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Save Our Trail

Help preserve the Cross Kirkland Trail for future generations

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ST3 Threatens our Cross Kirkland Trail.

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Save Our Trail Joins Coalition

The Save Our Trail organization has joined a coalition formed by the group People for Smarter Transit to oppose ST3 as described in this information release issued by People for Smarter Transit.

People for Smarter Transit Coalition Formed to Say No To Sound Transit 3
Advocates for Better, Faster, and Cost-Effective Transit to more communities sooner announce NoST3.org

Thursday, June 23, 2016 – For Release After 1:30 pm PST – At Sound Transit’s June 23rd Board Meeting, People for Smarter Transit announced the formation of a bipartisan coalition of political leaders, citizen groups, transit riders, environmentalists, and concerned individuals who will be working to educate the public about the issues and concerns with the Sound Transit 3 (ST3) system plan and to promote faster, better, and cost-effective transit to more communities sooner.  The coalition welcomes others to join.

Unless Sound Transit holds off putting ST3 on the November ballot, People for Smarter Transit will be actively campaigning for a No vote on ST3 based on the following concerns:

  1. Traffic will increase. It does not solve the traffic problem. Sound Transit’s own planners, on June 6th, presented a ridership analysis that indicated ST3 will add 205 thousand new one-way transit boardings in 2040.  Even if this number is correct, this represents just 1% of the officially forecasted 19 million vehicle trips that will take place by 2040.

  2. Taxes that negatively impact low income & fixed income families increase. ST3 will significantly raise property taxes, the car tax, and bring the sales tax to over 10% in King County – forever.  ST3 increases Sound Transit’s sales tax by 55 percent, from 0.9 cents to 1.4 cents, and nearly quadruples its vehicle-license tax, from $30 to $110 per $10,000 of value..

  3. It is the most expensive way to attract new riders. It will cost over a half million dollars per new rider, since ST3 will cost $54 billion and only provide 102 thousand new round-trip riders.

  4. Real Estate developers, lawyers and construction firms pushing this plan. The Yes campaign (run by Transportation Choices) is funded by corporations that will directly profit from ST3’s $54 billion tax. The majority of donors to Transportation Choices (Sound Transit’s Yes on ST3 campaign organization, known as "Mass Transit Now") are transit industry corporations that directly benefit from Sound Transit projects through multi-million-dollar contracts.

  5. “It consumes the oxygen in the room.” (Senator Reuven Carlyle March 24, 2016 Seattle Times).  Basic, critical maintenance of our existing infrastructure ignored. There has been little discussion about the opportunity cost of hitting taxpayer wallets for so much money to achieve so little benefit.  This proposal goes after funding that should be used for schools

  6. There are faster, safer and more cost effective ways to solve the region’s transportation challenges.  ST3 has allocated 86% of its budget to low-capacity light rail, and yet we are in the midst of a transportation revolution with higher quality & capacity bus service, flexible van pooling, internet-dispatched ride sharing, car sharing, and zero-emission vehicle automation, to name a few.

The coalition was pleased to learn that many of its concerns were also expressed by The Seattle Times Editorial Board in its June 18, 2016 essay titled, “Hold off on Sound Transit 3 ballot measure — give discussion time”.  Go to Seattle Times.  Many projects have not been sufficiently researched and presented to the ST Board, the independent Expert Review Panel and the public before the system plan approval today to be put before the voters

Sound Transit has played, ‘hide the ball’ with the most basic information on the costs and benefits of their $54 billion ask. The June 20, 2016 letter from the Expert Review Panel states, “The ST3 system plan has a series of appendices. The panel received a draft of Appendix C, titled, ‘Benefits, Costs, Revenues, Capacity, Reliability and Performance Characteristics’, today. Because we have not had time to review the document thoroughly, we will provide any comments regarding this document in our final letter.”

This is irresponsible and screams “done deal.”

For more information on People for Smarter Transit, go to www.NoST3.org.  The web site details the concerns listed above, offers a tax calculator for individuals to see Sound Transit’s impact on his or her own tax situation, and ways to join and donate towards the coalition.

