Friday, November 14, 2008

Viaduct Revisited...

The Seattle P-I has some really cool graphics illustrating the differences between the various plans for the Alaskan Way Viaduct, which I blogged about in this post last year. State officials have said that they will make a final decision by the end of the year.

Now, if you live in Seattle, you probably know all about this already. If you don't live in Seattle, take a look at the pictures (especially the "Waterfront view") and tell me which option you would choose for your own city. The differences in the images are glaring. This area has the potential to be one of the coolest (and most valuable) parts of the city. It makes absolutely no sense to spend so much money on another giant concrete slug running through there... especially if it's just to save a couple minutes on a trip to the airport for people who just have to drive their cars everywhere. The alternative option of an elevated freeway dressed up with grass and other development just looks odd to me, and extremely expensive. The tunnel options all seem extremely dangerous given the crumbling seawall.

Take that money, invest more in Metro buses and streetcars and light rail, make the streets surrounding that area easier to travel on, and let the citizens enjoy that area finally. Boom, I just solved Seattle's biggest problem.


Kevin Moore said...

Jesus, that blows. Take a nice pedestrian area and run a 4-5 lane road through it. Blegh.

Abell Smith said...

Well, it has the potential to be a nice pedestrian area, but as long as I've been alive there has been a butt-ugly double-decker freeway there (the Alaskan Way Viaduct). However, since even a mild earthquake will probably bring that thing down, our politicians have been squabbling (for years) over what to do about it. The P-I's graphics represent, apparently, the final list of options.