The Seattle City Council just approved an ordinance on the deep-bore tunnel's Environmental Impact Study (EIS) by an 8-1 margin. Council Member Mike O'Brien was the sole no.
The lone dissenter O'Brien, who, um, read the EIS (unlike other council members) expressed concern about two of the ordinance's four clauses. Specifically, he didn't like that the purpose and needs behind the project articulated in the most recent EIS have supposedly changed from those put forth in the 2004 and 2006 versions. He says it is now primarily about automobile capacity, a mission that is "inconsistent with the values of the city." He also argued that separating the city from co-lead status with the state would insulate the city from future cost overruns.
But Council Member Sally Bagshaw remarked, "No more dithering, no more time for divisiveness. That's what you are saying with your signs that say 'Enough,'" referring to members of the public gallery. Councilman Nick Licata spoke about transparency, stating "Does the mayor want to stop the tunnel? If so, we should talk about it openly." The loudest applause of all was for Council Member Bruce Harrell, who tried to fast-track debate by saying "Let's get on with it," only to see his plea thwarted with a long statement from Council President Richard Conlin.