billgatestunnelpost.jpg
gatesfoundation.org
Picking a fight with this guy might be a far easier way to kill the tunnel than a veto.
While Mike McGinn continues his

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Will the Gates Foundation Do What McGinn Can't--Throw a Wrench in the Tunnel Plan?

billgatestunnelpost.jpg
gatesfoundation.org
Picking a fight with this guy might be a far easier way to kill the tunnel than a veto.
While Mike McGinn continues his war on the tunnel (this week threatening to veto the plan if the state still insists on the city covering cost overruns), another battle has been building at the north end of the proposed viaduct replacement.

According to the Puget Sound Business Journal, the Gates Foundation says it will be sue the city if Seattle builds an access ramp to the tunnel underneath the Foundation's new headquarters near the Seattle Center.

The city's original plan for getting in and out of the tunnel on the north end, sending drivers to Mercer or I-5, cuts underneath the foundation's new campus. Gates Foundation chief administrative officer Martha Choe (who sat on the City Council from 1992 to 1999) tells PSBJ that building a ramp underneath would be disruptive to the foundation, "exposing the City to substantial tort damages."

The city is supposed to make a preliminary decision on the location of the access routes by October, with a final design plan due in July 2011.

McGinn's latest attempt to stop the tunnel is mostly for show--the plan has enough support on the city council to override a veto. But if he's really serious about killing it, he'll dig in and refuse to accommodate the Gates Foundation. Bogging the whole thing down in a design dispute--now that's how projects get derailed Seattle-style.

 
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