Re: Advice for McGinn, from the Man Who Built Bellevue


Our Mayor is right, you know.

Just look across the lake and you can see how pitiful they are in comparison to us.
bellevue is a car-centric bland shithole full of oblivious yuppie assholes
@ 1 Bwahahahahahaha

You've got to be fucking kidding everyone WiS you fucking moron.

Bellevue is superior to Seattle in so many ways it is side splittingly laughable.

1. Better, cleaner parks.
2. Better city services
3. Better Police and Fire departments run by a better administration
4. Free parking almost everywhere you go, save a few pompous new office/condo projects
5. Reasonable parking rates where you do find pay parking
6. Safer streets
7. Economically stronger than Seattle

McGinn is a complete buffoon to think he is smarter than Kemper. Everyone knows it, even his boy toyz who work for the Stranger.

Business will start leaving Seattle over time, as the cost to do business there simply isn't worth it, when you can base out of somewhere nearby within commuting distance *cough* Bellevue *cough*

Except for a small minority of cool hipsters who heart Seattle, the wise $$ is all staying and/or moving out to Bellevue/Redmond/Kirkland.

But thanks for the laugh WiS and Mayor McGullible
Is Bellevue cutting its budget and laying off employees?

You're right @3. Bellevue IS superior. So please do us all a favor and keep your ass on the other side of the lake. Don't come across the bridge to see a ball game, don't come across the bridge to catch a rock show or see the ballet or take in the opera. Don't cross the bridge and clutter our freeways with your BMW or Audi or whatever vehicle you're using to compensate for your short-comings. Stay over there, in beautiful Bellevue, and everyone -- the people of Bellevue and sure as fuck those of us who live and love Seattle -- win.
Hm, Seattle grew in one year what Bellevue grew in 10. And Seattle has direct connections to the airport, the pacific ocean, cruise terminals, it has world-famous destinations and arts institutions.

More than that, the much-touted office space in Bellevue is overpriced due to a lack of development, and there's a lack of development because there's a lack of actual legitimate interest in moving your operations there. Microsoft didn't move to Bellevue to be in Bellevue, they moved to Bellevue to be closer to Seattle without crossing the 520 bridge.

Sniffing your nose at those damn Seattle hipsters and their millions of tourists and glittering skyscrapers and cruise ships and bars and clubs and huge theaters and arboretum and locks and actual, you know, history is like saying Bill Gates MUST be poor because he dresses down every day.
Yes, @3. Feel free to stay there.
@4 nailed it! how is it possible that Bellevue has managed to stay within their budgets and not lay off staff, reduce library hours, jack up parking rates, etc ad nauseum? All you rocket scientist hipsters need to answer that. How is that possible?


It looks like I touched a nerve with @5. Who said I had to stay anywhere? That wasn't the context of the original Stranger post. My reply was a direct refudiation of Mayor McGullible's trying to put down Bellevue as a lesser city, which is side splittingly laughable. I can enjoy living in Bellevue, paying less for services, getting better services, enjoying my functioning City Government, all the while staying in Bellevue for my entertainment. There is no reason the SeaChickens need to stay playing in Qwest field. I'm sure they'd gladly relocate just like many other NFL teams have moved out into the ex-urbs of their counties. And please don't tell me to stay away from the Mariners. They are a pathetic example of a baseball franchise. Bellevue has its own fine arts attractions, and there is many times I'd much rather stay closer to home and go to the Bellevue Symphony.

@6 Baconkitty care to cite your assertation of a 10 to 1 growth for Seattle over Bellevue? Really? Ohh... and kitty kat, you seem to forget that all the other things you mention are a short simple 12 minute drive away from me. I get to enjoy living in Bellevue, and cherry pick any of the things you mention for my occasional amusement! Bwahahaha

Maybe the difference between the 2 cities is their style of governance, and how they manage budgets, city planning decisions, infrastructure, and social services.

Seattle may indeed have something to learn from the City of Bellevue on all the above.

Unfortunately the City of Seattle and its residents have too big of egos to admit it!

3: McGinn may be a buffoon, but any buffoon is 100x smarter than Kemper Freeman.

4: Yes, they are.

8: See #9.
@10 Bwahahahaah

you can't be serious?

So you mean to tell me that you are comparing Bellevue's 5% budget reduction (on a $150 million budget)and elimination of 25 jobs compares to Seattle collossal clusterfuck?


There are no proposals to raise taxes, although there are some recommendations to increase fees including those for parks or business licenses.

Can Seattle say that?


keep trying moron

Seattle FAIL.

Bellevue Win.

So, let me get this straight you Eastside "rocket scientists":

Bellevue's proposed budget for CY 2011 is about $335.5 M and they're going to have to chop $11 M or about 3.28% of the total in order to balance it. Seattle's CY 2010 operating budget is $3.9 B (10 times greater, in case the math is too tough for you) and the Mayor is proposing cuts of $61 M or 1.56% of the total.

