Alaskan Way Viaduct: Three more updates

LATEST BRIEFING MATERIALS: Want to see what the “integrated elevated” and “lidded trench” drawings look like, as mentioned in our earlier as-it-happened coverage of the advance briefing prior to the Stakeholders’ Advisory Committee meeting that’s under way? They’re now posted online. (You can see all the materials from tonight’s meetings, linked from this page.)

RETROFIT REITERATION: As mentioned in our running updates on that earlier briefing, Viaduct project leaders say they’re “done” with evaluating a possible retrofit. They reiterated it again at the Stakeholders’ Advisory meeting tonight, though committee member Peter Phillips said he felt they shouldn’t close the books on it without doing the type of evaluation suggested toward the end of this letter; WSDOT’s David Dye reiterated tonight that they feel they’ve spent more than enough time, money, and effort evaluating and re-evaluating it, and nothing new has come to light to lead them to say “ah-ha,” it should be back in the mix, so they’re “done.”

VIADUCT MOVIE: Some months back, we told you about documentary maker David Wheeler‘s search for a viaduct commuter to include in his forthcoming film about the Viaduct situation. The documentary’s done now – here’s the official news release (we’ll be checking with him to find out if screenings are planned):


While Political And Civic Leaders Debate, Time Is Ticking Away On Seattle’s Aged Waterfront Freeway. Will The Solution Come Too Late?

Seattle’s citizens are frustrated at the politics surrounding the Alaskan Way Viaduct replacement project. Many feel the 2001 Nisqually earthquake nearly caused the viaduct to fail and crumble to the ground. Yet now, over seven years after the earthquake, leaders still haven’t provided an answer to the question of how Seattle is going to replace the viaduct. David Wheeler’s documentary, “The Alaskan Way Viaduct: Seattle’s Road to the Future”, examines this roadway, it’s human effects, and perhaps why the decision is so difficult.

The documentary follows the concerns of Laura Staley, a West Seattle resident who got involved by responding to a blog posting seeking participants in the film. Six months pregnant, and caught in the 4 hour traffic jam the day after the quake, when the viaduct was closed for inspection, Laura’s concerns mirror many citizens who use the viaduct to commute downtown. Other key interviews feature a sustainability expert, a transportation blogger, a street and transit advocate, and national leader and former Milwaukee Mayor, John Norquist.

In the film John states, “Conquering traffic congestion should be a really low priority”. Find out why and see other issues Seattleites face with a roadway that is racing the clock before the next major earthquake hits the Puget Sound area.

1 Reply to "Alaskan Way Viaduct: Three more updates"

  • Laura Staley September 26, 2008 (10:32 pm)

    Just had to say thanks to WS Blog. I read about David’s documentary project on WSB and got in touch with him about the project – and ended up being part of the documentary. I have had the opportunity to see the final film. It provides a very balanced look at the the viaduct issue and the different options. I hope it will spur people to make our leaders come to a decision!

    Laura Staley

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