Phew, I'm exhausted. This week was trauma and drama in Seattle. The Alaska Way Viaduct was closed all week. I believe most of my readers are Seattle natives, whether or not you currently live in Seattle, but a very quick recap for any who are not so lucky. The AWV was built in the early 50s and since then has happily carried cars from North to South/South to North along the water with a BEAUTIFUL view (well at least the upper deck folks get a beautiful view). Anywhoo, AWV blissfulness soured a bit with the after the 2001 earthquake when there was damage and people began to worry about 'the big one'. (People were probably worried before, but this was the first I heard of it.) Drivers now had to fear death if the earthquake hit mid trip. A bunch of downtown Seattle folks happily jumped on the bandwagon with a 'why do we have this monstrosity blocking our view of the water' argument and 10 years and lots of pre trauma drama later, we are starting our new tunnel project. (Lots of pre trauma drama including a new mayor who ran primarily on a 'the tunnel sucks' platform!)
The AWV was not a part of my life prior to moving to Beacon Hill. But, but since moving I have fallen madly in love.
- the view northbound is insane
- it gets one to Ballard with much less dodging and scooting around side streets than I5
- it's consistent. (I5 is very tempermental, sometime it will allow you to arrive in a timely manner, sometimes the traffic is a nightmare.)
Anyhow, they tore down half of it and opened up this strange detoured version of it that is guaranteed to slow things down and confuse people (I drove on it today and first couldn't find my entrance then missed my exit even though I saw the signs and was looking closely).
Many people seem to be nostalgic. I don't have an sadness, as it is uglier than ugly, but I'll miss the dreamy lightning fast (exaggeration) convenience. Goodbye viaduct.