How to Reduce Traffic--For Cheap!


You can always count on Harmon Shay to provide much-needed perspective on the political issues of the day. KUOW's traffic reciter, who apparently does not merit his own page on the KUOW site (perhaps he's undercover, like our Jonathan Kauffman?), noted this morning that an accident had caused a giant backup on 405 (both ways, of course--one side from the obstruction, the other from staring). Everyday I hear something similar, in fact. And yet there's never any mention of this in all the yearly articles about how bad our traffic congestion is, and how much time we're "losing" to it. Nor does the highway-building crowd ever say anything about it.

Of course, all we have to do is sign on to the RTID "Blueprint for Progress"--which would spend $7 billion on highway construction--and then also spend another $20 billion or so on expanding Sound Transit, and the result, RTID says, would "reduce total delay by 25 percent."

What a happy coincidence. Because according to a study by the Federal Highway Administration, accidents are what cause 25 percent of highway congestion. So what would be even cheaper than RTID is if all you nice folks listening to Harmon Shay didn't also weave in and out of lanes while chewing on a Big Eats. That's a plan I would fully endorse.

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