LETTER | Many reasons NOT to support mass transit going down the CKC

Editor:

We are NOT in support of mass transit going down the CKC.  Here’s some of the reasons:

* Environmental Impact.  MANY parts of the current CKC trail are environmentally sensitive.  If you or I as typical citizens went to the city building department and tried to get a permit to do ANY sort of work on several parts of that trail, we would be denied based on countless wetland protection ordinances.  They would require us to do countless setbacks, mitigations and studies.  In some parts of the trail, there is no acceptable mitigation possible.  Most of the ordinances I’m familiar with require 100-200 feet of setback from the edge of buffer zones.  How do you achieve this in a 100 foot wide easement?

Mass transit should go along the corridor that has already been designated for it… the I-405.

* Property Values.  This will absolutely RUIN property values for many, many homeowners along that trail.  While I personally don’t own along the trail, I do feel that the city should have at least some interest and responsibility in protecting their values.  They are saying the corridor is 100 feet wide…  This will put the buses quite literally through the middle of some property owner’s back yards which is just not right.  

* Poor Design.  Mass transit should go along the corridor that has already been designated for it…  the I-405.  All transit solutions should tie into that corridor as opposed to attempting to bypass and sidestep it.

* Cost.  This is going to cost $100’s of millions.  All crossings will require very, very substantial upgrades.  These “upgrades" will very likely have negative impacts on several of the crossings as well.  For instance, on NE 87th Street near the top of the hill where you turn right towards the freeway entrance.  If we suddenly have to stop for a bus crossing, that will have severe and unknown impacts on the flow of traffic.

* Crime.  No one ever likes to admit this but it’s true.  Mass transit tends to bring crime.  It builds in places where it’s acceptable for people to gather and loiter.  The police cannot always be watching all of these places.  It doesn’t matter how much money you spend on the facility.  For instance, the Kirkland Transit Center down by the library…  Right after it was redone, I’ve witnessed drugs being dealt down there with my own eyes.    

Geordy Rostad