Yes, state highways running on the surface always provide outstanding links to the other side. Pedestrian overpasses, anyone? Seen Aurora lately?
no fair to pierce the heart of the rant for the day
Deep breaths ECB - Seattle is ahead of NY, Boston (after a $15B Big Dig), Hong Hong, Copenhagen, Tokyo and just behind Paris.
Fnarf: Yes, state highways running on the surface always provide outstanding links to the other side. Pedestrian overpasses, anyone? Seen Aurora lately?
I'm not sure I want to get into a debate on a blog comment thread, but Fnarf, please stop deliberately misleading people. Nobody seriously advocating a surface route is advocating a surface freeway. They're talking about a slower, reduced capacity boulevard.
If you want to attack the "surface+transit" proposal for being vague on the transit part or insufficient in terms of diverting capacity, that's fair game. BTW, if I had my way, the transit in surface+transit would include light rail to West Seattle. Of course, if I had my way, we'd be building the Green Line to West Seattle now.
Is there any other list that Seattle makes with these "world class" cities?
It isn't like Aurora in North Seattle is right on one of the most beautiful natural waterfronts in the world. Yes, one has to use a cross-walk to get to Butch's gun shop. Who cares?
Even a six-lane surface highway right at downtown would be better than an elevated structure. The elevated structure amplifies the noise, spreads the pollution farther and is plain old daunting. When is the last time you've walked around or under the viaduct? It's a filth and disgusting pit, about as unwelcoming as any place imaginable. The only positive thing I can say is it kept my bicycle dry last Saturday.
Pedestrian overpasses are both natural and vastly preferable for our waterfront. Downtown is already about a story above the waterfront. It's just a matter of extending over the new surface street. Think of the amazing views they would have...
There is a pretty convincing case for keeping an elevated viaduct by the WSB interchange and industrial railroads, but by Pioneer square, it is a joke to say an elevated highway is in any way better for the city -- economically OR from an urban design point of view.
Why not, Cressona? Everyone else is "deliberately misleading people" on this topic; why can't I? And how can you be so sure that the surface "boulevard" (oh, how I love that word) is going to be in any way charming, when every indication is its going to be the opposite?
BTW, that's a terrific list of cities to be lumped in with. The horror! We're as bad as COPENHAGEN! Or NOO YO-WURK CITTY!
Pedestrian overpasses a very wrong idea if one wants to promote walking.
Almost as dumb as the now-closed (I wonder why?) UNDERPASS by Chubby & Tubby on Aurora.
Fnarf: Why not, Cressona? Everyone else is "deliberately misleading people" on this topic; why can't I? And how can you be so sure that the surface "boulevard" (oh, how I love that word) is going to be in any way charming, when every indication is its going to be the opposite?
Ah, the "everybody else is doing it" excuse. Pretty lame, but Fnarf, I have to give you credit for being honest about lying. Now, please point out where everyone else is lying.
How do I know the surface boulevard is going to be charming? Well, is it valid for me to actually use other cities as an example? Y'know, a little something called "empirical evidence"? Are there not other cities that have non-freeway surface boulevards on their waterfronts that are charming? (I pose that as a question because I don't know Embarcadero well enough.)
Of course, if you want to deliberately mislead people some more, maybe next you can claim that the moment the city puts in a surface boulevard, it's going to be Aurora Ave. North through downtown, and gas stations, porn shops, and Jack in the Boxes will spring up from nowhere.
C'mon, any overpass at the waterfront downtown would be a grade extension from first ave. Downtown is ALREADY about a story above the waterfront.
There is going to be stairs / elevators /steep grade no matter what is built thanks to the Denny regrade...
Not having to crawl under a huge concrete monstrosity -- typically dripping with greasy road grime -- would improve pedestrian usage. Let's be real here...
Who exactly is supposed to be using this park anyway? Between Alki, Golden Gardens, Magunson, and the Arboretum, it's not like there's a shortage of waterside parks in this city. The difference, of course, is that those parks are located where people live.
If there magically was this elaborate waterside downtown park that was difficult to drive to, what use would it get? Would downtown employees spend their entire lunch hour walking down to the waterside and then immediately turn back? Maybe people would hang out there before a Mariners game or something, but it's not like there's a park shortage in this city.
