How can you define wacky in these ever-increasing traffic-congested times? Here’s an example from the Seattle Times editorial page:
Over the next 20 years, Seattle plans to “aggressively convert street right of way to non-vehicular use, discourage creation of parking capacity as the city grows, and minimize parking at public parks, limiting their accessibility. It may also toll streets to pay for such improvements.”
But, that’s not all.
The Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) — under the direction of Seattle Mayor Ed Murray — will begin ranking street performance “by how many single-occupant vehicles (SOV) are using them.” Because the ultimate priority is to get people out of their cars, the streets with fewer cars using them will be ranked as the best performing. Via the Seattle Times:
So a street may be ranked as performing well, even if it takes an hour to drive a mile, as long as it has a good mix of buses and bikes.
… this approach will influence decisions on where to improve or reduce street capacity for cars. It will also affect the city’s negotiations with big developers, to mitigate the effect of their projects.
Most of all, this shift gives the finger to those who drive cars, meaning nearly all residents and businesses.
Ladies and gentlemen, that’s called a war on cars.
The approach still needs to be approved by the Seattle City Council. But, considering it’s the Seattle City Council, the only real questions are whether it will pass unanimously as is, or whether the council will try to make it even worse.
Seattle’s plans even have some liberals raising their eyebrows.
As the recent Times editorial points out, the plan doesn’t reflect “reality.” The reality of transportation here is that, in 2014, 82 percent of trips in the Puget Sound region were made in personal cars. By contrast, in 1999, 86 percent of trips were made in personal cars.
That’s a mere 4% decrease in the course of 15 years, despite an increase in public transportation options. Simply put, even Seattle liberals are not all that interested in abandoning their personal vehicles.
Seattle’s war on cars also breaks a promise made to voters in 1990 — not that liberals care about whether or not they keep their promises. Via the Seattle Times:
“Nor does it fulfill promises made to city dwellers by the state Growth Management Act of 1990 — the original grand bargain. In return for accepting density and preserving rural areas, urban residents were promised infrastructure that would keep up with the growth.”
Seattle cannot sustain growth with its out-of-touch, irresponsible far-Left agenda. The costs are too high.
A 2014 state study revealed that “21,700 jobs and $3.6 billion in economic output will be lost if congestion increases 20 percent in the central Puget Sound region.”
That means Seattle’s war on cars is also a war on jobs. But maybe the City Council will tackle that problem by creating even more staff positions to handle the complaints from constituents who are stuck in traffic.