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Northwest Voices

Seattle Times letters to the editor

June 15, 2014 at 4:04 PM

Traffic gridlock: Seattle will pay for viaduct decision

A two-vehicle crash in Seattle on East Marginal Way South near South Nevada Street led to the closure of Highway 99 for hours Tuesday. (HEATHER TRIMM / THE SEATTLE TIMES)

I read with interest the story in The Seattle Times concerning the traffic gridlock resulting from an automobile collision south of the West Seattle Bridge that tied up traffic for well over six hours last Tuesday [“City’s layout can put Seattle one crash away from gridlock,” Local News, June 11].

Without going into whether the event could have been better managed, I was struck by the comments of Richard Sheridan, the Seattle Department of Transportation spokesman, who said, “Once we have a failure on Interstate 5 or State Route 99, there is no silver-bullet solution. There just isn’t sufficient capacity on any of the area’s surface streets.”

That’s probably why Seattle decided to knock down the six-lane viaduct and replace it with a four-lane tunnel. To paraphrase that noted philosopher, Forrest Gump, when it pertains to traffic, Seattle “is as stupid does.”

Robie G. Russell, Bainbridge Island

Comments | More in Transportation | Topics: congestion, highway 99, Interstate 5

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