####

Contacts:  Frank Dennis, fld@franklindennislaw.com or John Niles, john@johnniles.com

 

Removal of Bellevue Spur Amendment

 
                                      Kirkland, WA

                                      Kirkland, WA

Sound Transit Board
401 S. Jackson Street
Seattle, WA 98104-2826

Dated: May 31, 2016

Subject: Removal of Bellevue Spur Amendment

Dear Chairman Dow Constantine and Sound Transit Board Members,

We are VERY disappointed that the light rail extension from the Wilburton station in Bellevue to the S. Kirkland P&R is now in the amended ST3 plan. Up until last Thursday, this project was NOT in the draft ST3 plan and as such, the general public was not able to provide input and comment on this addition. In fact, there was no documentation of cost and ridership available to the public before the comment period even ended.

In the 5/2/16 letter written by the City of Bellevue to ST, the City specifically outlined concerns with the Issaquah to Bellevue line and requested an in-depth analysis of the proposed system to determine the appropriate mode of transportation for future HCT. They suggested that the right mode may not even be light rail. In our opinion, the same concerns would also apply to this extension.

As for the environmental study, we are pleased that it has been expanded to include several North-South options; however, as we had specified previously, we want the options named in the final draft plan, such as I-405, Willows Road route and other North-South parallel routes.

We DO NOT support the ST3 plan based on these amendments as they stand in the ST3 draft plan and want the Bellevue Spur removed, first and foremost, and the environmental study options to be defined in the final plan. Thank you.

Sincerely,

Save Our Trail Leadership Team

David Greschler, Santos Contreras, and Jan Young

Cc:  Sound Transit CEO Peter Rogoff

Public Comment on Metro Long Range Plan

 
                                      Kirkland, WA

                                      Kirkland, WA

King County Metro Transit Kirkland, WA
401 5th Avenue, Suite 800
Seattle, WA 98104

Dated: May 31, 2016

Subject: Public Comment on Metro Long Range Plan

Dear King County Executive Dow Constantine and Deputy General Manager Victor Obeso,

We represent a group of concerned citizens in Kirkland whose main goal is to protect our 5.75 mile Cross Kirkland Corridor Trail from mass transit. We are also proponents of transit on I-405, using shoulder for bus only lanes and enhancing bus transit stations along the main arterial. The plans for BRT on I-405 are more economically feasible, serve many more riders on the East side and can be completed in a much shorter timeframe – a ‘quick’ win.

In the May 17, 2016 letter written by the Kirkland City Council, they requested consideration for refinements to the Metro long range plan as it is finalized, including 1) more connecting routes running along 520 to the S. Kirkland P&R and 2) using the Cross Kirkland Corridor for Metro service if BRT is selected as the mode of choice in Sound Transit’s study.

We agree that increasing connecting bus routes along 520 to the S. Kirkland P&R would be beneficial and cost efficient to Bellevue, Redmond, Seattle, and Kirkland. However, as this stop is often overcrowded during peak hours, we would also encourage Metro to enhance bus service on other major street routes between Kirkland, Google, Totem Lake, and Redmond that connect to stops along I-405. See our list of projects we support (Attached) and sent to the Sound Transit Board in an April 25, 2016 letter.

In that same letter, we made it clear that we are against:

  • Any HCT proposals on the Cross Kirkland Corridor Trail;
  • The Environmental Study (decision document of HCT options if only on the CKC); and
  • Light Rail or Any Mass Transit extension from Bellevue to S. Kirkland P&R.

Per the public comment surveys summarized recently by Sound Transit, the comments from East King County show BRT on I-405 as a top priority and also a priority of Snohomish County. Tax payers would be more inclined to vote for a package that includes integrated services which supports the top priority of BRT on I-405 and not transit on the Cross Kirkland Corridor Trail.

