July 25, 2005
Ed Murray Admits: Sound Transit is Pointless
Rep. Ed Murray (D-Fremont Statue of Lenin) and Chairman of the House "Transportation" Committee, admits in Tuesday's op-ed in the Seattle Post-Intelligencer that Sound Transit, which has back-burnered its plan to build a light-rail station at the densely populated First Hill neighborhood, is a pointless project:
If you can't serve the densest population center in the state, what's the point of building a mass transit system?
Indeed, as Emory Bundy makes clear in his recent media alert -- the only point is to ask for more money
Posted by Stefan Sharkansky at July 25, 2005
11:00 PM | Email This
1. I spent this weekend in Reno/Lake Tahoe area. While in Tahoe, I say the gondola that takes skiers to the top of the mountain. Cost: $20million in 2002. Moves at 20mph or so, faster if you really want. 6pp/car, cars about every 50ft, 2.4 miles in 12 minutes (faster if you want but not by much)or 5mph. Sounds slow? Try going from Ballard to downtown by city street & you will be lucky to do the same. All for maybe $25million in todays costs -- a far cry from light rail. Why not just tram people around the city? Like a bike wheel? Hub & spokes with spokes connected as well? For $200million I bet you could cover most of the city with a few waystations as well. Think of how little land has to be purchased to do this! Think of how unique and cheap (relatively) this can be done! Think of how this will put Seattle on the map like no other transit system! Think of all the couples that would want private cars for s*x! (well, maybe not advertise that part) I am TOTALLY serious.
1) forgot to delete 20mph sentence
2) lift began in 2005, budgeted in 2002
3) cars are dtachable, thus can be moved from
one line to another easily
4) click on name above for link to gondola site
5) given politics in Seattle is full of sky-high
and lofty aspirations, this is a perfect fit.
6) I STILL am totally serious. Can you see one
of these spanning Lake WA from Seattle to Bvue?
3. That's funny dano! I just got back from the Grand Tetons outside Jackson Hole and their tram was really scary. Do not know the specifics but it went up 4,000 feet in about 10 minutes it seemed. I wasn't sure, I had my eyes closed the whole time praying. I would have hiked down but someone saw a mama bear and two cubs earlier that day!
4. What's the point??? There IS no point in building it. I could've told Ed that a long time ago when I was voting no on this wasteful project. It's just another in a long string of useless "transit" project expenditures that will never improve traffic flow on our roads--because these people don't want to solve traffic problems. They just want to build their feel-good projects, even if those projects do almost no good.
5. Sorry Dano, If you put that project in Ron Sims hands, he would put it to the people at 10 million, get a yes, then spend 10 billion sudying it, and another 20 billion trying to build it. You'd end up with one station on the top of rainer valley, and the gondola would not have any doors. It would just go round and round with SOUND TRANSIT labeled all over it.
Emory Bundy lost a lot of credibility when he referred to the "State of Atlanta" in that report. Still, it's good background information...assuming the rest of it is error-free.
How many of the residents on First Hill work in the area? Do they need to leave the area to work? A station so people can get to the hospitals easier might be a good thing, but just because the people on 1st Hill and Capital Hill live in close quarters doesn't mean it's a great spot for a station. They may not use it and people may not want to go there. Also, aren't there buses from downtown to 1st Hill?
Love how Ed is so happy about this line "You don't need a car at all." I bet he dreams of the day when cars are gone...they are evil you know. :-) Oh wait, then where will all the tax revenue come from? Oops, but then again $.05 a breath or per step taken should cover some of that. Tax me please Ed!!
8. 'The State of Atlanta'? That's about how the rail hawks in Atlanta look at it. :)
LETS LOOK AT WHAT SOUND TRANSIT & TACOMA LINK HAS DONE FOR TACOMA. AS STATED BY THE "TACOMA BILDERBERG" POWERS TO BE, KEVIN PHELPS& JOHN LADENBERG.
1) IT WAS BUILT ON TIME!....ONLY 4 MONTHS LATE.
2) IT WAS BULIT ON BUDGET!....BUDGET WAS $60 MILLION, THE PROJECT CAME IN AT A COST OF $80, MILLION ONLY A 32% COST OVER RIDE.
3) IT WILL REPLACE ALL THE UNPRACTICAL & POLLUTING BUSES!....NOT ONE BUS ROUTE WAS CHANGED OR DELETED. IN FACT THE BUS ROUTRS HAVE BEEN EXPANDED THROUGH DOWNTOWN TACOMA. MUST GET THAT BUS UNION VOTE!