Pedestrian overpasses seem to be a very good idea if there is something at the end worth going to - seen the crowds on the overpass from Colman Dock to 1st and Marion lately? And given the tight space between the heads of the pedestrians and the bouncing concrete of the AWV, it's surprising anything this uninviting has the crowds on it that it does.
Now, imagine if there were another one at the Argosy dock that the Water Taxi uses in the summer. And imagine the Water Taxi running more often than, say, every half hour.
Or, and now I'm really going out on a limb here, imagine that those overpasses actually led to real, live transit stations that move people north and south. I found myself on many a crowded pedestrian overpass when I was heading to the SkyTrain in Bangkok, and there was not a bit of a view to be had.
But yeah, I'm just dreaming that S+T has a T in it.
Why why why do people keep saying the viaduct cuts the city off from the waterfront?!? You walk under the viaduct, for crying out loud! Maybe a visual eyesore, but you only have to contend with a parking area, a rarely used streetcar line, then a 4 lane road. A 6 to 8 lane boulevard plus highly-used mass transit rail line cuts a pedestrian off way more than what's there now. I'm not totally anti-S/T, but I think that "viaduct cuts the city off" is such a lame argument.
#6 golob -
The central Seattle waterfront isn't "natural." Alki Beach is natural.
Have you walked under the viaduct, particularly on a rainy day? It is a miserable experience. Dark, roaring, smelly and dripping in the filthiest grease and grime. Even if the structure was sound, it isn't a place anyone wants to dwell. I'd much rather have the road below me than above...
Am I the only one who has heard of the Denny regrade?
Wow! You couldn't be more wrong could you? Seattle is consistently ranked worst in the number of parks per capita.
Most and least parks in US cities
...at least do a quick google before embarrassing yourself.
All of that is a matter of opinion - I spent 7 years working in Pioneer Square and walked under the AWV daily and quite appreciated the opportunity to get out of the rain. I've never had the AWV drip greasy road grime on me, and I've been under it plenty.
Oh, and the AWV doesn't block views at all above 2nd Ave or so because the slope of the hill lets you see over it.
If I hear one more pompous design/architect schmuck moan and wail about how we'll never be a world class city if there's an elevated structure along the Central Waterfront I'll puke (news flash, folks - there's been one there for over 50 years, and yet the Waterfront has somehow managed to become and remain a mecca for tourists).
One big lie in today's op-ed by Dan (I'll whore for any downtown project you ask me to) Evans and Gary Locke - that a new elevated structure will be noisier than the existing one. Pure bs - plain and simple - and I'm surprised either of them would sign their names to such a clear and easily discredited misstatement of fact.
Smiles, in that survey we are not "near last"; we're in the runner up section. And that survey has very little to do with the amount of park space. Seattle has TONS of park space, and tons of waterfront park space as well. I'll bet none of the people on this blog have even BEEN to most of them. Ever been to T105 or T107 park in the Port system, along the Duwamish? You should check it out; you might learn something.
Cressona: lying, that's a good one. Cities with attractive waterfront boulevards? Can't think of too many. Cities with attractive waterfront boulevards built in the last hundred years? There are none. An attractive green waterfront is a sign of a dead city, not a living one.
The idea is to preserve water frontage OUTSIDE of the core of the city. I mean, are you going to start lamenting the lack of old growth forest at Third and Cherry next? Dense, noisy, loud, dirty cities are ESSENTIAL if you want to keep all that stuff out of the surrounding area.
You wanted examples of lying, though. Here's one: the People's Waterfront Coalition says that if we knock down the viaduct, we can restore the waterfront so that salmon will spawn there. That's a lie.
I walk along and under the viaduct a lot. I love it. I think it's a fantastic slice of urban architecture. I wouldn't want to see it in Carnation or Chelan, but it looks great downtown.
Yes, the Viaduct does "cut downtown off" from the waterfront. I'm not an urban planner - a planner could probably explain to you why people feel cut off, even by a structure that isn't solid and that you can walk under.
To me, the difference between a waterfront with a giant, double decker freeway and without one is large, and apparent.
To illustrate this point, someone put this together - I call it the Viaduct World Tour:
18 - thanks. I read that link a dozen times and couldn't see where it said that we weren't doing well with parks. Then I tried googling all sorts of phrases about parks and couldn't find anything.
"They're talking about a slower, reduced capacity boulevard."
And slower, reduced capacity traffic results in slow moving, dense traffic which results in greater tail pipe emissions at street level as engines are running when least efficent.