Sincerely,

Save Our Trail Leadership Team

David Greschler, Santos Contreras, and Jan Young

Cc:  Chris O’Clare, Manager of Strategy and Peformance


Attachment – Projects We Support

Re-direct the offered funding towards bolstering transit use of I-405 and other existing main arterials by adding the following:

  • Early deliverables such as bus only lanes on I-405 shoulder
  • Conduct an HCT study of light rail on I-405
  • Conduct an HCT study of extending light rail from downtown Redmond to Totem Lake (buses along this route would also serve the growing urban center of Totem Lake)
  • Additional in-line stop at NE 112th Street
  • Additional stop at NE 70th Street, instead of costly NE 85th Street station, and extending bus service to Google and to Microsoft
  • Transit oriented development at Kingsgate Park and Ride
  • Transit oriented development at Houghton Park and Ride (NE 70th Street)
  • Adding BRT route similar to popular 255 KC Metro route
  • Consider other possible parallel North-South street routes East of I-405 (116h Ave. NE, 132nd Ave. NE, 140th Ave. NE and/or 148th Ave Ne, with East-West bus lines to further link Kirkland to I-405 and Redmond
  • Add in-city circular transit routes on existing main streets to connect key areas within the city, such as other transit modes along Lake Washington Blvd, Central Way, Market Street, to Juanita Drive and/or 100th Ave. that connects East to major I-405 intersections.
  • Improve bicycle and pedestrian access to I-405 BRT

Sound Transit Board member and Mayor of Redmond John Marchione had expressed an interest in the NE 70th Street stop and the enhancement of routes connecting to Redmond.

Support of Full BRT on I-405

 
                                      Kirkland, WA

                                      Kirkland, WA

Sound Transit Board
401 S. Jackson Street
Seattle, WA 98104-2826

Dated: May 23, 2016

Subject: Support of Full BRT on I-405

Dear Chairman Dow Constantine and Sound Transit Board Members,

As you are aware from our May 5th letter, we strongly oppose the light rail extension from Bellevue to the S. Kirkland Park & Ride, as well as the Kirkland City Council’s added provision to build HCT on the Cross Kirkland Corridor Trail. As we have said repeatedly, the Council continues to change its position and does not represent the Kirkland voters. This time, we’ve discovered that the Council has chosen NOT to join surrounding cities in support of ‘Full BRT’ on I-405 per a joint letter dated April 28, 2016 and signed by the cities of Bellevue, Bothell, Renton, Clyde Hill, Newcastle and The Town of Beax Arts Village. See attached letter.

We want you to know that Save Our Trail supports this joint letter and agrees with the serious need for increased investment in a ‘Full BRT’ plan which includes center-running operations the length of the system, from Burien to Lynnwood, and serve in-line stops throughout the I-405 corridor. We see this as an obvious choice to how we want to spend our tax dollars more wisely and to better serve the Eastside connections.

The Bellevue Spur is priced at about $335 million. Instead, these dollars should be spent on the I-405 enhancements suggested by the joint letter and the 5/2/16 letter from the City of Bellevue. In addition, we also support one of the suggestions made by the Bellevue Chamber of Commerce for an in-line station and a parking structure at the underutilized Houghton Park & Ride at NE 70th St to meet the increased demand for parking. Perhaps the stop at NE 70th wouldn’t be as expensive as the proposed NE 85th stop.

Again, we want to be absolutely clear - we are resolutely against the Bellevue Spur proposal and will support the environmental study if other specific alternatives, like I-405 and Willows route, are also studied. As you near the final decision on ST3 projects, we thank you and your staff for listening to our views and supporting BRT on I-405.

Sincerely,

Save Our Trail Leadership Team

David Greschler, Santos Contreras, and Jan Young

Cc:  Sound Transit CEO Peter Rogoff
       Mayors of Bothell, Bellevue, Renton, Newcastle, Clyde Hill, and The Town of Beaux Arts Village and the Kirkland City Council


Attachment

 
 

April 28, 2016

Sound Transit Board
c/o Board Administrator
Sound Transit
401 S. Jackson Street
Seattle, WA 98104

Re: 1-405 corridor cities joint ST3 comment letter

Dear Chair Constantine and Members of the Board:

The cities of Bellevue, Renton, Bothell, Newcastle, and Clyde Hill and the Town of Beaux Arts Village appreciate the opportunity to provide feedback on the Draft Sound Transit 3 (ST3) System Plan. In the past nine months, through individual city comment letters, as well as through joint city communications, we have stated to the Board our urgent need for high quality transit projects in the I-405 corridor. The following shared comments are in addition to those from our individual jurisdictions.

