I read this comment by “shoephone” at Washblog:
I was disappointed that Will produced a photo that presumes much and explains nothing. I’ll wait for the facts on what’s actually IN the study. Or file folder. Or pretty white and yellow binder.
I want to explain the binder in the photo, and exactly what is in it. First, this is from Mike Lindblom’s excellent story in the Seattle Times:
A previously unreleased report shows that when the state’s Alaskan Way Viaduct project team examined a four-lane-tunnel concept in January, the group thought the tunnel could handle the expected traffic.
Since then, the state Department of Transportation (DOT) reversed course, concluding Feb. 13 that the option nicknamed “Tunnel Lite” — in which cars would use the shoulders as exit-only lanes at peak times — would be unsafe. Gov. Christine Gregoire promptly declared she would only support a $2.8 billion six-lane elevated highway.
Staffers in the pro-tunnel administration of Seattle Mayor Greg Nickels say they’re outraged the DOT didn’t mention the 50-page report during weeks of intense public debate. A state DOT administrator called the report relatively insignificant and said the issues it covers have been aired in public.
The fifty page report mentioned in the article is, in fact, an executive summary of the eight hundred and fifty page report prepared by Parsons Brinckerhoff, well-known engineering firm.
WashDOT calls that 850 page report “relatively insignificant,” or a “glorified file memo.” That report, which approved of the Hybrid Tunnel, was ignored four weeks later when Governor Gregoire announced the Hybrid Tunnel wouldn’t work.
That’s the report in the binder. WashDOT flip flopped, and now they’re trying to hide it.