...Which in turn means that the Surface Transit would likely be a greater contributor to global warming than any other proposal.
Just imagine, 100 plus tractor-trailers lined up on Alaska Way, engines idling during a Thursday or Friday afternoon. All trying to get their containers to the port prior to a sailing cutoff.
Sounds like a great place to spend one's afternoon.
Here's one: the People's Waterfront Coalition says that if we knock down the viaduct, we can restore the waterfront so that salmon will spawn there. That's a lie.
That statement itself is a lie. The PWC doesn't claim that, and wouldn't... because everyone knows that salmon spawn in rivers. They do suggest that some limited beach restoration for public access could be done at a couple of locations where the water by the seawall is already very shallow.
An attractive green waterfront is a sign of a dead city, not a living one.
Portland has Tom McCall Waterfront Park, and is far from "dead." San Francisco has Justin Herman Plaza - part grass, part paved plaza - next to the new Embarcadero (boulevard!) and the Ferry Building, and isn't quite "dead" yet either.
"Here's one: the People's Waterfront Coalition says that if we knock down the viaduct, we can restore the waterfront so that salmon will spawn there. That's a lie."
It is also utterly hilarious. My assistant came into my office to ask why I was laughing so hard.
Isn't SR99's capacity limited elsewhere on the route? The AWV as it is has excess capacity relative to points immediately south or north of it, so replacing it with a stretch of road with reduced capacity -- remember no one is talking about completely removing SR99 -- probably won't have a major effect on the entire route. It's not like SR99 is a superhighway outside of downtown...
And while there is some cargo traffic on SR99 South of downtown, do any tractor-trailers use the AWV by downtown? What I've read says no.
#5 Sherwin -
In December 2005, the same Project for Public Spaces referenced by ECB rated Occidental Park in Pioneer Square as the 3rd worst urban square in the Western World (Europe and North America).
@11 - having lived in and visited for long stretches at a time many cities around the world, I can safely attest that Seattle is among the least of cities with parks.
Face it, we're bottom of the barrel when we come to greenspace.
I was more impressed by the economist's comments.
A large number of trucks don't use the Viaduct or surface Alaskan Way now.
Second, the idea is to both reduce trips through more convenient transit (eg. more routes, free passes) and to distribute the trips that remain among the other surface street options into downtown.
The experience of other cities _universally_ shows that this is what happens when they replace a waterfront freeway. Seattle is not exceptional here.
"But," you say, "there's water! Hills! Not much land!" Yes, you just described San Francisco, which continues to do just fine without the Embarcadero and Central Freeways. And, since there isn't much land, why use it to build an unnecessary freeway?
In addition, the pro-rebuild folks can't legitimately criticize the surface-transit option by saying "where's the transit?", because study and design of a comprehensive surface-transit option was cut off by the myopic focus on moving 110,000+ cars on a waterfront freeway.
We're trying to roll that back.
ECB: Your basic premise “If Washington State is going to reduce our contribution to global warming, Seattle residents need to drive less” is flawed at best, or more likely, intentionally deceptive at worst. There are other solutions which are much more likely to effectively cause the desired effect of reducing our contribution to global warming. Primarily changing what we drive, not how much we drive, in which case we will still need adequate capacity in, out and through the city. Stop being myopic.
"There is going to be stairs / elevators /steep grade no matter what is built thanks to the Denny regrade..."
Seriously, I don't know what this means. Would you explain?
err and I mean, because they're The Economist rather than a think-tank. They don't actually pay any attention to the surface-transit option, but they do say that they can't believe how shitty the waterfront is.
Fnarf: Cressona: lying, that's a good one. Cities with attractive waterfront boulevards? Can't think of too many. Cities with attractive waterfront boulevards built in the last hundred years? There are none. An attractive green waterfront is a sign of a dead city, not a living one.
Fnarf, you'd previously written: "Yes, state highways running on the surface always provide outstanding links to the other side." Sounds like a lie to me because, again, nobody is seriously proposing a real freeway along the waterfront. As for cities with attractive waterfront boulevards, I'd like to pose that question to others. I notice, Fnarf, you didn't even mention the Embarcadero by name. Perhaps you were hoping I would forget it?
More Fnarf: You wanted examples of lying, though. Here's one: the People's Waterfront Coalition says that if we knock down the viaduct, we can restore the waterfront so that salmon will spawn there. That's a lie.
