Kirkland Transportation Commission causes commotion | Letter
January 30, 2013 · Updated 2:40 PM
It’s time to do what’s right in Kirkland regarding its role in regional planning.
The Transportation Commission’s desire to attain regional transportation goals is reducing our quality of life, a life that includes the freedom of movement that can only be attained using cars?
Instead, the commission has created more traffic jams. Our traffic engineer has become a congestion engineer.
We moved here because Kirkland is a suburban city, a city that’s role is to provide regional housing, parks, fire and police protection, and infrastructure for those who can afford it. Our quality of life has become a standard that should not be degraded.
The commission’s desire for regional transit in Kirkland has been a failure. The Growth Management Act requires local communities to improve capital facilities that support regional transit. In Kirkland, that means buses. The city has refused to provide the necessary infrastructure to accommodate mass transit.
Buses unload their passengers at a rate of 45-60 people every 15 minutes in Kirkland, passengers get into their cars to go home. Almost all go through Kirkland. More traffic jams are not what we need.
More infrastructure is not what citizens want. They want their street to remain residential. Adequate infrastru cture that would prevent traffic jams are not what they want even though it would help prevent traffic jams. Residential streets may become collectors, collectors may become arterials, and arterials may become highways. So, what to do?
What the commission should do is prevent more growth from degrading our quality of life. Concurrency should be enforced and not manipulated to allow more growth without adequate infrastructure. The Growth Management Act calls for a six-year capital improvement program, not annual programs that are changed every year to accommodate growth. Kirkland is not in compliance with growth management.
Citizens who think their street is only a residential street when in fact their street has a greater function in preventing traffic jams, need to recognize what their street is and can be used for. If they don’t want it to change, it means less and possibly no more growth, so be it. To change it would degrade their quality of life.
The commission is overly concerned with global warming produced by cars. American cars are more highly regulated to prevent pollution. Some pollution from cars exist; however, much less due to federal guidelines. We’re not China.
Kirkland should remain a suburban city. I for one don’t want more traffic jams created by mass transit. Either provide the infrastructure or reduce growth.
The Cross Kirkland multiple transit proposals are good ones if planned properly. In the meantime, let’s hope the Transportation Commission stops degrading our quality of life. They need to keep Kirkland, Kirkland.
We don’t need more commission commotion that takes tax dollars out of our pockets to subsidize mass transit, including rail service in Seattle and Bellevue that will not benefit Kirkland and only cause us and other jurisdictions in the same situation problems.
Robert L. Style, Kirkland