Some politicians have asked why the voters rejected Proposition 1, and rejected it so soundly.
We have talked to many hundreds of people as part of our efforts to improve transportation on the Eastside.
The feeling of many people is that Proposition 1 was enormously expensive, far more costly than Boston's notorious Big Dig. Yet, it would do little or nothing to reduce traffic congestion and would be bad for the environment.
Proposition 1 also ignored some very obvious solutions. For example, the Eastside has a railroad that is ideally suited for use as the core of a regional commuter system, and we have shown how a three year pilot transit service on it could be conducted for under $10 million. It is one of the most effective and also one of the least expensive things that could be done to combat congestion and climate change on the Eastside. Yet, some government officials keep pushing to replace it with a bicycle trail.
There are additional low cost and truly effective things that could be done to improve mobility and reduce pollution. An example is improving bus service between Seattle and Bellevue, including making the center express lanes on the I-90 bridge two way and giving traffic signal priority to buses in south Bellevue.
A number of additional ideas are listed in the article on the eastsiderailnow website titled 23 Reasons to Vote No on Proposition 1.
We hope we can now start moving forward to make our region a world leader in the development and application of imaginative, effective and fiscally responsible solutions for our increasingly critical transportation and environmental problems.
For links to other testimony by Eastside Rail Now!, see Index of Public Testimony.