The Times recommends
Yes to the rebuild, no to the tunnel
The much-maligned, much-ballyhooed March 13 election over the preferred way to replace the Alaskan Way Viaduct is upon us. The smart...
The much-maligned, much-ballyhooed March 13 election over the preferred way to replace the Alaskan Way Viaduct is upon us. The smart thing to do with a flawed ballot is make the most of it. Vote for the rebuilt elevated roadway and eliminate the overpriced tunnel from further consideration.
In complex ballot-speak, that means, vote "no" on Advisory Measure No. 1, against the tunnel, and "yes" on Advisory Measure No. 2 for the rebuilt elevated highway. Our region has been riven by heated debate about a viaduct replacement. It does matter how we vote.
The elevated rebuilt roadway is the common-sense proposal for commerce and motorists. It will keep cars, trucks and other vehicles moving. The plan would require the shortest amount of time for full closure — six to 18 months, compared with three-plus years for the tunnel.
The in-vogue vote is double "no" to force transportation planners to proceed with something altogether different — perhaps a third option not on the ballot, the surface-transit idea.
That has considerable appeal but voters should be careful not to idealize something they know little about.
The lure of this idea, so far, is overstated. Voting "no" twice doesn't necessarily lead to the surface option. It may also mean voters are angry about the way this debate has spiraled out of control, or that voters are unhappy the City Council refused to place one simple, either-or question on the ballot.
There is nothing environmentally hip about a bunch of cars and trucks emitting fumes while backed up on Interstate 5 or jamming the waterfront roadway.
Gov. Christine Gregoire says the surface option will jam Interstate 5 and the north-south streets of our narrowly shaped city to an unacceptable degree. If capacity on Alaskan Way is expanded enough, the surface street turns into a speedway a la Aurora Avenue North. Even with overpasses, the city may feel less connected to its waterfront with that option.
The average citizen's budget for this roadway is not unlimited. No acceptable plan exists for paying cost overruns on the tunnel, and there will be overruns.
Vote for the elevated roadway — "yes" on Advisory Measure No. 2 — and help get the tunnel out of the debate.
Sam and Sara Lucchese create handmade pasta out of their kitchen-garage adjacent to their Ballard home. Here, they illustrate the final steps in making pappardelle pasta.
(The Associated Press) Fuel rules get support A Consumer Federation of America survey conducted in April found that a large majority of Americans R...
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