The Eastside Transportation Association hosted an informational event for the state legislators and candidates to provide them with information about the transportation issues affecting the eastside to prepare them before they get into office, including facts they won’t get from WSDOT. I was invited to provide a presentation regarding the toll lanes. I was permitted to record the event in its entirety (excluding the Q&A) and post it like I often do for other public meetings I attend. The Q&A had some great questions and I was able to present many details I didn’t have time for in my presentation. In fact, about half the questions were directed at me regarding the toll lanes. I would write about them if only I could remember them. Hopefully future events I will be permitted to simply publish the entire meeting.
Here is the video and the slide deck. I am the third speaker to present (time position 28:45). (if you receive this article as an email, you may need to visit the article to see the media.)
Some observations regarding their event: I was thankful to see representation from all political parties present and appreciative of those who took the time to attend and show an interest in what this group had to share. In the political climate these days, there are few issues that don’t have an ideological basis that seem to keep us from finding solutions that are acceptable to people on all sides. This Win-Lose mentality seems to be becoming embedded into our culture. I have found that of all the political topics, transportation has about the best hope of achieving a Win-Win outcome with all parties. Much like the Non-Zero Sum Game explained here by Stanford University. While portions of the other presentations leaned to the right, they were based on good research. Even though transportation does not split down party lines, the more politically balanced the group, the more willing people are to accept the ideas. Kudos to those political leaders who attended and were willing to listen to people who may have different viewpoints. In the process you are either going to strengthen your arguments; change your mind about your position; find a compromise that works for both people; or at least gain respect your differences. This is where the best solutions come from.
” find a compromise that works for both people; or at least gain respect your differences ” This is exactly what so many political debates are missing! Nice work!
The problem is “Smart Growth”. It’s very simple math.
Exponential growth causes more and more demands on a transportation system that cannot possibly keep up.
If you grow a city at 6% per year, following the “rule of 72” the number of people in that city will double every 12 years. Slower growth simply slows the time to double. 4% = 18 years.
Double the number of people = Double the number of cars, garages, etc. and the number of city streets and freeway lanes to support the same traffic flow. But freeways cannot grow the number of lanes any more. We’re done with building more lanes.
A freeway that has 5 lanes can carry more traffic than two parallel freeways, one with two lanes and the other with three. This is a bit more complicated, but it’s well known queuing theory. A five lane freeway supported by car tab sales does not generate money for some billionaire selling toll lane equipment. Toll lanes on the freeways increases the congestion.
We’re done. Stop the growth.
The rule of 72 is used to estimate exponential growth, often by finance and investors. However, it applies to all exponential growth – investments, population growth, nuclear explosions, etc.
BTW, I do fully understand that the current fight is about borrowing money legally for large projects. We are being drawn into arguing some nit-picky point rather than paying attention to the 60,000 foot view — the exponential growth. Smart growth is exponential growth.