So, tell me again: which city is hurting more? Which city is going to have to make proportionally greater cuts in order to balance their CY 2011 budget? Which city is TWICE AS FUCKED as Seattle - just from a budgetary perspective alone?

Yes, do please stay in your beautiful utopia on the eastern shores of Lake Washington with your pristine parks nobody goes to, your free parking that almost nobody uses, and your cultural icons that almost no one attends.

11: Not only are your math skills bad (as COMTE points out), your reading comprehension isn't too good, either. You wrote:
how is it possible that Bellevue has managed to stay within their budgets and not lay off staff, reduce library hours, jack up parking rates, etc ad nauseum?
Which I refuted in 5 seconds with a Seattle Times article from last week, which took even less time to find. So please tell me, who is the moron? You can't even keep up with your own budget, so why criticize others? Yes, COMTE is right. Please stay away.
Dear @11:

Since obviously you are patently incapable of reading even the simplest budget summary, you might want to have someone with a couple more IQ points than yourself (like maybe a third grader) check your math:

Bellevue's CY 2011 budget is, as I note above $335.5 M, NOT $150 M, and even if it WERE the lower figure, 11,000,000 / 150,000,000 = 7.333% not 5%.

Also, Sarkozy's (you DO know who Steve Sarkozy IS, don't you?) CY 2011 budget proposes to cut 85 jobs, not 25.

Also, Bellevue's Capital Investment Program (CIP) just lost $100 M - roughly 22% of the previous seven year CIP budget of $453 M. That's $100 M less to improve roads, parks, sidewalks, neighborhood infrastructure improvements, maintenance of city resources and amenities, etc., etc.

So yeah, clearly things are sooooo much better on the Eastside.

"next!", indeed.

I'm glad to see you will be moving on from this thread. Seriously, it's a little painful to read your shitty trolling, and to see you getting trolled so easily by WiS, of all people. C'mon son. Nut up or GTFO.

I think we can all agree that Bellevue and Seattle are very different places, and adults can choose which city to live in/near. I'd say, "It takes all kinds, I guess," except that you'd probably be more satisfied with trite aggression. Fine: "People who willingly choose to live in deserve what they get."
Bellevue.... That's east of here, isn't it?
Am I the only one who though WiS was being sarcastic and siding with Kemper?
Mr. Evil Laugh (aka bwahahaah, etc),

Bellevue can't lay off library employees because they have no library. They have branches of the King County Library System.

I guess they could also raise parking rates, but first could you remind me where exactly the places are (or even place is) in Bellevue that attract large numbers of people, where public parking is available?

That's what I thought.
Having nothing to do with Bellview... This plan will support our police department? I really hope so because from the taxpayer and Belltown business manager perspective it seems we are losing a lot this year. I for one am very sad to see our community officers go. I attend my precinct community meetings and have had wonderful experiences with Terry Johnson; from coming out and training my staff on the most effective police communications to responding to complaints about officers. It is a shame this is being cut. I would gladly pay more taxes to see programs that work stay put.
Comte elucidates:

Bellevue's budget is $335.5 M
Seattle's operating budget is $3.9 B

So Bellevue (120,000) has one fifth the population of Seattle (600,000)...but it has one tenth the city budget and yet has clean parks, less crime, no urine smells on the sidewalks, good schools, a solid middle class, upscale shopping, free parking at most workplaces...

Sounds like Bellevue is far more efficient at providing a great lifestyle to its citizens then Seattle!

If Bellevue (BLV) and Seattle (STL) were stocks, I'd be dumping STL and buying as much BLV as I could!
Hm, Seattle grew in one year what Bellevue grew in 10.

Yes, and now Seattle has nearly the same population it had in 1950.

And Seattle has direct connections to the airport, the pacific ocean, cruise terminals, it has world-famous destinations and arts institutions.

Of course with all the billions spent on "transit" it should be just as easy to get to these from Bellevue as Northgate. Right? (And Kent is far closer to "the airport")

More than that, the much-touted office space in Bellevue is overpriced due to a lack of development,

And yet Seattle's vacancy rate is around where near the 6% of the exurbs.

Microsoft didn't move to Bellevue to be in Bellevue, they moved to Bellevue to be closer to Seattle without crossing the 520 bridge.

Have you ever driven in a motorized vehicle around here...ever? Bellevue is across the 520 bridge same as Redmond!

And the reason MS put its headquarters in Redmond is that absence of the Seattle B&O tax among other things.

