I want to see that all over town!
The one and only reason I have never subscribed to The Seattle Times is their intransigent opposition to transit. Here I thought things were going to be different with ST3. How foolish of me.

The Atlantic's CityLab site has this story out now, The Reach of the Bay Area's 'Tech Buses'. I'm reading about the Bay Area seeing 800 runs a day for privately run, employer-exclusive shuttle buses and I think, there's a region that failed to get its transit and development act together. And then I think, with the ongoing work on ST2 and with ST3, we have an opportunity to do so much better and to allow a sane commute to not be the sole domain of the employees of the biggest employers. And as if you could even call their commute a sane commute. I bet the vast majority of those shuttle bus commuters in the Bay Area wish they had an alternative to what they've got now.

I realize we already have Microsoft Connect, but God help us if we see that as the blueprint for meeting our own regional commute challenges.
$169 per person - does that include children too or just property owning people. Because it sounds a little low to me. I put my numbers into the ST3 calculator and every taxpayer should too. If you are a renter get your property tax for the building your in from the owner. Divide by the number of apartments and put in that amount. The ST3 calculator includes the amount you will be paying for ST2 as well - It's alot more than $169 per person:

What would reduce the amount? If Costco, Microsoft, REI, Amazon, Weyerhauser, and other companies who are putting money into the Pro ST3 campaign would tax themselves to help pay for it. Instead they want it for free and are asking you to pay for it - many of these businesses get tax breaks as incentives to come here and they don't pay any impact fees if they are in Seattle. Don't let these companies get away with not helping with the cost of this. Make the Sound Transit Board come up with a better proposal that includes businesses paying their fair share!
Many people won't support ST3, not because they don't believe in mass transit, but they no longer trust a city that wastes money from the current development windfall (which by the way is temporary) without maintaining or upgrading nuts and bolts infrastructure. And as far as the private sector, they build infrastructure in places like China so the Chinese employees can get to work in their factories (Apple) but they expect us to build roads for them here (Amazon et al.) Ass backwards if you ask me.

Yes we need more mass transit and to expand the Sound Transit network exponentially and rapidly. But the 'how' is at question not the what.
@3, There is no "better proposal", and your "thoughtful concerns" about funding source changes would have been just that several years ago (or even, still, a year ago), but voicing them now reveals you as simply someone who is against transit and has decided to concern-troll against it instead of being honest and openly arguing why you're against transit. ST3 wasn't created in a black box, it was created over years with nearly unprecedented levels of transparent public input (look it up!). Voting against the package sets us back years. It's not perfect because different people and communities have different needs, and different levels of government have different restrictions on funding sources. But within the restrictions our region has, this is the best package we will see, and it truly will help everyone in the region, either by providing transit access in their community, or by reducing congestion from their driving commute due to other people choosing transit. It is so important that this passes if our region wants to prosper for decades to come.
@4, what does the city have to do with this? We're voting for a Sound Transit proposal, not an SDOT proposal. Sound Transit, since it was reorganized way over a decade ago, has an outstanding track record of building quality infrastructure on-time (often early!) and under-budget. And if you're complaining about residents of Seattle (I'm sorry you feel that way), not Seattle government entities, well then...Seattleites are a minority of the Sound Transit Region, so there ya go.
@6 FTW
So those 200 parking spots are supposed to serve both Renton and Newcastle. Since that is on the outskirts of renton itself lets say that station would serve 20% of the 2 cites, so that's 200 spots for 20k people. Does Sound Transit actually want people to use that facility?

And then its only bus transit, so instead of driving an hour (if you're lucky enough to get one of those 200 spots) you'd be sitting on a bus for an hour. So the big improvement here is that it will take longer for someone to commute, and cost more than driving. Excuse me for not seeing why its worth it for anyone on the eastside.
@8 you'd see a lot more if you weren't willfully ignorant.
@6, It's complicated. In fact, the City of Seattle does have to pay for much of the infrastructure and preparation of the Sound Transit System. The political structure is obscure to the average resident. The mayor of Seattle is on the Sound Transit Board in a position of participating in decisions on the implementation of the system.

The city should be in good faith funding maintenance of our city's infrastructure if for no other reason but to maintain faith in government by the residents so that we will support them on important ventures such as these.

