PubliCola’s detailed, insightful writeup of last week’s Mayoral forum is worth your time if you’re interested in this race. A few transportation-related answers stood out:
Q: Do you support tolling on I-90?
Yes: Burgess, Martin, Murray, and Steinbrueck
No: Harrell and Staadecker.
McGinn’s equivocation here is less surprising than it seems. McGinn spokesman Aaron Pickus says “The mayor supports tolling on I-90 only if some portion is dedicated to supporting transit. We need to support options for those that cannot afford tolls.”
Q: The city of London charges a congestion fee for cars to enter downtown. Do you support a similar charge or fee for downtown Seattle?
No: Burgess, Harrell, Martin, McGinn, Murray, and Staadecker.
Afterwards Peter Steinbrueck told me that by “maybe,” he meant “we should have access to all the available transportation demand management tools, and leave the door open for possible use of a congestion pricing mechanism or user fee in the future, should SOV-related traffic congestion downtown worsen to the point of total gridlock.”
Whatever you think of its immediate political feasibility, good for Mr. Steinbrueck for speaking well of a solution that reduces congestion, encourages alternative transportation, and raises useful revenue in the process.
More after the jump.
Q: Do you support zoning changes for microapartments (which are currently treated differently than studio apartments under city law because they have shared kitchens)?
The council is considering new regulations that would classify each living space in a microhousing building as an individual unit, triggering neighborhood notification and design review.
Yes: Burgess, Harrell, Martin, and McGinn.
Maybe: Murray, Staadecker, and Steinbrueck.
As Josh and Erica point out, it’s interesting that Steinbrueck, who has generally expressed enthusiasm about controls on density, answered this way. He didn’t respond to my question on this subject.
Q: Do you support expanding the city’s streetcar network?
Q: Do you support light rail expansion?
Q: Will you relax restrictions on sidewalk food vendors?
All three of these were unanimous “yes” answers. Although this doesn’t eliminate the capacity for hair-splitting about specific proposals*, this at least indicates we won’t have to endure generic anti-streetcar boilerplate coming out of City Hall for the next four years.
*And sometimes hair-splitting is justified! Streetcars are usually not a slam dunk, and ought to be scrutinized on a case-by-case basis.