Why would Gregoire really care? She'll be long gone out of office when it does start to go over budget. And it WILL go over budget and be at least a year late.
I just finished watching The Wire, and after reading this, I'm seeing "McGinn for Governor" signs in my head ala Tommy Carcetti.
The last project that I saw brought in under budget was ...

Damn, sorry, I'm just not that old.
Generally speaking, tunnels cost ten times the next cheapest surface alternative. This tunnel is the first of it's kind: largest diameter; built under water; built through fill dirt. It can not be possible to build a budget based on anything other than hope.
This tunnel would have folks wanting to go downtown from South or West Seattle would be forced to drive through the stadia crowds to enter town; Belltown residents will get to dodge all the folks coming from the North end into town. Whatever open space revealed by removal of the viaduct will be used for commercial purposes.

What's not to like??
More proof McGinn hates the tunnel and will do anything to stop it.
One thing McGinn can do is simply say that Seattle City government will not cooperate in this unprecedented attempt to put City taxpayers on the hook for the State's cost overruns.

And what's actually intended here? City taxpayers, who are not a party to the contract between the State and its chosen Contractor, are being compelled to pick up the cost of any overruns that may be incurred. This is intended to relieve the State of responsibility for managing its own contract, having an uninvolved third part pick up the overage, whether caused by unforeseen conditions or outright mismanagement.

Run into bad soil conditions and need another $500 million to keep boring (Brightwater!)? No problem! Seattle taxpayers will pick up the tab!

No need for the State's project managers to keep a sharp watch when someone else is picking up the excess, is there?

What a bullshit way to build major public works, and as I said it's never been done before. And it will not be done this time. The State can attempt to collect by suing the City, and then watch the case get thrown out of court. I'm sure there are a few sharp attorneys out there who would love to represent the City and its taxpayers in such an action.
Since it isn't going to go over budget, I'm sure the state will have no problem agreeing to pick up those hypothetical never-going-to-happen costs.
"We intend to bring the project in on time and on budget." Way to go, Viet Shelton. Even Donald Rumsfeld has never sounded so cavalier and contemptuous.

So I can't help but wonder now where are our fearless leaders on the City Council on this? Brave men and women who apparently have much bigger fish to fry, men like Tim Burgess, who's busy cracking down on panhandlers, or Richard Conlin, who's busy coming up with small-bore initiative for which he can crank out press releases. Will the City Council stand up for the taxpayers of Seattle or at least tell us why we have nothing to fear?

Somebody knows precisely how this is going to play out--who's going to end up being on the hook and how--and I wish I knew what they knew.
@5 and @7 tied for the over-the-top win.
@3, Not in Seattle, but rumor has is that the Portland MAX light-rail came in on-time and on-budget.

RE: McGinn's letter. I'm going to guess that he's laying the requisite groundwork for his position. I hope that speculation plays out.
One thing is for sure, McGinn is doing everything he can to make the tunnel project go over budget. The prophet clown and his self fulfilling prophesy. Must have really hurt the fool when he found out only 21% of Seattleites supported his moronic surface "option".

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