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Northwest Voices

Seattle Times letters to the editor

January 15, 2009 at 4:00 PM

Northwest flooding

Let the rivers flood

The recent flooding in Puget Sound should serve as a wake-up call to our region’s citizens and elected officials. Because so much of the problem arises when buildings occupy floodplains and local governments want development, Olympia needs to step in.

Let’s try moving away from flood-prone areas by restricting new development in the 200-year or 400-year floodplain instead of the 100-year floodplain. Then let’s move existing people and buildings out of harm’s way. That let’s the rivers flood, which they are going to do anyway, more safely.

We could also reject Congress’ and the Corps of Engineers’ dams and levees, relying instead on getting people and buildings out of the way. Levees are great until they fail. Just ask any resident of New Orleans or Centralia.

— Bernie Fischlowitz-Roberts, Seattle

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