Re: “How the cracked West Seattle Bridge will push city into debt” [ Aug. 6, Northwest]:
Temporary repairs to keep the West Seattle Bridge from falling down will cost between $160 to $225 million. It’s not a fix but merely keeps the bridge from falling down. All repair options are only good for a limited time and will require limitations on traffic below past usage levels.
The decision to replace the bridge is incredibly obvious. Let’s just pull down the bridge parts that are not strong enough to survive for the next 75 years.
We would be able to build a bridge with greater capacity than the current 100,000 vehicles and 25,000 transit passengers a day. Most people understand we will have to make it a toll bridge. At 100,000 vehicles a day, paying a $3 toll for each trip would yield in excess of $2 billion over 20 years. Selling 20 year bonds for a bridge carrying a huge amount of traffic daily seems possible. High quality municipal bonds are very popular.
Hopefully, the state and Sound Transit would participate financially to add light rail to the new bridge.
Let’s not sit around and study this project for two-plus years. Let’s actually build something that would pay for itself and be an asset to the community.
Robert Alexander, Seattle