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$15.1M Construction Project Halted for a Single Spider

San Antonio spokesman for the Texas Department of Transportation,  Josh Donat has said that a planned $15.1 million highway underpass project begun in April is now “highly unlikely...we’ve been asked to avoid further excavation if we can.” The project, which is currently underway will have to be halted. Why? Because of a spider. 

This single spider, the eyeless Braken Bat Cave Meshweaver, was found living underground at the construction site last week. It is only the second time this spider has ever been seen, the first being 30 years ago. It was added to the federal protection list in 2000

This one endangered spider was located at the construction site, which means that the project to connect Texas 151 and Loop 1604 is on hold indefinitely. While the project is being redesigned to stay away from any areas where the spider might live, the state (along with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the Federal Highway Administration) has decided to release the contractor. Unfortunately, Donat says “There’s no timeline at all right now.”

Residents of one of the most congested areas of San Antonio now have no hope for reprieve any time soon because of this dime-sized arachnid. We know it’s important to be good stewards of our planet. Are we going to overlook this boon in money and jobs to the local economy for one spider? With so much at stake for humans, isn’t this going a little too far?

Martha Young

This is going too far for sure. First, I imagine a few people are out of a job right now because of this - how are they to support their families. Our values in this country are totally skewed when a spider is more important than humanbeings. I beleive we should do everything we can to protect our environment and everything in it but I think we need a little common sense.

Turner Foster

I can agree with that to an extent, Pat, but there's no reason to cast judgment on someone just for being passionate about what they believe in. I know that it may be only one spider, but to those that are in support of the halt in work, that one spider represents a species that, as mentioned, has only been seen twice in recorded history. Since I am personally not effected by the construction, I don't believe I should offer an opinion or stance, since it would be a waste of potentially constructive thought on my end, but I have no problem voicing my opinion that judgment as a whole is repressive to the ideas of freedom.

phodges61's picture

I guarantee you some construction worker didn't say, "Oh look! Why that's an "Eyeless Braken Bat Cave Meshweaver! We'd better halt work!" No instead the environmentalist whacko's were harassing the project already looking for any reason to shut it down!