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Originally published Monday, December 18, 2006 at 12:00 AM

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UW wants state to compensate it for inconvenience

The University of Washington wants the state to pay for new landscaped walkways, parking garages and traffic cops — even make some...

Seattle Times staff reporter

The University of Washington wants the state to pay for new landscaped walkways, parking garages and traffic cops — even make some contributions to Husky athletics — to compensate for the hassles of future construction of a new 520 bridge.

Were the state to agree, these items would add hundreds of millions of dollars to a Highway 520 plan that's already underfunded by more than $2 billion.

Under a possible six-lane "Pacific Interchange" option, a huge overpass would deposit traffic between Husky Stadium and the UW Medical Center.

Before construction starts, the state Department of Transportation should build two parking garages with a total of 730 stalls, for $34 million, according to a list the UW furnished to The Seattle Times.

The UW is asking for $60 million more to make up for what university officials say would be higher costs for a proposed stadium remodel, if highway work is happening at the same time.

The UW wants something even bigger from the state: a one-mile landscaped lid over Montlake Boulevard in the event the state widens it to six lanes, and an additional 2,000-stall garage.

The university expects the state to fund a team to monitor noise and vibrations that might disrupt microsurgery or research.

The wish list also includes $3 million for years of lost ticket sales in football and basketball — presuming some fans would stay home — plus $25 million to the medical center, if some patients avoid it while nearby streets are torn up.

"The university has to continue to function successfully," said UW spokesman Norm Arkans.

"You can't have one at the expense of the other."

The state DOT has not issued a public response.

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Mike Lindblom: 206-515-5631 or mlindblom@seattletimes.com

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