The latest Sound Transit boondoggle has been taking some hits from folks outside of Seattle recently – and even from a powerful State Senator from inside Seattle – and the latest question of the agency’s priorities comes from down south, the editorial board of Tacoma’s News Tribune.
As the editors there point out, “No one can accuse Sound Transit of not dreaming big, as in $54 billion big. The regional agency’s latest blockbuster, Sound Transit 3, billed as the capstone to the sleekest, most expensive rail system money can buy, is coming to this November’s ballot.”
However, they bring the Seattle-centric rail bureaucrats back to earth with this observation: “But back here in present day, we’re waiting on some promises left over from the last ambitious transportation package, Sound Transit 2.”
Seems that voters in Pierce County might recall that “five months before voters approved ST2, Sound Transit’s then-CEO Joni Earl told the Sumner City Council that it could take anywhere from four to eight years to build a parking facility there. Well, guess what? It’s been eight years, and counting.”
And those South County voters can probably keep counting for projects to reach them, since ST3 assumes its trains might be running to Lakewood by 2036.
As the folks at the TNT conclude, “Sound Transit wants voters to envision a future in which mid-century commuters receive fast, reliable transportation to schools, jobs, sports and entertainment with six minutes or less waiting time. But it’s hard for commuters of the future to buy this vision when they can’t find a place to park in the present.”
ST2, approved by voters in 2008, was supposed to fund light rail for 15 years. Now, 8 years later Unsound Transit is back wanting 3 times as much. What happened to the last 7 years of ST2?