American RadioWorks: Bridge to Somewhere

Sun, 07/05/2009 - 10:00pm
CCC workers constructing a road, 1933.
Franklin D. Roosevelt Library and Museum
President Barack Obama’s plan to create jobs by building infrastructure invites comparisons to another president. Franklin Delano Roosevelt tried to manufacture jobs by building bridges, sewers, schools and even ski jumps. Historians disagree about how much FDR’s New Deal programs eased the Depression in the short term. Although, in the long term, the structures they built have had a profound effect on the country’s economy. American RadioWorks: Bridge to Somewhere airs on Sunday, July 5 at 10 p.m. on AM 1370/ HD 91.5-2.

Nearly every county in America contains at least one structure built by the New Deal. This documentary, produced in cooperation with public television’s blueprint America project and, takes us to the mountains of Vermont, where a ski industry was founded by FDR’s Civilian Conservation Corps and is now a thriving tourist draw. It also takes us to the Pacific Northwest, where New Deal dams on the Columbia River transformed an entire region. The program combines colorful historical tape with modern-day reporting to create an entertaining and thoughtful look at the long reach of the New Deal.