Sunday, March 13, 2011
With all the horror in Japan as a result of the earthquake, I wondered about potential damage in my area, Seattle. Five to ten years ago, there was an extensive study to determine expected results from a mere 6.7 earthquake. Among many other awful things, the viaduct would fall, the seawalls would collapse and there would be numerous, minor tsunamis in the Sound. Well...Seattle intends to remove the viaduct and replace it with a tunnel. A tunnel! I can't even imagine how many people are sopping up the profits of such a venture. The tunnel would run right along, parallel to, and lower than the...seawall. That would be the same seawall that just fell into the water, taking all the docks with it. That would be the same Puget Sound that would be generating local tsunamis, swamping houses and businesses along the waterfront. Does anyone think the tunnel, not fifty feet from that same waterfront, would survive? Really?! That's all fill dirt along the waterfront. The tunnel would rupture and fill with water in a mere 6.7 earthquake. What of a more intense earthquake? Even in that 6.7 earthquake, hundreds of vehicles (and humans) could be crushed and/or drowned in this foolish tunnel. The tunnel idea should be abandoned immediately. There should either be a retrofit of the viaduct or it should be replaced by surface streets. This folly can only be the result of a tremendous amount of political scheming and palm-greasing. Stop the tunnel! Now!