forgot about the sink holes. And I don't mean the garbage disposal in the kitchen sink.

        The water from the global warming floods will be swallowed by the sync holes.

  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by qzm on Monday April 16, @12:38AM (10 children)

    by qzm (3260) on Monday April 16, @12:38AM (#667427)

    Do I even need to say it?
    I know, we all love what NASA was..

    But now it is this, with a small group of actual engineers and scientists being held as captive ransom by a huge bureaucracy of pork peddlers.
    I doubt there is any solution, the people, companies and politicians involved are just too addicted to the flow of pork.

    And this is just more examples. suddenly a committee somewhere has an idea for more pork, reports appear of problems that didnt exist last week,
    solutions to futureproof things using ridiculous estimates of requirements over foolish timescales are used to push budgets as far as they will do,
    delivery will fail horrible, and end up costing several times the original crazy estimates.
    And in the end, no one will be held responsible at all, and it will just keep happening.

    Fire ALL the people involved in the management of the SLS project and its infrastructure, they have proven their incompetence in public service.

    • (Score: 4, Interesting) by Snotnose on Monday April 16, @12:53AM

      by Snotnose (1623) on Monday April 16, @12:53AM (#667436)

      I wanna mod you a troll. I really really do. You don't know how much I want to mark you a troll.

      But I'm afraid you're right, which is sad.

      --
      The journey of a thousand miles may begin with the first step being in a pile of doggie doo.
    • (Score: 5, Informative) by takyon on Monday April 16, @01:15AM (1 child)

      by takyon (881) Subscriber Badge <{takyon} {at} {soylentnews.org}> on Monday April 16, @01:15AM (#667442) Journal

      NASA is not responsible for SLS. Congress is. Even if there are SLS proponents at NASA, it's hard to tell if they are genuine or just spouting the party line. Furthermore, Congress approves more money for SLS+Orion than they ask for and has mandated certain missions.

      NASA isn't really building SLS, a dream team of the usual Beltway bandits are. So it doesn't make sense to blame them for it. Something like JWST's ballooned budget is more their fault, but at least that item will be incredibly useful for mankind.

      Killing SLS will require a lot of luck (SLS delays) and grit from SpaceX and possibly Blue Origin. Despite Falcon Heavy being fairly competitive with the SLS Block 1, excuses have been made and they are sticking to them. BFR on the other hand can't be shrugged off and is a total SLS killer, and is intended to fly astronauts instead of Falcon Heavy. New Glenn adds another heavy lifter to the mix that could be launching before BFR. Blue Origin's rocket engines could also be featured in ULA's cheaper Vulcan rocket.

      --
      [SIG] 10/28/2017: Soylent Upgrade v14 [soylentnews.org]
      • (Score: 5, Funny) by mhajicek on Monday April 16, @02:20AM

        by mhajicek (51) Subscriber Badge on Monday April 16, @02:20AM (#667464)

        So, "Fire everyone involved in SLS" largely means "Fire Congress." Good idea.

    • (Score: 2) by Fluffeh on Monday April 16, @01:16AM

      by Fluffeh (954) Subscriber Badge on Monday April 16, @01:16AM (#667445) Journal

      Oh yes, just even in the summary, the numbers are an awesome laugh:

      Bridge replacement could cost $140 million

      So... the answer is obviously:

      $557 million for the exploration ground systems improvements
      $17 million for other construction
      $150 million in 2019 to build a new mobile launcher
      $2.15 billion for the SLS rocket development
      $1.35 billion for the final Orion crew vehicle development

      $4,224 million requested based off a $140 million dollar bridge that will probably really cost $40 million to get into shape.

    • (Score: 2) by c0lo on Monday April 16, @01:34AM (5 children)

      by c0lo (156) on Monday April 16, @01:34AM (#667448)

      reports appear of problems that didnt exist last week

      Just from curiosity: how do you know the problem didn't exist last week?

      • (Score: 2) by MostCynical on Monday April 16, @03:52AM (4 children)

        by MostCynical (2589) on Monday April 16, @03:52AM (#667492)

        Well, it wasn't an SLS-related problem last week, was it?

        I've worked on projects where one, minor change request was then used to shoehorn an additional spend equivalent to 60% of the total project budget.. SLS seems to be worse - need an upgrade to anything within 100miles of SLS? Put it on the (possibly infinite) SLS budget!

        --
        (Score: tau, Irrational)
        • (Score: 4, Insightful) by c0lo on Monday April 16, @04:19AM (3 children)

          by c0lo (156) on Monday April 16, @04:19AM (#667505)

          Well, it wasn't an SLS-related problem last week, was it?

          I'm afraid it doesn't quite work that way; a problem (that you don't know about) may still exist.

          Otherwise, following the same (slightly solipsistic "if you didn't know about it, no problem exists" argument), a problem can't ever exist (because you can continue to willfully ignore it day after day, in spite of the evidence to the contrary, using "It can't be a problem, since I didn't know about this problem yesterday").

          • (Score: 1) by khallow on Monday April 16, @05:15AM (2 children)

            by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Monday April 16, @05:15AM (#667518) Journal

            a problem (that you don't know about) may still exist.

            But it remains that it wasn't an SLS problem until someone needed to attach $4 billion in pork to it.

            • (Score: 3, Insightful) by c0lo on Monday April 16, @06:27AM

              by c0lo (156) on Monday April 16, @06:27AM (#667530)

              But it remains that it wasn't an SLS problem until someone needed to attach $4 billion in pork to it.

              Do you know for sure there's a causal relationship? Can you present the evidence if so?
              (I'm not saying anything about it is or it isn't, I'm just asking because I don't know and nothing in TFS indicates as such).

            • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 16, @09:20AM

              by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 16, @09:20AM (#667555)

              Hi, Invisible Hand here. I keep trying to give those darned Commies helpful hints but they just don't listen.

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 16, @11:15AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 16, @11:15AM (#667575)

    This is who and what we have become in America. We build things. Great things. But we do not maintain them, and as such they eventually fall into disrepair and must be replaced. We are driven to create them; they must be born of our efforts. And then they are just one of many that are left to their own devices.

    We build them and use them while we ignore maintaining them. Then we replace them.

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