Yes, I am speaking as a Seattle City Resident because I feel we are being screwed by the mayor's office and the city council by their poor and wasteful choices. Look at the Pronto debacle. Furthermore, I doubt that The Stranger is a regional news powerhouse around here. It's audience is probably urban. So, yes, I fell that I am speaking as a local to locals.

I support ST3, but many people won't.
While this is only tangentially connected to this subject, it is interesting to do some basic calculations on transit and capacity.

The easiest example is to compare capacity with that of size. The best place to examine this is the I-5 corridor through the Seattle area. According to a 2014 study, the I-5 corridor through that area, at its absolute peak capacity and speed, can move about 7,500 people per hour. Northbound I-5 capacity at the I-90 interchange is 1,530 vehicles per hour, per lane.

When you look at light rail (which takes up a fraction of the land area that a 6-lane freeway takes, the current operational capacity of light rail (mostly 2-car trains, leaving every 6-minutes), is about 4,000 people an hour, at "non-crush" capacity (which is just under 200 people per train car)

When you bump those train cars to 4-car length, and push the departures to a 2-minute time, which is completely feasible with current station design, you move light rail capacity into comparatively stratospheric levels of nearly 24,000 riders an hour on a single line, in a single direction.

To get that level of north-south capacity on interstate 5, you'd have to have a **30-lane** freeway. Let that sink in, for the next time you hear someone say "we need to build more freeways!" That sounds good in principle, but in the downtown core, which skyscrapers are you going to tear down to make room for ~20-more lanes of freeway that could be accomplished with two light rail tracks?
@9 And you'd understand the skepticism if you weren't a self-serving troll.

So by all means please explain the great benefit of ST3 for the residents of Newcastle.
@3, corporations are made up a humans - they're not mythical beings above us all. The people who work for the corporations will be taxed like you or I. I have no idea why people want to tax legal fictions rather than the actual humans behind them.
@13, well said, but. We do not trust the 'legal' fictions to compensate employees in the region well enough for a good tax base whereas they over compensate higher level employees (many of whom do not live in our jurisdiction) or investors (most of whom do not live in our jurisdiction). So, yes, we must tax the fictions. But I do agree that corporations are made up of humans making decisions daily. And those humans often fail at ethics and morality toward customers, residents, and other employees while they hide behind the employers banner.
@2 I'm a former, long-term San Franciscan and I support ST3. Those tech busses would never go away. It's door-to-door service, practically. The shuttles have fast wifi, plush seating & working space, free food & drink, a bathroom, and maybe most important to a lot of the newcomers to the city, they don't have to ride with the poor, the body-odor rich, or the mentally disabled. Living in the echo chamber of the tech bubble makes them feel safe and the tech bus is just another way to coddle them and preserve "culture fit." Public transit will never compete.

That being said, as someone who commuted for years down the peninsula, when someone hadn't committed suicide on the tracks (a frequent occurrence and a 1-5 hour delay), it took me nearly 2 hours one-way. A nightmare commute. And this was before standing room only became common as Caltrain is today. The area is bursting at the seams with people.
Yeah, the $169 is way too low. BS!
@17 you are correct. I used the link in the SLOG article above that sent me to the Seattle Times ST3 tax calculator. Yup, over $700 increase for my household. And we it ain't a new car and we bought our home years and years ago. So we ain't rich.
Well, we're thinking about cancelling cable anyway... We already stopped eating out, and always look for sales -online. Between parking and bags, it's easier and cheaper to buy Amazon instead of using retail. The city is strangling itself financially and doesn't even realize it. And as I've said, yes, the cities have to ante up for many of the the infrastructure costs for Sound Transit. Google it and you'll see.
Heidi, any chance you can show your work? I'm not sure what you consider an "average citizen," or how you calculated the tax increase that citizen is likely to pay.

I ask because your prior work hasn't shown a particularly strong grasp of basic math skills, and the Stranger editorial staff either does check the work of its writers or suffers from similarly poor math skills.
Bollocks. I just used the handy ST3 tool (, and with just a 650-sq-ft, 1-bedroom condo valued at $157,000, it came out to over $400 ($210 for the new tax + $213 for the old tax).

You want to tax me, fine -- just be honest, don't lie about the real costs.

22 can purchase a Seattle Times subscription for less than $26. I could careless about the substance of this article. Just doing some fact checking ;)

$26 Seattle Times subscription:…

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