It was not the right idea, how is it the right idea to start from scratch and setting yourself back for years? This only works, if you have a team and Andrew said, he just made it as a portfolio work, so he can get hired, so sooner or later it will have gotten abandoned anyway.Andrew had the right idea with Torque6. T2D's codebase has Melv's historically clean, well-documented coding style and although it was outdated from day one and is outclassed by other 2D engines, was a real pleasure to work with so I'd support a move in that direction. I'd even go as far as to say a change of this magnitude is long overdue.
Regarding developing the engine, we could at least need some people in the steering committee handling the pull requests and stuff, the job of the committee was never intended to do all the work, they were just supposed to do things like pull requests and guide the direction the engine will develop.
So who volunteers for that position? It is not very efficient to have JeffR doing engine development AND handling all the pull requests.
So who volunteers?
It's the right idea for all of the reasons Jeff listed and more. T3D is a messy, cobbled together patchwork of code (some of which is 15+ years old at this point) with varying styles, semantics, and performance. It's done its job but it's a shaky foundation on which to build anything modern. Andrew understood that and regardless of his reasons for developing Torque6, the design behind it was sound.
To be clear, you wouldn't be starting from scratch, you'd be leveraging T2D as a clean(er) starting point and bringing in the improvements T3D has made to the core engine plus the stuff Jeff has been writing about for 2+ years. The alternative is keeping the current codebase and watching as Jeff and one or two other active contributors burn themselves out for the next two years trying cram new systems onto old ones and refactoring as they go.
And you're right - the steering committee (or the two people still active on it) shouldn't be handling all of the engine development. They're not doing everything right now, but close to it. The only way to improve that situation is to get more people using the engine but that requires a friendlier first experience so that when new people try the engine it works out of the box without some of the current hassles.