Sniffing your nose at those damn Seattle hipsters and their millions of tourists and glittering skyscrapers and cruise ships and bars and clubs and huge theaters and arboretum and locks and actual, you know, history is like saying Bill Gates MUST be poor because he dresses down every day.

Sniffing my nose is right. Phew! Find me a corner that doesn't smell like the men's room at New York's Port Authority Bus terminal....
20: Bellevue doesn't have its own power company and library, for two examples...

1. PSE is headquarted in Bellevue

2. Bellevue Library is one of the most beautiful and well used around here. And it has free parking.
Points for McGinn for playing nice on this debate. It's a regional economy with strengths in each city. Fortunately our Mayor is focusing resources on our strengths and highlighting our competitive advantage which is a vibrant urban life, livable neighborhoods, cheap transit options, ethnic diversity, and superior entertainment. Freeman is focused on Bellevue's advantages; free parking, big wide roads, homogeneous office space, and numbing residential architecture that keeps people from knowing their neighbors.
23: Uh, Seattle City Light is part of the City of Seattle. PSE is not part of the City of Bellevue. The City of Seattle runs its own libraries. The City of Bellevue does not.
PSE..... Isn't that the company that used to be headquartered out of Seattle, and moved to Bellevue when the voters threw them out back in the early '50's for being expensive and unreliable?

Since they are owned by Australians (or something ridiculous like that) they don't really contribute much to Bellevue's bottom line. Plus, if it weren't for Seattle, Bellevue wouldn't have a water supply - other than the Evian trucks, and a little something-something from Lake Tapps (which tastes like suntan lotion and marine fuel)

But I'm sure Bellevue is a very nice town. I hear their mall has a Penney's!
I bow and curtsy both before the immortal "a little something-something from Lake Tapps (which tastes like suntan lotion and marine fuel)".
Ever tried going to Bellevue Square around the holidays? It's chaos. Lines of cars clogging up streets for blocks, endless wait for parking, stingy little parking spots that guarantee you'll leave with a door ding. It's a fucking nightmare.

Kemper Freeman should be jailed for that catastrophe.
Puget Sound Energy is a REGIONAL utility that provides electrical power and natural gas to residents of Island, Jefferson, King, Kitsap, Kittitas, Pierce, Skagit, Thurston and Whatcom counties. Seattle City Light is a MUNICIPAL utility that provides electrical power primarily to the City of Seattle, as well as to Shoreline, Lake Forest Park and parts of unincorporated King County. I'm sure the people living in Ellensburg or Bremerton or Tacoma would no more consider PSE "Bellevue's own power company" than they would consider Lake Washington "Bellevue's own lake".

Same goes for the Bellevue branch of the King County Library system; I'm sure all those people outside of Bellevue who also pay for its operation and upkeep would have a very different opinion on just exactly who owns it.

And you know why Bellevue's parks are so clean? Because nobody ever spends enough time in them to leave any trace of their passing. And you know why Bellevue has free parking? Because it's the only way they can lure shoppers downtown. And even then, on those occasions when I've driven through downtown Bellevue on a weekday, the place looks practically deserted. If free parking is such an enticement, then why is there always so much of it available? See that's the difference: in Seattle McGinn can count on additional revenue from increased parking fees because people will still come downtown; in Bellevue Freeman and his cronies can't get people into downtown even by giving away parking.
Oh, and just for shits-and-giggles @23, I pulled out my King County Library System card, the one I've used innumerable times at that "beautiful and well used" library of which you're so proud - and funny thing, I can't seem to find the word "Bellevue" on it, no matter how hard I stare at it...
Comte, don't forget Burien, Tukwilla, Sea-Tac, Skyway (technically unincorporated King County, but sort of it's own town) as well as a tiny slice of both Renton and Normandy Park! They escaped from the clutches of PSE as well.

Anyone who enjoys the quality of life in Bellevue is not someone I can relate to at all. I work there every weekday, and I can tell you with every fiber of my being that it is horrible for anyone who's young, or remotely hip, or has any taste at all, or who likes doing things and going places that are actually fun.

I'm sure most people here are already familiar with the town's many shortcomings, but I'd like to take a moment to document some of the ones I've most acutely endured, if I may.

Walking around town is awful; there are a half-dozen 6-8 lane arterials that run directly through downtown, so it's lousy with cars...I'm pretty sure the sidewalks don't smell like piss, but who can tell when you're breathing in car exhaust everywhere you go? I've walked all over the main part of downtown (Main to 12th ave; 405 to Bellevue Way)...I have to force myself to go out there because it's so completely unappealing. There are almost no mature trees, or interesting shops, no parks (they're all on the edges of downtown), no remotely interesting architecture, and absolutely no actual LIFE. Just yuppies and suits out for lunch. Or nobody at all...after 8pm on a weeknight, every street is deserted. Even during the day there's hardly anyone out, except those who are forced to work there and bored retired people.