4) IT WILL TAKE CARS OFF OUR STREETS!....PLEASE
5) IT IS SAFE TRANSPORTATION THROUGH THE CITY OF TACOMA!....IF IT IS SO SAFE WHY ARE THE POLICE RIDING ON EVERY TRAIN. WHO IS FOOTING THAT BILL?
6) OVER 750,000 BOARDINGS A YEAR!...HOW DO THEY KNOW NO TOLL IS TAKEN, NO ONE COUNTS, THIS IS AN ESTIMATION.
7)ITS FREE!...USING SOUND TRANSITS OWN NUMBERS IT COSTS THE TAX PAYERS $5.30 FOR EVRY BOARDING AND WILL CONTINUE TO DO SO FOR THE NEXT 30 YEARS. THE TAX PAYER ALSO PICKS UP THE TAB FOR "FREE" PARKING. SO MUCH FOR BEING "FREE".
10. The PHLASH is on fire today!
Has anyone here actually ridden a good rail system? There's simply no comparison with driving - even with the current Amtrak Cascades line, it takes the same amount of time to do Seattle-Portland as if you drive. In a few years (check out www.wsdot.wa.gov/rail) it'll be an hour faster.
So what's progress? I mean, isn't that what being a Republican is all about? Progress, capitalism? Why aren't we privatizing the roads so that our decisionmakers aren't in control of who gets what?
12. Hey Phlash, I just had a question about #5 there - how many people die on public transit every year? How many die in car accidents? How many per trip taken?
In Portland, the MAX was nice and convenient when I stayed in the Lloyd Center area, to get to downtown, etc. If I lived anywhere NOT close to it, forget it. I wouldn't use it.
It's good for tourists and business travelers. Woo Hoo!!!
14. That's what Sims says: "Sho' me da money! Mo money, mo' money!"
Ed Murray's statements about bypassing First Hill show he knows little about how light rail systems can and must integrate with connecting bus lines.
The most important destination on the southern leg of Link is South Center. (Hint: Seatac is a place you go to when you're going somewhere else). South Center was ruefully bypassed, (nearest Link stations are 2 miles away on the other side of I-5), and cannot be readily served with connecting transit.
First Hill 'can' by bypassed because the nearest Link station at Capitol Hill is 1/4 mile away, and connecting bus service is in place through a transit-dependent corridor. Furthermore, Link First Hill station has a limited walking distance due to hilly topography, (less than 1/4 mile). Thus, improvement to connecting bus service in this case is as important as Link, even if the First Hill station were built.
Ed Murray's knowledge deficiency is somewhat excusable because all-knowing Sound Transit provides the talking points, and they don't go this far into design consideration either. They chose to bypass South Center because.. because.. well, somebody told them to. Sound Transit said it would save money, but they know this is not true.
The soldiers of the Fremont Liberation United Front (FLUF), thank you for posting a picture of our most recent nighttime mission.
Bundy cites an article by the Economist. Here is the link if anyone is interested: http://www.economist.com/World/na/displayStory.cfm?story_id=4129048
I love the last paragraph:
"Now Seattle City Council must approve the monorail's financing plan before letting building go ahead. Weeks ago, approval seemed certain, but not any more. This, in a way, is unfair. For though the monorail scheme has flaws aplenty, the real culprit is the political culture that allowed its creation in the first place."
Damned straight. People voted for this idiocy because they believe anything mass transit that is splashy is a solution to traffic problems, and the powers that be sell it because they believe that for Seattle to be a "real" city it has to comply with some sort of pre-defined image. Unfortunately, that image will soon change to one of a ghetto as anyone with sense will leave Seattle to the ultra rich that can afford the tax burden and the ultra poor that survive off the misguided KingCo largess.
18. Marc speaks the truth...for the past several years a number of friends have left the area -- some over the city line, others over the county line -- a few out of state entirely...of my four children two have officially left, one plans to finish to a degree before leaving, and my youngest -- 15 -- is demanding that mom and I sell out and move out. Seattle doesn't offer much to straight gen x'ers...poor job prospects, no family life, very expensive.
Gosh what a novel idea. If something makes no
sense to do, don't do it. Where do you suppose
these liberals get this stuff from? The Buddha, or Lao Tzu?
What's the sound of one liberal clapping?
Ron Sims watching himself on TV.