This post originally appeared on Orphan Road.
They’re going to have a pretty narrow mandate:
Recent legislation requires mediators to focus solely on the most contested and complicated stretch of 520 — the section between the bridge’s western high-rise and Interstate 5. The more narrow focus should help avoid reopening a Pandora’s box of politically, financially or technically unfeasible ideas that have been discarded, Conlin said.
A four-lane “green alternative” and the Eastside Transportation Association-backed eight-lane alternative from Montlake to Redmond, for example, are off the table.
The legislation also mandates a six-lane bridge with four general-purpose and two HOV lanes, said Tom Fitzsimmons, Gov. Chris Gregoire’s chief of staff. “There may be a smaller footprint than six lanes going through Montlake, for example, but the corridor needs to accommodate four plus two,” he said.
This should keep the process relatively manageable.