The Eastside is a vital and growing area, and an integral component of the regional economic engine. Eastside cities are projected to reach nearly 700,000 residents and more than 550,000 jobs by 2040. We are interconnected both geographically and economically, and have many common interests and goals.

Our cities are united in our desire for quality High Capacity Transit (HCT) the length of the I-405 corridor, the transportation spine of the Eastside. This corridor connects the east to the north and to the south. It carries nearly a million trips of people to job and housing centers throughout the region every day, and the need for additional transit capacity is only growing.

The I-405 corridor needs a HCT investment consistent with that of light rail. Although we appreciate the inclusion of bus service on I-405 in the draft plan, what is described as "I-405 Bus Rapid Transit (BRT)" does not qualify as HCT, but rather regional express service with improved headways. Full BRT, as we have requested of the Board in our previous communications, and as envisioned in the I -405 Master Planning effort that was sponsored by Sound Transit and WSDOT, is the equivalent of light rail on rubber tires.

Full BRT will include center-running operations the length of the system and serve in-line stops throughout the I-405 corridor. As described in the draft plan, there are no in-line stops planned north of Kirkland, and perhaps even more concerning, no stops at all between downtown Bellevue and south Renton. Full BRT will also include branded vehicles with multiple doors for entry/exit, designed to "dock" with stations to eliminate a step-up onto the bus, and off-board fare collection. We have seen little evidence of these characteristics of full BRT in the draft plan.

We again ask the Board to work with Sound Transit staff to deliver full BRT in the I-405 corridor, as described in the WSDOT/Sound Transit I-405 Master Plan. We understand that building a BRT system the equivalent of light rail on rubber tires is costly. To offset these costs and to maximize taxpayer transportation investments, it is essential that Sound Transit work in close coordination with WSDOT during the continuous build-out of l-405 to capitalize on one-another's efforts. The Board should consider dedicating funds for further study of additional I-405 system BRT stations to help plan for this coordination and to prepare for ST4. Our jurisdictions are ready to work with Sound Transit and WSDOT staff to identify the most expedient locations for stops in every segment of the corridor as planning continues to move forward.

Lastly, for BRT to be successful, there must be a robust bus feeder system in place. Sound Transit should preserve the 600,000 regional bus service hours outlined in the draft plan throughout the duration of the ST3 package to ensure a high quality bus network continues to
feed riders to the system. These investments should include adding service to overcrowded and high ridership routes.

ST3 has the potential to create transit connections within the Eastside, and provide connections between the Eastside and the rest of the region. It is critical that our cities, Sound Transit and WSDOT work in unison to address the important ties between land use and transportation in the early planning phases of ST3 to realize the maximum potential of this regional investment.

Thank you for considering our comments as we plan for our region's future mobility.

Sincerely,

 
 

Response to Bellevue Spur

 
                                      Kirkland, WA

                                      Kirkland, WA

Sound Transit Board
401 S. Jackson Street
Seattle, WA 98104-2826

Dated: May 5, 2016

Subject: Public Comment re: LRT Bellevue Spur to S. Kirkland Park & Ride

Dear Chairman Dow Constantine and Sound Transit Board Members,

We want you to know that Save Our Trail strongly opposes the light rail extension from Bellevue to the S. Kirkland Park & Ride. We repeat our position in light of the fact that during the latest Kirkland City Council meeting on May 3rd they voted to support the extension “subject to the following provisions” which demands “a provisional “dotted line” of extended HCT service along the CKC to Totem Lake is included in the ST3 plan, in the event that the SKPR project costs less than anticipated or more federal dollars are secured."

