Reposted from Blogging Georgetown
Wednesday, February 17, 2010
South Park Bridge replacement: no federal funds, but…
Last October, an application was made for federal stimulus funds to replace the South Park Bridge, which is in even bigger danger of failure then the famed Alaska Way Viaduct. Says the PI blog:
On Wednesday, Sen. Patty Murray’s office announced a $30 million stimulus grant to the Mercer Corridor Project….
But, in my usual style, I have to call bullshit here:
“This funding is a critical piece of the puzzle for a project that is central to the economy of our state and the Puget Sound region,” Murray said in a statement. “Rebuilding the Mercer Corridor is going to create direct construction jobs, improve port and highway access, and reduce commute times in an area that contains some our most vital employers.”
Question for Senator Murray: how much breakbulk and and container traffic moves in and out of the Port via Mercer Street? We already know the answer: zero. That traffic is routed through SoDo or the Spokane Street Viaduct. Considering that Murray has a long standing relationship with a major marine terminal operator in the form of campaign contributions, and is married to an executive who works for one of the major marine terminal operators, it’s quite surprising that she would make such a statement that obviously isn’t true.
But then we would have to discuss the real reason for the Mercer project, which more or less is about propping up a failed condo market in South Lake Union, and propping up an industry (Biotech) that can’t seem to make much of a profit. And who can forget the last of the causalities of that neighborhood makeover.
Still, I haven’t said much about the South Park Bridge in particular, because a lot has been said already (here, here, and here). But one thing is for certain, and I’ve mentioned this a while back: stumbling bumbling mayor McGinn could step in and demand action via a proposed levy. He “supported the application” for the federal funds, and this was supposed to be a reason as to why people in the Duwamish area were supposed to vote for the guy. Now is his chance to make good on the promise. A no brainier. A soft-pitched softball. All he’d have to do is re-include the sliver by the river in the White Center annexation.
He might need encouragement. If you want to encourage him, click here.