City Re: Elevated Blogging
posted by October 15 at 10:15 AMon
Left Coast writes in the comments…
[Anyone] who knows Chicago will tell you that the traffic there is as bad anywhere. Dan is whining about Seattle being worse than Chicago, but he’d be hysterics if he had to deal with Chicago traffic on a daily basis. That’s not to say that Chicago doesn’t have perks—Wrigley is awesome, and the architecture is very interesting—just to say that Dan is a passive-agressive whiner.
I may be a passive-aggressive whiner, Left Coast, but I grew up in Chicago and I’m familiar with the traffic in my hometown. And I don’t think I’ve ever written that the traffic in Seattle is any worse than the traffic in Chicago. (Chicago, however, isn’t on the US Department of Transportation’s list of the nine US cities with the worst traffic jams—and Seattle is.) What I’ve hammered away at for years now is that we lack of options in Seattle. In Chicago, if you don’t want to sit in traffic, you take the train. If you don’t want to take the train, you can sit in traffic. It’s your choice. But you can’t bitch about your ass being stuck in traffic if you decide to drive since you chose get your ass stuck traffic in the first place.
Well, you can bitch about it. It’s just that no one will take you seriously.
Again, I grew up in Chicago—but I never had to “deal with Chicago traffic on a daily basis” because I took the El wherever I needed to go. Still do. Flew in to town yesterday, took an Orange Line train from Midway Airport to the Loop, had dinner with my brother, caught a commuter rail train out to my stepfather’s house. And it’s true: the traffic in Chicago was terrible—or it looked that way, at least, from the windows of the trains I took yesterday, trains that allowed me to avoid Chicago’s hysteria-inducing traffic.
Building light rail in Seattle won’t solve our traffic woes but it will give us options—including the option of moving closer to light-rail stations if we so choose, and avoiding, when possible, Seattle’s own brand of hysteria-inducing traffic.