August 30, 2006

Big Dig Cabbie Story

This story will probably only be of interest to Bay Staters.

When I was returning from visiting Palo Alto about 5 years ago, I was on a shuttle to the airport and the cabbie was telling me all about the renovations that were happening to SFO (San Francisco International Airport). He tried to tell me that the extensive changes to SFO were the biggest construction project in the country at the time.

I stopped him.

“Ah, I’m pretty sure that’s not right.”

“No, it’s definitely the biggest project going.”

“Maybe the biggest in California. The ‘Big Dig’ in Boston is the biggest construction project going on right now.”

“What’s the ‘Big Dig?’”

“It’s the central artery/tunnel project. They’re burying a six lane highway under Boston. It’s costing billions of dollars. I think it is the largest civil construction project in the history of this country.”

He glanced back at me incredulously.

“Well, it’s just a highway. It’s not as big as an airport.”

Posted by James at August 30, 2006 12:17 PM
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Here's hoping they didn't hire Bechtel/Parsons Brinckerhoff for their project!

Posted by: Patti M. at August 30, 2006 1:09 PM

Keee-rist! Not as big as an airport?

How long is a highway? How long is an airport? Thanks. Next!

Posted by: Chuck S. at August 30, 2006 1:40 PM

He might have convinced me if they'd been burying the airport and all the runways underneath San Francisco.

Not sure how that would work, but it sure would be impressive.

Posted by: James at August 30, 2006 1:51 PM

I must say that based on my recent trips to SF we should have hired whoever did their project. It is so much easier to get in and out that airport now. The project involved reconfiguring the highway (above ground) and building a bunch of new parking garages and a tram (again above ground) between terminals. It may have involved some new terminals too. The most impressive thing is it didn't seem to be an enormous disruption or take forever.

Posted by: B.O.B. (bob) at August 30, 2006 2:10 PM

I saw the work while it was going on, it did indeed look like an enormous project. But even words like "enormous" are insufficient for to encompass the highs and lows of Boston's "Big Dig."

Posted by: James at August 30, 2006 2:17 PM

I bet he also told you that "Seatbelts are for faggots".

See, obviously airports are bigger, they use airplanes, and those are bigger than cars, therefore... airports are bigger.

You're so stupid.

Posted by: Derek at August 30, 2006 2:19 PM

Out of curiosity was the driver a Russian who drove like he was on a racetrack? I've taken cabs to the SF airport 2X recently and both times I've been afraid for my life. Literally.

Posted by: B.O.B. (bob) at August 30, 2006 3:31 PM

This was actually more like a shuttle, IIRC. But I can't remember for certain. Pretty sure he wasn't Russian, though.

Posted by: James at August 30, 2006 4:06 PM

You'd remember this guy because your life would have flashed before your eyes and you would have considered saying a prayer or three.

He was doing the Indy 500 to get us to SFO, even though we had plenty of time. Scared me quite a bit.

What are the chances of getting the same Death Race 2000 cabbie?

Posted by: Patti M. at August 30, 2006 4:13 PM

Aaah, DR2K. Haven't seen that in ages...

Posted by: Julie at August 31, 2006 9:52 AM

Wasn't stallone a ganster themed racer in that one?

Posted by: briwei at August 31, 2006 11:43 AM

Stallone and the Kung Fu guy. It was awesomely stupid and a ton of fun.

Posted by: Julie at August 31, 2006 11:52 AM

David Carradine

Posted by: Patti M. at August 31, 2006 12:25 PM

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