Everything is ludicrously overpriced, from the housing, to the shopping, to the food. I'm not poor by any means, but even I rarely venture out of my office for lunch; I eat leftovers or use the cafeteria in my building. The food and shopping that is available is all chain all the time; there are almost no small businesses except dreadful-to-mediocre Asian food joints. There are never any pleasant surprises, good holes-in-the-wall, undiscovered gems...nothing.

As I mentioned, the entire downtown goes to sleep at dusk on weekdays; on weekends, it's even worse. Every tit-jobbed, fake-tanned, low-self-esteem gold digger and/or cougar/MILF/desperate housewife from Issaquah and Redmond and Kirkland and God knows where else descend on cheesy, garish bars with $15 cocktails and zero character, to get their slut on with paunchy, designer jean-wearing douchebags wearing expensive watches.

My office affords me a view of the city, and it's even worse from up there...a sea of dirty roofs punctuated by brand-new shiny towers that look like Disney-fied versions of actual buildings, all windows and smooth edges. Even driving in Bellevue sucks; you'd think with all the wide roads it would be a cinch, and yet the lights are so badly timed, it takes 10 minutes to go 8 blocks.

In conclusion, it's a sterile, car-infested, overpriced shithole that I can't wait to leave every day at 5pm. Seattle should take advice from Kemper and do the exact fucking opposite of everything he says.
Seattle has a port and rail lines, and an industrial base, along with lovely waterfront neighborhoods (both lakefront and on the sound).

Bellevue has a Nieman-Marcus and a Trader Vics.
@32 haha I wonder if they need someone to make them a brochure...
32 is great. But more than just aesthetic differences that make Seattle more enjoyable, there are social, environmental, and moral reasons why B fails. Seattle is more diverse, not as car friendly, an willing to address social problems with a plan that's more complex then "keep them out." Bellevue enjoys benefits from irresponsible living. Seattle might not be perfect, but Bellevue only works because of the embrace if these unjust worldviews.
I'm from out of State, so I realize I don't count. But as an observer with no preconceived notions, Seattle and Bellevue are clearly different, but not better or worse.

Bellevue isn't a great walking town, but neither is Seattle. I used to walk down NE 8th to downtown to get to work. Crossing 405 was the worst part. Crossing I-5 in Seattle is better. But from Main up to BellSquare isn't that bad. No worse than 1st or 4th Ave in Seattle.

Seattle has A LOT of cars. Seattle may be car unfriendly, but that doesn't stop most of its residents from using them.

Bellevue's downtown park is used as much as any Seattle park from my observations.

Bellevue lacks good live music and art venues relative to Seattle.

Bellevue has diversity. Go to Crossroads mall in Bellevue. Order a burrito, a Corona and watch soccer at the Torreros. You'll find it's very diverse.

Be it the Bellevue legal clinic or Eastside Domestic Violence program, they do address social issues.

Whatever industrial history Seattle had HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH YOU. I like the blue-collar myth as much as the next guy, but if you work in an office building, you aren't an heir to the history. You are a poser.

$15 dollar drinks are found in Seattle too. Plenty of good local pubs in Bellevue that serve cheap drinks. I'm partial to the Mustard Seed Too.

That said, root for your favorite city if it makes you feel better.

@36- I work right next to Bellevue's downtown Park. It's a wasteland compared to most of Seattle's major parks. (It's nice though, I do like the water feature.) Bellevue is a mall and a few office towers and a bunch of suburbs. Bellevue is a sad little Rich Person's town. It has the soul of a discarded napkin.

But it's nicer than Medina, which is collection of property values masquerading as humans.
@26Cat; Maybe Evil Laugh Man is compensating for Bellevue's small penneys? :^)

Directing the Seattle area regional growth gains a huge advantage with Link LRT. I'm not awarding kudos to Sound Transit for their efforts with the initial line nor its planned expansion, but the "potential" for Link LRT to finally bring traffic down to manageable levels should be considered unquestionable.

As for Mayor McGinn, he was elected to shake up the system. Throughout the traffic-clogged region, most people agree the system is dysfunctional and needs a shaking. Its old school adherants will be too ashamed to continue holding their positions of authority.
Bye bye, Conlin and Kemper.
I love how Kemper misses the obvious point that raising parking rates is GOOD for local retail parking, because there are more open spaces. At $2.50, every space is full, all the time. People drive around downtown for 20 minutes looking for a space, and then give up. Bumping up the price opens up some more short term parking and helps make downtown retail car-accessible.

On-street parking that's full all the time is the same as having no on-street parking. McGinn is trying to get some back.

We need to get some of those fancy variable-rate meters, like they're trying in San Francisco now. The ones that adjust the rates throughout the day based on the number of empty spaces.