The Stranger’s Dominic Holden delivers what I believe to be the single best piece of reporting yet written about the deep-bore tunnel planned for downtown Seattle. Under the aegis of the question “what could go wrong?” Dominic takes a remarkably comprehensive look at the geology, technology, research, law, and politics surrounding the project.
This article—all 6,000 words of it—is an absolute must-read for anyone who wonders about the big hairy “cost overruns” question.
What I took away: there’s a lot we don’t know yet — and plenty to be concerned about. But perhaps the most salient point in the article is the one made by City Councilmember Mike O’Brien:
…O’Brien is pushing an amendment that would “reserve an option to void the agreement” if the bids come in too high or the environmental impact study shows that the tunnel would have enormous ramifications.
“You want me to sign a contract that is our last leverage point and you won’t tell me what it says until later?” O’Brien asks about the current version of the bill.