Follow us:

Northwest Voices

Seattle Times letters to the editor

February 17, 2009 at 4:00 PM

Bel-Red re-envisioned

Mike Siegel / The Seattle Times Mike Siegel / The Seattle Times

An aerial photo of Bellevue shows the Bel-Red corridor, between Bel-Red Road and Highway 520. The corridor, a 900-acre section of the city, is expected to be rezoned to allow dense urban development around future light-rail service.

A 21st century vision

for transportation, growth

Editor, The Times:

Last fall, even in the midst of a giant economic downturn, our region wisely chose to make a massive $17.8 billion investment in a 21st-century transportation vision because of the benefits we knew it would bring.

One of the touted benefits was the large amount of private capital investment the light-rail stations would bring in, and it looks like developers in the Bel-Red corridor got the message (“Re-envisioning Bel-Red,” page one, Feb. 13).

In November, we loudly called for a new vision for transportation in our region. But like most bold, forward-looking visions, it can’t be done with one vote for one mass-transit expansion. We also need to make sure those light-rail stations are surrounded with the high-density communities that will maximize the investment.

Bellevue is allowing higher-density zoning around these four new light-rail stations, but allowing and requiring are entirely different animals. The Transit-Oriented Communities bill (HB 1490) will ensure that the $17.8 billion investment we’re making over the next 15 years is maximized by calling for high-density communities around our shiny new stations. Let’s not just hope they get it right; let’s get it right.

— Kat Scott, Seattle

Streetcars would be better

The Seattle Times endorsement of the East Link proposal because of its role in enhancing development of the Bel-Red area is absurd.

The reality is that streetcars similar to those used near Lake Union would be far more suitable for that area. They would be more aesthetically appealing, allow more-frequent stops and avoid the need for any large station.

Sound Transit’s current plans for East Link light rail will be an environment disaster along the route chosen through Bellevue and will doom the vast majority of Eastside residents who commute into Seattle to future gridlock because of loss of bridge center section.

— Bill Hirt, Bellevue

Comments | More in Bellevue, Eastside, Transportation

COMMENTS

No personal attacks or insults, no hate speech, no profanity. Please keep the conversation civil and help us moderate this thread by reporting any abuse. See our Commenting FAQ.



The opinions expressed in reader comments are those of the author only, and do not reflect the opinions of The Seattle Times.


The Seattle Times

The door is closed, but it's not locked.

Take a minute to subscribe and continue to enjoy The Seattle Times for as little as 99 cents a week.

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Subscriber login ►
The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription upgrade.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. For unlimited seattletimes.com access, please upgrade your digital subscription.

Call customer service at 1.800.542.0820 for assistance with your upgrade or questions about your subscriber status.

The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. Subscribe now for unlimited access!

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Activate Subscriber Account ►