Dear Council Members:
As usual, thank you very much for serving.
I saw the item regarding buses on the CKC on the agenda for Tuesday’s City Council meeting.
I think it is very premature to spend $250,000 to begin the planning process for this.
I seriously doubt there is (or will be) much interest in taking the bus from Totem Lake to Bellevue (or Google). I also believe that like every other Metro/Sound Transit project the cost per rider will FAR exceed any possible revenue or ancillary benefit in terms of traffic or environmental impacts.
I’m sure that the neighbors along the trail who objected to people walking along the trail with potential access to their properties will now far more strongly object to regular commuter bus traffic along the trail. That’s a lot more intrusive than the previous occasional commercial or dinner train before the City bought the corridor.
As I read the memo from staff to the Council, I think staff implies stronger and earlier support for bus/light rail on the trail than the Council actually voiced when the corridor was purchased and developed. Again we are facing a question of “Who drives policy in Kirkland? Is it the staff? Or is it the Council?
The attached “fiscal impact statement” attached to the agenda item is totally lacking in useful information. The section for "Legality/City Policy Basis” is left blank. The “Fiscal Impact” statement tells us absolutely nothing. “Revenue/Expected Savings” is also blank. It’s a very poor excuse for a fiscal impact statement.
We bought the corridor with the potential for future use for rail/bus traffic. I do not believe the City should - at this time - spend $250,000 to promote that use.