We have stated that we opposed the extension because we feared it would be the first step to future transit on the entire Trail. Kirkland’s actions now show that this could happen in ST3. Here are other reasons we oppose the Bellevue Spur

  • :The Spur conflicts with the intent of the Environmental Study to study the Trail before anything is built. This is truly an example of putting the passenger car before the locomotive!
  • The proposal cost of $335 million dollars for only 2 miles is exorbitant.
  • There is no real time savings for commuters. In the City proposal, the city calculates that taking the 235 bus from Totem Lake to the S. Kirkland P&R and then a transfer to light rail would take only 37 minutes versus the normal 44 minute ride. Currently, the 535 ST Express bus from Totem Lake to Bellevue only takes 12 minutes with no transfer. Which is the obvious choice for riders?
  • The Spur would impact traffic near the park and ride. Traffic congestion around the park and ride will only increase and will not resolve the neighborhood traffic issues.

Regarding the Environmental Study, we would like to clarify our position that we stated in the 4/25/16 letter to you. If the intent is to solely build transit on the Trail, then we will not support it. However, we will support it if other alternative routes are also studied, like transit on I-405.

We want to be absolutely clear - we are resolutely against the Bellevue Spur proposal and any HCT plan affecting the CKC and will not support ST3 if proposals like these are included. We would like to continue to collaborate with you and your staff in making sure that we are able to fully support the ST3 plan in November

.

Sincerely,

Save Our Trail Leadership Team

David Greschler, Santos Contreras, and Jan Young

Cc:  Sound Transit CEO Peter Rogoff
       City Of Kirkland Council members

Response to ST3 Draft Plan

 
                                      Kirkland, WA

                                      Kirkland, WA

Sound Transit Board
401 S. Jackson Street
Seattle, WA 98104-2826

Dated: April 25, 2016

Subject: Public Comment to ST3 Draft Plan

Dear Chairman Dow Constantine and Sound Transit Board Members,

We applaud your decisions not to include bus or light rail on the Cross Kirkland Corridor Trail and strongly encourage you to stay the course and continue to support early deliverables and transit alternatives on I-405. We refute the Kirkland City Council’s letter dated 4/19/16 and want to clearly state that the City Council does NOT represent the views of the people of Kirkland.

After further review of the ST3 draft plan, we are very concerned to learn that the Trail is still under threat of future high capacity transit (HCT). The proposal to include an environmental study sets the stage for deciding on mass transit on the Trail and does nothing to alleviate the traffic problems that currently face Eastside communities. We are also aware of discussions to extend light rail from Bellevue to the South Kirkland Park & Ride. Again, this is seen as a costly precursor to pursuing HCT on the Trail rather than focusing on other economically feasible alternative routes. We absolutely disagree with this approach and ask that you exclude these from the final ST3 plan and any future transit plans:

  • Any HCT proposals on the CKC;
  • The Environmental Study (decision document of HCT options on the CKC); and
  • Light Rail or Any Mass Transit Extension from Bellevue to S. Kirkland P&R.

As outlined in your March 24th letter to the Kirkland City Council, you stated the need to also focus on new BRT I-405 stations, move passengers East and West between Totem Lake, downtown Kirkland and downtown Redmond and improve bike and pedestrian access. We support this focus and attached is a list of possible projects that ST3 funds should be used for to meet the needs you outlined (Attachment A). Use of tax payer monies to enhance transit on I-405 should be the top priority – it would have a greater chance for voter approval in Kirkland than other costly projects involving or threatening the Trail (see Attachment B for cost per rider comparisons).

We want to be perfectly clear that our stance has not changed – we will actively work to defeat the passage of ST3 in November if there is any plan or study to include mass transit on our Trail. Our opposition would lead to a large negative vote from the citizens of Kirkland. We would like to continue to collaborate with you and your staff in making sure that we are able to fully support the ST3 plan in November.
 

