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Northwest Voices

Seattle Times letters to the editor

April 23, 2009 at 4:30 PM

Tunnel to replace viaduct

Washington State Department of Transportation

This digital rendering of the Alaskan Way Viaduct replacement tunnel shows stacked traffic lanes that would run roughly under First Avenue through downtown Seattle.

Encourage energy-saving transit, not traffic

Editor, The Times:

Apparently, the mayor and state Legislature aren’t getting the message [“Tunnel to take place of viaduct,” page one, April 23].

Emphasis needs to be on maintenance of the existing highway system (i.e. potholes) and alternatives to driving a car, not another highway tunnel or wider freeway.

If you are going to build a waterfront deep-bore tunnel, consider a two-lane tunnel for transit-only buses or a three-lane tunnel for HOV vehicles (carpools, van pools, buses). The difference in this plan is that it encourages more energy-efficient transportation, is affordable, and is faster and easier to build.

— Martin Nix, Seattle

Spending money to go backward

You think Seattle traffic is bad now? Wait until we replace the six-lane viaduct with a four-lane tunnel.

Then consider the fact that the current viaduct has easy on-and-off access while the tunnel will have no easy central downtown access. There will be one ramp at the south end of downtown and one at the north end. It’s easy to predict the horrific bottlenecks this will cause at both ends of town.

There is a simple wisdom somewhere that says when you rebuild a thing, the end result should be at least as good as what you’re replacing. It seems with the tunnel plan, we’re

spending a lot of money to go backward.

— Greg McBrady, Seattle

Comments | More in Traffic congestion, Viaduct

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