SEPTEMBER 1, 1997
WASDOT SR 522
Once again I feel compelled to write in an attempt to disseminate information to the Citizens of the Kenmore area as well as the surrounding communities.
After the last meeting of the WASDOT SR 522 Multi-Modal Steering Committee, I was very discouraged because the State and the County Transportation planners do not see the needs of the North Lake/Eastside congestion problems. I do believe that they make a good faith effort but still in planning for the 21st Century they are short sighted.
When during this last meeting I mentioned the need for an overhead Mono Rail, and I was almost laughed out of the meeting. RTA has it's own agenda and they are planning for the expansion of the Mass Transit Systems, but these Rail lines are only to go through the I-5 corridor and do not come to the Ease side at all. Only bus service will. This doesn't really help with the decreasing of the traffic on SR 522, in fact they are planning for more busses.
While the idea of additional busses is a step in the right direction, it will increase the amount of traffic on the Corridor. Both WASDOT and KINGCO planners feel that if we were to increase the amount of traffic lanes, traffic would immediately fill the lanes back up to capacity with single occupancy vehicles which is contrary to the goal of removing the cars from the road and forcing people into the Mass Transportation Systems. Partially I agree with this concept. We nee to move more people more efficiently and at the same time reduce the vehicular traffic through the corridor.
So we are back at the Overhead Rail Systems, well there again we find ourselves at a paradox. The Burlington Northern right of way was deeded back long ago, people along the Lake City, Lake Forest Park and other neighborhoods along the path where the Rail line would have to go, do not want a train through their back yards, so what then?
Well I have been doing some inquiries and research and perhaps there is a solution. If we were to have a High Speed Passenger Only Ferry System that would run during peak hours and would also run during special events such as Football, basketball, and baseball games as well as other major events Downtown, a system that would run 7 days a week from South Lake Union through the Mount Lake cut and stop at the University, Kirkland and at last stop into the Lake Point area where feeder busses would disperse the riders to their destinations, would be an acceptable alternative and would run in all kinds of weather.
A similar system is now running from West Seattle to the Coleman Docks and this system has been approved for service after a successful trial period. This system could in reality fill the gap necessary in out transit nightmares!
Eduardo Garrido, Kenmore
After the last meeting of the WASDOT SR 522 Multi-Modal Steering Committee, I was very discouraged because the State and the County Transportation planners do not see the needs of the North Lake/Eastside congestion problems.