Sincerely,

Save Our Trail Organization

Cc:  Sound Transit CEO Peter Rogoff
       City Of Kirkland Council members

 

Attachment A – Projects We Support

Re-direct the offered funding towards bolstering transit use of I-405 and other existing main arterials by adding the following:

  • Early deliverables such as bus only lanes on I-405 shoulder
     
  • Conduct an HCT study of light rail on I-405
     
  • Conduct an HCT study of extending light rail from downtown Redmond to Totem Lake
     
  • Additional in-line stop at NE 112th Street
     
  • Additional stop at NE 70th Street, instead of costly NE 85th Street station, and extending bus service to Google and to Microsoft
     
  • Transit oriented development at Kingsgate Park and Ride
     
  • Transit oriented development at Houghton Park and Ride (NE 70th Street)
     
  • Adding BRT route similar to popular 255 KC Metro route
     
  • Consider other possible parallel North-South street routes East of I-405 (116h Ave. NE, 132nd Ave. NE, 140th Ave. NE and/or 148th Ave NE, with East-West bus lines to further link Kirkland to I-405 and Redmond
     
  • Add in-city circular transit routes on existing main streets to connect key areas within the city, such as other transit modes along Lake Washington Blvd, Central Way, Market Street, to Juanita Drive and/or 100th Ave. that connects East to major I-405 intersections.
     
  • Improve bicycle and pedestrian access to I-405 BRT

Sound Transit Board member John Marchione had expressed an interest in the NE 70th Street stop and the enhancement of routes connecting to Redmond.

Attachment B – Cost Comparisons of BRT/LRT on Trail vs BRT on 405 and other ST3 Projects

Beyond the fact that the Bellevue Spur (LRT extension to the S. Kirkland P&R) is a precursor to adding transit on the CKC Trail, this proposal, as with LRT and BRT on the Trail, is unacceptable due to high cost and low ridership issues. The capital cost per rider of $289K is astronomical, making it the costliest of all the ST3 proposals. The operating costs are also the highest of all ST3 projects. The S. Kirkland P&R parking garage is already at full capacity during the work week and the stop would not help to resolve traffic congestion nor enhance connectivity within the city of Kirkland.

Comparison of Cost per Rider for ST3 Projects

Source: The highest costs and highest ridership numbers were used consistently for all comparisons. Bellevue Spur data from original E03a plan and other data from 3/24/16 ST3 draft plan templates. The Bellevue Spur data represents one-fourth of the total E03a (2 miles of 8 miles, 1 stop out of 4), with ridership at 1,250.

Here Are Ways to Get Involved!

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Thank you for your support.

Either

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.Rich Jones DBA Save Our Trail

6297 105th Ave NE
Kirkland WA 98033

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Three ways you can help Save Our Trail

1.  Educate yourself about the facts

Learn the facts. 

Knowledge is power. Learn all you can on this subject. It's complex.

Check out the Learn More section of this website.

2.  Tell your friends and neighbors

Share via Social Media. 

Share and Like our Facebook posts. Use the hashtag #saveourtrail.

Download a Print At Home Flyer

3.  Write a Letter to the Editor

Speak out. Be heard.

Share your thoughts on the trail with our community. It really makes a difference!

Send your letters to:

Editor of Kirkland Views editor@kirklandviews.com Editor of Kirkland Reporter mphelps@kirklandreporter.com

Kirkland City Council citycouncil@kirklandwa.gov

Sound Transit Board EmailAllBoardMembers@soundtransit.org

Voices in Support of Trail Preservation

Organizations

Click to read letters to Sound Transit from organizations who support preserving the Trail!

Eastside Audubon

Puget Sound Anglers

Community

Comments made by friends and neighbors:

What a treasure the Cross-Kirkland Corridor is! 

I live close to the access points in Crestwoods Park, one of which - the north end - can accommodate my hybrid bike. I frequently use it to get to Totem Lake (Urban Coffee Lounge, and Gold's Gym). 

Tonight I took it the other direction, and discovered some great new access points; one that allows you onto 106th Ave NE near Metro Market (where I cross NE 68th to go to PCC), and another that has been resurfaced and makes for an easier ride up a steep hill, connecting you to NE 60th Street, which brings you past Northwest College, and up the hill to 114th Ave NE which will take you behind the college to one of the entrances to Watershed Park. At the end of NE 60th Street is also the footbridge that crosses I-405 at the NW corner of Bridle Trails State Park. 

