With all the fanfare of a visiting fireman, the loot rail system in Seattle finally got off the ground when it opened up a few days ago, and the results have been... well, what *I* expected, but surprisingly sparse to the idiots shilling this obsolete, massive waste of money.
This blog is rife with reference to the massive waste, fraud and abuse of loot rail; the government lies that were used to persuade the ignorant it was a good idea, the hundreds of millions.... billions of dollars added to what the voters agreed to without their permission.
And the result?
The 600-space lot at Tukwila International Boulevard Station was about half-full around 1 p.m., compared to about a quarter-full mid-way through the morning commute.THIS is the result of $2.3 BILLION in taxes, expenditures and lies?
And there's only $19.6 BILLION (before cost over-runs and delays) left to go.
This is what WE face HERE. The expenditure of 4, 6, 8 or more BILLIONS of dollars to implement a system that will NOT move ANYTHING CLOSE to the number of people required to justify it's absurd, obsolete costs.
And one wonders: since Sound Transit admitted, several years ago, that a COMPLETED LIGHT RAIL SYSTEM WILL HAVE NO IMPACT ON TRAFFIC CONGESTION....WHY ARE THEY DOING THIS?
For the same reason they're doing it down here... except the people in the Sound Transit area at least had the4 courtesy of a vote before their governments raped them... and we don't even get that.
Imagine what we could have done with that money to actually make a difference, instead of enriching the unions and a select few contractor/suppliers. The schools, the hospitals, the health care, the housing that we COULD have built instead of this nonsense.
And the arrogant asses here... the Pollards, Stuarts, Leavitts, Columbian Newspapers WHO WILL NOT HAVE TO PAY FOR THIS UNIMAGINABLE WASTE will have this to look forward to... this utterly abysmal failure of policy and waste.
Originally published July 20, 2009 at 9:00 AM Page modified July 20, 2009 at 1:22 PM
On the first day of regular light-rail service, ridership on Sound Transit's new Link train system is, well, rather light. Trains are arriving from downtown Seattle to Tukwila with fewer than 10 passengers aboard.
Seattle Times staff reporter
Light-rail ridership appears to be picking up a bit mid-day, on this first day of regular service.
The 600-space lot at Tukwila International Boulevard Station was about half-full around 1 p.m., compared to about a quarter-full mid-way through the morning commute.
Around 8 a.m., trains were arriving at Tukwila from downtown Seattle with fewer than 10 passengers aboard.
Sound Transit's $2.3 billion line was getting better use near downtown this morning, where a train entered International District/Chinatown Station with just over 100 people aboard at 7:30 a.m., said Martin Young, a commuter-rail manager helping with Monday's light-rail start.
The Times counted 39 riders aboard the 9:30 a.m. northbound train into Chinatown. Beacon Hill Station appeared the busiest.
The few people who riding the train were enjoying the trip.
Giorgio Umali, 23, was heading from Tukwila to a receptionist job at Virginia Mason Medical Center, fiddling with his tie and looking toward the mountains.
If he weren't taking the train, Umali said, he'd be driving downtown and hunting for a parking space — a risky venture after getting a $35 parking ticket only last week.
"I thought there would be more people here today," Umali said. "I think it will be definitely worth it in the long run. I-5 can be horrible sometimes."
"I like it," he added. "It's nice, clean, spacious. Good views."
The train glided through Tukwila at 55 miles per hour, but on one curve, it rocked slightly side to side. Otherwise, the ride was smooth.
Eden Bossom tried the southbound train today as part of her commute from Capitol Hill to Southcenter. Bossom supports the light-rail system, saying people need to change their mindset about commuting. She plans to test the system throughout the week, timing it against her typical Metro bus commute.
She rode her bike one mile to Westlake and one mile from Tukwila to Southcenter, bringing it aboard the train. Bossom's bicycle swung on its rack, with its seat protruding into the aisle because of where the train's bike rack is positioned. On Friday, a swinging bicycle whacked Sound Transit CEO Joni Earl during a dignitary ride, as first reported by The Stranger.
Ticket machines have been freezing up sporadically during customer use. Technicians were installing software patches. A standard two-car train can hold 400 people packed, and more than 300 people comfortably. Over the weekend, an estimated 92,000 people took free rides, Sound Transit reported.
Normal use is projected at 26,600 per weekday next year — far more than today's trend.
"It's a Monday morning, on a brand new system, on a really nice sunny summer day in July," said spokeswoman Linda Robson.
Metro bus routes will change this fall to feed more riders to the stations, the new school year should add hundreds of riders, and on Dec. 31, the train line will grow two miles to reach Seattle-Tacoma International Airport. (A free shuttle bus goes from Tukwila to the airport until Dec. 31.)
Skeptics have complained for years ridership will be weak, because the Link corridor serves a limited area, compared to buses that go multiple places.
This is a starter line. Ridership should grow because of population increases, as well as a new $1.9 billion line in 2016 to Capitol Hill and Husky Stadium, followed by $18 billion in lines to Lynnwood, north Federal Way, and the Overlake Transit Center, near Micrsoft in the early 2020s.
Mike Lindblom: 206-515-5361, or firstname.lastname@example.org
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