The phrase,'Unsound Transit', was coined by the Wall Street Journal to describe Seattle where,"Light Rail Madness eats billions that could otherwise be devoted to truly efficient transportation technologies." The Puget Sound's traffic congestion is a growing cancer on the region's prosperity. This website, captures news and expert opinion about ways to address the crisis. This is not a blog, but a knowledge base, which collects the best articles and presents them in a searchable format. My goal is to arm residents with knowledge so they can champion fact-based, rather than emotional, solutions.


Monday, March 10, 2008

PI wants tolls on SR 520 to alleviate congestion

1/15/08 Evergreen Point Bridge: Congestion's toll


When it comes to the Evergreen Point Bridge, there are two absolutes we hold to be true -- that for safety reasons, we need to replace the bridge soon, and that given the defeat of Proposition 1, we need to find a way to pay for it.

To that end, we support Gov. Chris Gregoire's plan to institute early toll collection to help pay for construction of the bridge without imposing new taxes on all. Some might argue that a toll is a form of taxation, but at least it's targeted to the users of the bridge and not the general population, which should please those who fought to defeat Prop. 1, a roads and transit package that would have raised $1.2 billion for the construction of the bridge.

We're interested in the plan because it achieves the objective of getting the bridge paid for (although having one built sooner than 2018 would be preferable) as well as yielding the potential bonus of dealing with traffic congestion.

If use of tolls were to become more widespread, as Rep. Judy Clibborn hinted, then we urge lawmakers and transportation planners to expand mass transit (read: fund more runs on more routes). Offering people a carrot, not just a stick, as a reason to use their cars less frequently will be more effective in the long run.

While the bridge has not yet been designed -- and mediation leading to that point is ongoing -- if Gregoire can get people to rally behind her six-lane bridge, then all the better.

Let's not forget: This is only a proposal.

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