My two-hour excursion this evening included cottonwood snow, choruses of frogs, lots of running rabbits, a snake (who was just trying to cross the road!), and a large, and startled coyote (behind Chainline Brewing). I had great vantages of Lake Washington and the Olympic Mountains, and from the SE corner of Watershed Park, a great view of Mount Rainier. I rode down to the creek at Watershed and was treated to the evening symphony of birds amid the gurgling and splashing of Watershed Creek.

So glad I ventured out tonight! -- Wesley Andrews

The Cross Kirkland Trail is a cherished green space for our residents and wildlife and serves as a natural buffer to the environmental impacts of increasing density in our community. -- Michelle Sailor

To say the least I think this is an insane idea. I cannot possibly fathom how any potential benefit of a bus line across this path is going to do anything remotely tangible to help any traffic problems. The cost would be astronomical versus the ROI. All I seem to get from the council are excuses like, "It was always part of the plan", or "$250,00 was spent on a study and that study showed, blah, blah." The idea is terrible in theory, but the bus idea specifically is really stupid. -- Rob Burns

No way. -- Christina Brugman

Please keep busses on I-405 where they belong, using the two toll lanes and special HOV ramps that were designed to serve busses (and certainly provide nothing for carpoolers who use the NE 85th exit into Bellevue). The new trail is a real gem, like Marina Park downtown. There's no need to pave over wetlands and ruin neighborhoods and cause safety issues for Peter Kirk Elementary and Kirkland Middle School students. -- David Wall

I am opposed to buses running on the trail. This is the most stupid Idea the city of Kirkland has come up with yet. -- Albert Hern

Putting buses on the CKC is the worst kind of bait and switch government. Not just no, but HELL NO. -- Curt Blake

To say the least I think this is an insane idea. I cannot possibly fathom how any potential benefit of a bus line across this path is going to do anything remotely tangible to help any traffic problems. The cost would be astronomical versus the ROI. All I seem to get from the council are excuses like, "It was always part of the plan", or "$250,00 was spent on a study and that study showed, blah, blah." The idea is terrible in theory, but the bus idea specifically is really stupid. -- Rob Burns

Just when the people along the Cross Kirkland Corridor finally felt some safety and security in their property values, now it appears that the government is rapidly trying to ruin them again. Everyone agrees that the bus system is broken in its current state, if not, take a ride on the bus and see for yourself. Running buses down a nature corridor next through neighborhoods, next to schools and through awkward street crossings is just about the worst idea imaginable.  

I urge the county to reconsider this and urge the city to actually fight in the best interests of the people for once and oppose this. To whom it may concern, the residents of Kirkland DO NOT WANT THIS. Leave the Cross Kirkland Corridor Trail in tact as it sits. Feel free to make improvements to the pedestrian crossings but do not fill the trail with any sort of trains, buses, taxicabs or otherwise.

Do not believe the lies of contractors and corporations who will try to convince you of some new pavement, electric bus or other product that is going to make this all bearable. None of those things make it acceptable to carve out a 100 foot wide path through an environmentally sensitive area.

Here's some advice to Kirkland. Pull out your handbook of environmental restrictions that you like to apply to everyone's residential projects and apply them to this. Please do this before wasting hundreds of thousands of my tax dollars on environmental feasibility studies and then environmental mitigations in an attempt to force this project to work that no one wants. -- Geordy Rostad

This is really sad this is happening once again. We had to save our parks from ARC and here they go again trying to take away the corridor. There are so few places to walk here. We are already chocked full of bus exhaust and it certainly would decimate the trail. If KCC wants to do something good, they should have fought against losing a lane on 405, just so Olympia can tax those of us who live here. How did we get chosen to pay that extra tax anyway? -- Jennifer McWethy

As a city we take great pride in our natural resources, exceptional park and natural areas, and recreation opportunities. Developing the CKC into a transit corridor is antithesis to the city's stated mission and goals of "preserving the City's existing charm and natural amenities" and "protection of the natural environment." -- Kelli Curtis