I'd never heard them promote that. Not to say that they didn't, or they did. But providing spawning grounds for salmon is hardly a central matter in this whole debate, and if you have to reach for something so peripheral for an example of someone besides you lying -- well, I'm feeling pretty good then about the veracity of rebuild opponents.
Ah, now I'm realizing why I started my first post with: "I'm not sure I want to get into a debate on a blog comment thread,..."
#25 - Wow, that PPS article kinda sucked. The author could have just saved some time and wrote "I have an irrational fear of the homeless and also skateboards".
Very little space of those rankings actually critiques the design of the space in question, instead rambling on about the shortcomings the entire area and its inhabitants. Lame.
Me @32: Fnarf, you'd previously written: "Yes, state highways running on the surface always provide outstanding links to the other side." Sounds like a lie to me because, again, nobody is seriously proposing a real freeway along the waterfront.
Clarification: ...nobody is seriously proposing a real surface freeway along the waterfront.
The Viaduct would have even less impact if we cleaned it once in a while. It is dirty -- but that's a CHOICE we have made.
Anyway, don't worry. There is no money for a Tunnel and no political will for a Rebuild.
"Repair and Prepare" will be the last man standing. You heard it here first, which is an irony since the Stranger staff is scared shitless of "Repair & Prepare."
This list, and the list of worst individual spaces, shows how irrelevant a “World Class Waterfront” is to being a truly great city.
London! Paris! NYC! Barcelona! Tokyo! Boston! Seattle! What a terrible list to be on.
Oh, and that supposedly uninhabitable street in Paris? In half-decent weather it has wall-to-wall vendors with non-stop activity. The horror!
Yeah, without that street then Paris would be cool—but as everyone knows, it absolutely blows for now, right?
The whole 'Viaduct cuts Downtown off from the Waterfront' is a talking point I see that more and more of you are using with due and requisite urgency. It is obviously not true.
Your awesome idea for Surface Tranisit will be diesel buses running at lower speeds along a multi-lane street that indeed does cut off the Waterfront from downtown. Diesel emissions and particles are 4 times more dangerous than gasoline emissions. And unless the buses have their own lanes, expect this new, prettier traffic to run even more slowly than advertised.
Cheers to the Boulevard! Should be cute.
There is no money for a Tunnel and no political will for a Rebuild.
Yes. I think minimal repair will happen in the very short term, and we could get lucky in that either an earthquake won't happen, or it will but dozens of people won't get crushed, somehow.
But over the longer term, for the same lack-of-money-and-political-will reasons, surface-transit will emerge the winner - because essentially, "Repair and Prepare" is repair and prepare for surface-transit.
Sorry, my writing can be really terrible.
I'll make another attempt:
Downtown is already about one story above the waterfront. To get down to the water from First avenue one must go down a staircase, elevator or steep street. Currently one does this East of the AWV ,then walks under the viaduct.
Replace the AWV with a surface street and one could extend pedestrian bridges at 1st avenue's grade across the new street and THEN go down a set of stair or an elevator West of the street.
Either way, one has to go down a story to get to the water (and up to get back to downtown). In my mind it makes it a wash from an effort point of view -- either way one has to go up and down a flight of stairs. At least with a surface street one can have the traffic below rather than above you and enjoy the views.
So, I don't buy the "A surface street will require pedestrian overpasses that no-one wants or uses" arguement made above. Downtown will be higher than the waterfront no matter what we put in.
@31 - yeah, but the reason they say that is that they're the people who aren't Americans who actually live in those condos down by the Port conference center - well, part of the time, that is.
Always look for biases of the writers and their audiences.
the Waterfront has somehow managed to become and remain a mecca for tourists
A mecca for tourists? Are you kidding? Seattle waterfront is pathetic compared to any other tourist trap in a major city.
Primarily changing what we drive, not how much we drive, in which case we will still need adequate capacity in, out and through the city.
So what will we be driving? Hydrogen-powered jet packs? Bio-fuel-powered flying cars? We won't need capacity for those fantasies.
I don't have the exact links, but my understanding is that Seattle does okay for total park acres per capita, but ranks very poorly for open space in its downtown core. Think about it--we have the new Olympic Sculpture Park, a dog run in Belltown, a small P-Patch in Belltown, a little triangle plaza at Westlake, and the scarifying Freeway Park.
The quality of open space DOWNTOWN is the only relevant point here.
Fantasies. You are right, Keshmeshi.
