Northwest NEWS

April 10, 2000

Editorial

Results of county's bogus UPD traffic analysis available now

   Admitted: "5.6mph average afternoon commute speed. 30 minutes to go 1.5 miles. A failed traffic concurrency score exceeding road design capacity by 42%. A 3-mile stretch of a 2-lane rural road that must be widened to 5 lanes."

   Is this some nightmare scenario for a road on the Sammamish Plateau? No. This is the future for Novelty Hill Road after Redmond Ridge and Blakely Ridge are constructed. But are these simply more allegations by the opponents of Quadrant's new city? No, afraid not. These are the conclusions from a "new" King County DOT study done last summer and kept from the public until now.

   In response to a FOIA request made last December, King County has finally released this new analysis of the near-gridlock traffic on Novelty Hill Road after build-out of the UPDs. The conclusions confirm the allegations made by opponents of the UPDs now for three years, that the UPD analysis was bogus and intended to shift massive road costs to the taxpayers. It also supports the allegations that the analyses done in 1995 and 1998 were done with bad data, and King County either did it intentionally or refused to correct it when challenged.

   So now we all have to ask ourselves the question, are we ready to pay the tens of millions of dollars that King County cheated in their tests to help Quadrant avoid? Or should King County immediately reopen traffic for the UPDs and make Quadrant pay for their infrastructure?

   Well, assuming that the county won't lift a finger to do the right thing, as has been their standard practice, Friends of the Law has filed a new lawsuit to force the issue. Read about it at www.publictrust.org.

Michael Costello, Redmond