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seicer

[Seattle] Build the viaduct or the funds will be diverted to 520...

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http://blog.seattlepi.nwsource.com/seattle...ives/110579.asp

Originally posted with commentary by Robert Cruickshank on the newsgroup, misc.transport.road --

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My commentary --

"Increasing mass-transit usage will greatly mitigate the effect of a closed north-south artery [during construction of the new alternative]. The era of building new highways through urbanised areas is pretty much dead."

To the design -- "One constructed similar to the West Side Highway in New York City would be quite nice. Three to four-lanes of through traffic, with turning bays would adequately handle traffic except, perhaps, at the core rush hour times (two or three hours per day). Wide multi-use sidewalks and paths for bicyclists and pedestrians on both sides, separated by decorated, raised planters would create a nice visual divide between automobiles and the pedestrians. A raised planter for the median strip would be nice as well. This would also have the effect of keeping pedestrians from jay-walking, and crossing only at designated crosswalks."

"Besides the transportation bonuses I listed above, it would open up views for new high-rise developments. The demolition of San Francisco's viaduct along the waterfront opened up prime real-estate, much like what the demolition of the West Side Highway viaduct did for the ghetto-warehouse district on the west side. Louisville's 8664 plan is also very similar."

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If I understand what's going on...it seems that Chris Gregoire said they would put the decision in the hands of the voters. Then she turned around and killed the tunnel option anyway. Nickels then tried to throw together a discount tunnel option which was practically ignored...but has been having private meetings with Gregoire anyway.

I don't know. A vote would have been nice but a vote doesn't mean as much as you might think. The voters said yes to the monorail three times before it was killed.

A tunnel would have been cool. There were pipe dreams of turning the area under the current viaduct into a park...that wouldn't have happened. There might have been some small amount of park space but the land there would have been worth far too much and would have immediately filled with condo/mixed use buildings.

So now they say rebuild the viaduct in a side by side fashion instead of a stack? I guess that sounds fine if that's how they must do it. I just wish that Seattle could somehow not have two highways running through downtown. Downtown Portland sure in nice with I-5 having been moved across the river. I-405 does go through downtown but it isn't in an area like the Seattle waterfront. Portland also doesn't have the traffic that Seattle does so that's perhaps not a fair comparison.

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"Increasing mass-transit usage will greatly mitigate the effect of a closed north-south artery [during construction of the new alternative]. The era of building new highways through urbanised areas is pretty much dead."

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You are wrong. Can you put trucks, shipments, etc. on transit? Nope. Understand what 99 actually does before proposing solutions.

What really ticks me off is that they lied to us about the gas tax. I wish we could recall politicians and bureaucrats who lie before elections.

The voters also voted for a free monorail in at least one of those elections. The monorail was a pipe dream. If the tunnel went for a vote, it would fail, because they would have to show where the $ is coming from. A new viaduct would fail too. I think it is about time to just give up on Seattle and focus those $s elsewhere.

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You cannot put trucks on transit, but you can serve the industries by rail, and an existing line runs to the major industrial sites with appropriate spurs and sidings available to handle the load. Inter-modal centers can shift goods from rail to local trucks using standard overseas freight containers, now more commonly utilized than in the past.

This novel idea worked great in the past and has been demonstrated nationwide. For instance, my parents live five minutes from a major Norfolk Southern mainline. In order to reduce the amount of tractor-trailers on the highway system, which is quite strained, an inter-modal center is being constructed that will allow goods from barge (the property is adjacent to the Ohio River) and rail to be transported to tractor-trailers for more localized transport.

It makes economical sense.

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Okay so now the paper quotes Gregoire as saying that the upcoming vote will 'matter'. Also Nickels is supporting the tunnel on his website, though he was told to remove the support from the site for ethics reasons.

So...what? Are the people voting for the tunnel or not? Does the vote matter or not?

Only time will tell.

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