If you're not gonna build my transit, I'm not gonna not drive my car. Even if you tear the schitt down.
I'm with Sherwin. Transit (fuck off, buses) first, then tear it down and let the mimes in.
Oops--I forgot the always charming City Hall Park near the courthouse and the lovely Occidental Park in Pioneer Square. Pretty damn pathetic total if you ask me.
Other downtown parks include Pioneer Square, two pathetic triangles where Westlake meets Stewart, and, more relevant to this discussion, the Washington Street Boat Dock, Piers 62 and 63 (former site of Summer Nights, now being repaired) and Waterfront Park (south of the Aquarium). There's also the private Waterfall Park by Pioneer Square.
I think that Seattle Center, Myrtle Edwards, and Elliott Bay are supposed to count as well, but they're on the border of downtown at best.
And, duh, Victor Steinbrueck.
Still a pathetic total of misfit spaces. And I believe Piers 62 and 63 may not be open space anymore. Even the new planned plaza by City Hall will be half taken up by a 32 story building.
1. in Chicago, LSD is a SURFACE HIGHWAY for its entire length along lake michigan. when it gets to the downtown core of chicago, with it parks & museums, IT BECOMES A BOULEVARD WITH STOP LIGHTS & CROSSWALKS. it takes a while to get through to the freeway on the other side, but it works. those in opposition to the cheapest solution here are delusional about retarded issues: speed, capacity, freaking VIEWS from the AWV. only those going north get those views, only the passengers should be looking, and with WSDOTS barricade section, only those on buses or in SUVs can see over it. don't be afraid anymore. let it go.
2. compare seattle's urban green space to say, Vienna or London. pitiful. the spaces are cramped & shoehorned into leftover spaces, covered with bird & dog shit & infested with agressive panhandlers. who spends time in courthouse park? occidental? freeway? no one with a job. no women.
Meanwhile, in the reality-based community:
LONDON - The mayor of London on Tuesday announced the city's first comprehensive plan to cut carbon emissions, stressing that global warming must be tackled locally.
Cities must seize the initiative on climate change, given the sluggish behavior of national governments, said Mayor Ken Livingstone.
"The fight to tackle climate change will either be won in cities such as London or will not be won at all," he said. "Cities are responsible for 75 percent of all the world's carbon emissions, and what London does to cut its emissions — and by working with other cities to do the same — could make a real difference to tackling climate change."
"-- remember no one is talking about completely removing SR99 --"
Yes, this is correct, however in the event of dismantling the AWV, what we'll be left with is a stroke victim with multiple, bleeding aneurysms.
A strange way to save a patient who
only needed an artery regrafted. Surface Transit way overthinks and
complicates a relatively simple problem.
@49 - exactly. That's why I voted for the Viaduct. Time to get over it, and start building DOUBLE the local transit - PERIOD.
Our population is going to DOUBLE by 2040. Time to stop whining and start building medium and high capacity transit - now.
Will @51, how is voting to build a larger viaduct going to do a damn thing to help build local transit? Your vote does not logically follow from your expressed desire for more transit.
Every dollar spent on a viaduct that will make things worse is a dollar that can't be spent on transit. Every day focusing on a rebuild is one day not spent planning for transit. Voting no on a rebuild focuses the conversation on the lack of transit. Voting yes enables people to avoid confronting the lack of transit while the rebuild happens.
Repair and prepare for surface and transit. That's the only realistic option.
@51 - You and about a dozen people post the same crap on here AD INFINITUM, AD NAUSEUM -- and you never get tired of it, do you? What is the deal? Don't you have anything better to do?
Has anyone driven on Alaska Way (the road, not the viaduct) to get from Elliot Way to West Seattle? Most likely not because it takes too long. But like what trip in Seattle doesn't take too long anways?
The boulevard idea is meant to sound nice... the way the public was supposed to swallow the estate tax repeal. A "really nice thing", but not something the average person would ever take advantage of. Just like the boulevard sounds nice, but the average person wouldn't use it anymore than they use Alsaka Way (the road or viaduct) on a north/south trip now... they use I-5.
I have one thing to ask... will they outlaw horse-drawn carriage tours along the waterfront with the viaduct gone? Seriously. Horse drawn carriages.
