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Northwest Voices

Seattle Times letters to the editor

March 27, 2009 at 1:54 PM

Bridge tolls

Seattle businesses will be hurt

Who among us “average” people is going to spend an additional $5 to $10 for the “privilege” of a trip into downtown Seattle to shop or dine, only to be hit with a $10-plus parking charge, and a fee on entertainment and dining as well? [“Chopp is starting to like tunnels,” page one, March 26.]

The added cost of a toll from the Eastside to downtown is really going to hurt Seattle businesses that rely on Eastsiders coming in, especially on weekends for entertainment, dining or shopping.

To try and minimize the adverse impacts of the toll, I suggest that the state, which is considering a toll on both bridges, consider a plan that excludes tolling on Saturdays, Sundays and federal holidays.

Those who must commute via the bridges for workweek business will do so, that is a given. But to toll those who have a discretionary decision to go to the Eastside or Seattle will give serious pause to going into the city, especially as the Eastside grows its entertainment and dining options.

And think about the added cost of a Mariners game! Eighty-two home games times $7 round-trip toll. That is an additional $572 dollars on the top of your $500-$1,000 Mariners Package!

I know the city and state are hurting and looking for funding options, but what good is a new bridge to a city without any businesses? The toll is a discretionary-fun killer for the city and its sports teams.

— Art Francis, Issaquah

Comments | More in 520 bridge, Tolling

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