That is what makes Alsaka Way un-bearable as road... The horses travel in the right lane, but when traffic stops in the right lane to load and unload, everyone, including the horses, moves to the left, (sure, stops are illegal and the horse (technically a slow traveling vehicle) can't be in the left, but hey, people do lots of illegal things while driving which the cops never do anything about) then there it is... a line of cars moving as fast as a horse-drawn carriage can clipity-clopping through town. And no way to pass, no way to speed up. (I refer everyone to research the PI's "Getting There" column for problems those carriages create around town, and the town's answer to the questions. Which in a nutshell is tuff titty kitty, deal with it, they are here to stay in Seattle)
I don't like the surface option because Seattle WILL NOT get rid of horse-drawn carriages in downtown and it will not get rid of horse-drawn carriage on the new boulevard. In fact, the boulevard will be so grand, so pedistrian friendly, that the carriage rides will be incouraged. Sure, why not?
doesn't the state constitution prohibit spending gas tax money on anything but road projects?
that makes "transit" tough to fund unless it's the paulallenville streetcar.
Horse drawn carriages and semi-trucks. That shit makes everything slow, slow, slow. At least rush can be planned for... avoid roads leading to onramps for in-city trips, or avoid city roads if trying to get to I-5... you can't plan on avoiding those fucking horse (don't get me started on what century we're in) or the tractor trailers. Buses are slow too, but buses are GOOD THINGS.
Let's vote again on the Monorail! No, no, wait ... let's tear out some road capacity and then let's put more busses on what's left. And let's give each bus a zip code so you can get your mail there.
There is no third option. We voted that down.
Just for kicks, let's put the Monorail back on the ballot. What's it take 25,000 signatures? C'mon, let's go for a record. You can have a viaduct, or you can pay for a tunnel, or you can have a clean, fast Monorail that people will actually use. But you cannot have a voodoo solution of ripping out a major traffic corridor and replacing it with busses. The city will just move out onto 405 where it can move.
"doesn't the state constitution prohibit spending gas tax money on anything but road projects?--that makes "transit" tough to fund unless it's the paulallenville streetcar."
Yes. The state isn't going to fund mass transit. Any real transit (i.e., rail) will have to be planned by Sound Transit, or by another local or regional agency. It doesn't really make sense to create a whole new agency or try to get the city or county to do it when Sound Transit already exists for this exact purpose.
The state can use its roads-only money for surface improvements to 99 and short-term repair for the viaduct, and take whatever's left and try to spend it on 520. In the long run, WSDOT needs to shift its focus from roads, and statewide taxes need reform for more than just roads and transit, but we have to work with what's possible now.
way back up there at #11--i don't live in a place near any of the waterfront parks you mentioned. i don't have a car, so the most accessible place for me to get from anywhere is downtown, be it on the bus or my own two feet. so yes, a waterfront park would be nice. so would more transit so maybe i can visit alki again someday without it taking over an hour.
"You and about a dozen people post the same crap on here AD INFINITUM, AD NAUSEUM -- and you never get tired of it, do you? What is the deal? Don't you have anything better to do?"
I actually have thought about this. The Viaduct is among a very (VERY) small list of subjects that one can find a genuine difference of opinion on in Seattle. On virtually any other topic you'd be hard pressed to have anything beyond agreement or apathy, particularly on the Slog. Think of Annie's Iraq war post a bit back as a rare exception.
There is some joy in hashing out a complicated and important topic (says the person who posted the same point repetitively....)
it'd be great if a large segment of downtown could be car-free (fussgangerzone) but then again, it'd be great if there was any working transit system in this place. anyone used vancouver's skytrain?
@61 - all I know is most of the people that actually live around here, while great supporters of transit - bus and monorail and light rail - want our Viaduct rebuilt.
We are tired of excuses about the "Seattle Process".
I used to live two blocks from Vancouver's Sky Train (in Burnaby BC) - but for months I actually drove to work along Kingsway (parallel) - and one day I just realized that it never stops at lights ... and got up early to ride it ... and ended up getting to work way too early.
Enough talk. We already voted last week. Now start building transit - and not just bus or just monorail or just light rail - ALL OF THE ABOVE!
Double. Period. Whining time is over.
P.S.: If you don't like townhouses or condos, move.
yo, i remember reading that you (ECB) used to be vegan, but i was just wondering: why are you not anymore? this isn't supposed to be a dig or anything, but being vegan saves as much gasoline and CO2 (as well as lots of other pollutants) as taking a mid-size car off the road. in fact, it saves about 1.5 times more than trading in an SUV for a hybrid. I know most commenters will just criticize this post for being off topic, but to me, it seems the major beef you have with the viaduct is that it'll just be a big pollutant (i'm for the S+T plan too, btw). soooo...yeah.
Sorry, I've been away.
"Puget Sound's wild salmon stocks have been at the center of human life in this region for ten thousand years."
"MAKING SALMON AT HOME [...]
* Salmon shelves along vertical portions of the seawall, providing shallow water habitat at varying tidal depths, necessary for juvenile salmon migration
* Three new intertidal beaches, creating high-quality shallow water habitat for feeding, resting, and nesting in this part of Elliott Bay
* Small, planted breakwater islands along the most exposed parts of the shore, and planters attached to the seawall, to provide protected areas and bugs for food sources
* Gangplanks linking some piers to the new seawall, to allow light to get to the shoreline and help juvenile salmon see predators lurking in the shadows."
That's real sweet sounding, if you're an fourth-grader writing a report on Saving the Salmon, but it has about as much to do with actually saving actual salmon as the Apollo space program. Why is it on the web page? It's a LIE, it's a deliberate distortion of misunderstood scientific buzzwords and popular ecology sentiment to promote their aims.
As for "highway", what I obviously meant was that whatever replaces the viaduct, it will still be State Route 99, a state highway. The ferry dock is a state highway too. A familiarity with the basic facts would be helpful here.
If it works.
As for noise: the currect viaduct's noise levels could be reduced drastically by applying one of the widely available surfacing products that help do this. As it is, the surface is almost bare, and cars and trucks are banging the metal seams which stick up an inch every twenty feet or so.
Embarcadero: I didn't mention it because I have previously beaten this dead horse sufficiently, or so I thought. But apparently not.
The reason the Embarcadero freeway isn't very comparable to the viaduct is not because of some magical quality of Seattle that makes it different than every other city, as I am constantly accused of saying. It's not very comparable because IT WAS NOT A THROUGH ROUTE. It didn't connect to anything on the other end, so isn't missed.
It also doesn't go through the densest part of downtown. That stretch of waterfront is fringe to the city's interests.
The other outstanding feature of the Embarcadero, as it stands now, that it's PRECISELY THE KIND OF THING WE MUST KEEP OUT OF OUR CITY. It's a windswept wasteland. I don't see how any rational person could look at that "boulevard" and say "yes, this would be nice, let's get one of these". It's a SHITHOLE, a modern urban catastrophe of space. San Francisco has many charms. That ain't one of them.
"It didn't connect to anything on the other end, so isn't missed."
Somebody correct me if I'm wrong, however I remember it being nothing more than an on-ramp. Hardly the integral, north-south thruway which the current AWV represents.
Perhaps we can also note if the City's interest in taking measures to maintain the diversity of the neighborhood along the MLK section of Light Rail is as effective as they're talking it up.
This in my mind will provide nifty foreshadowing for how post Waterfront "opening up" will be re-apportioned out to you, Seattlite.
Come on. Lloyd, Dontcha know regional Sound Transit funds were gonna put money into helping keep those small businesses afloat and prevent the displacement of locals, even though us City taxpayers wound up footing the bill for what was supposed to be a ST expense? Nevermind the sad fact that most of the affected businesses were forced to move to South King County and will never see one dime's worth of benefit from the lovely new planted median strips, "pedestrian friendly" curb bulbs, and other frills that preserved few to no pioneer businesses, but will be a bonanza for the new wave of Starbucks, Quizno's, Subway's, et al ad nauseum. Some project mitigation, huh?
I'm gonna miss Ye Olde Curiosity Shoppe, but I'm sure it'll make a world-class Tully's....
Hah, X! But a melancholic Hah. All that new housing basically edited in around the Light Rail line by Henderson and Othello on MLK. You sould take a drive up there, even bike it slogger, if you haven't seen it. A neighborhood of multiple waves of immigration and varying ethnicities that I would guess many Slog readers rarely, if ever, have visited (or stopped to buy anything). Right here in your own city.
It's sad to see that the small businesses there are biting and in fact eating the bullet during rail construction and are going to likely have to fuck the fuck off when the real estate bonanza (that the city is claiming they will try real hard to prevent)happens when ST drives the golden spike.
Like I said, how it plays out there will show you the city's intentions of what they will *try* to do on your awesome new waterfront.
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