Love this new trail! lets find a way to keep it a trail for walking biking running meeting up with friends and family! -- Nancy Edgers

Let's show the City that we don't want buses or rail on the trail. Keep transit on the I-405! Attend the Council meeting on Tuesday and attend the Open House on Thursday. Wear Green to visually show your support. Let's keep our trail natural. -- Suzanne Welton

My wife and I moved to Kirkland a year ago and the clincher for making the move was the beauty and availability of the CKC. As a runner, dog-walker and bike rider I love the trail. We should preserve the beauty of the trail and continue to enhance that beauty over the years. We should not pollute the trail with the noise and distractions that come with rail and/or buses. Let's not disturb its natural beauty. The CKC is a treasure that should be cultivated and enhanced, not diminished to accommodate traffic - rapid transit belongs on the existing highways built for that purpose. -- Jonathan Stutz

Public transportation for Kirkland connecting to the greater eastside n Seattle metro areas is vital for our economy and the people who rely on safe, inexpensive transportation. The issues of bus traffic and the increasing traffic congestion throughout the region needs to be addressed. Using the CKC makes no sense for metro light rail n Metro bus lines. The trail runs mostly through low density residential housing and is only 5.75 miles. The CKC better serves its current use as nature trail for the public to use as walk, run, and biking trail. Metro light rail n busses would be much better served access the areas the riders need to go, which is not in our low density residential housing areas. King county metro transportation needs to take a page from areas like Santa Clara County, CA VTA Light Rail and Bay Area Caltrain systems, which serve the needs of public transportation very well and are linked together. -- Richard Jordan

You guys should set up a petition at change.org - this will be way easier to sign than sending separate emails to all these addresses (which probably will end up in their spam folder anyway) and something that you can track and show to the authorities. I strongly support your position of course - I use the trail on my bike often to work and with kids on the weekends. -- Boris Bobrov

One thing I would add to the Save Our Trail message is that the 255 Bus will be re-routed AWAY from 108th Ave NE. That will affect a lot of Houghton residents who take daily to work in Seattle. -- Shawn Etchevers

As a strong supporter of walking, biking and transit, I am very disappointed at the city's plan to sell out our trail. The Cross-Kirkland trail is a real gem, and is one of a very few places to walk that has virtually no traffic noise.

While the right-of-way may physically exist to run buses alongside the trail, it is impossible to do so without completely destroying the aesthetics. The construction of the busway would replace trees and greenery with concrete, as well as force the permanent closure of many trail access points in the name of "safety". It would also subject trail users to constant noise of diesel engines, especially during rush hour, with buses running every 2-3 minutes. The SODO busway trail is a good indicator of what the ultimate result would be - technically usable, yes, pleasant, no.

And all this for a bus corridor that is not even really necessary. Curves and safety considerations would limit buses to around 35 mph, so, even from a transit perspective, the Cross-Kirkland Trail would not be a viable replacement for buses down I-405, especially with the newly opened express toll lanes available. For local bus service, parallel roads, such as 108th Ave. and Lake Washington Blvd. receive only light to moderate traffic, even during rush hour, so it is not necessary to take over the trail to achieve quality bus service. If money is available to improve the quality of bus service in Kirkland, it should be spent on running existing bus routes more frequently, instead. I hope the city will listen to us and not sell out our unique asset for a bus corridor that is not necessary. -- Eric Feiveson

NO buses on the trail! This is the most stupid idea the Kirkland City Council has come up with yet. -- Albert Hern

I do not agree with putting bus rapid transit on the CKC. I do not support council members who promote this diminution of a beautiful Kirkland natural resource & irreplaceable Quality-of-Community-Life asset. Bus rapid transit belongs with vehicles on I-405. -- Rich Bergdahl

I strongly support the Save Our Trail organization. This green space is crucial to maintaining the healthy lifestyle of our Kirkland community. It is an unusually unique and wonderful way for our schools, neighborhoods and the entire community to connect. -- Kristine Isaacson

Our family moved to Kirkland in 2012. One of the reasons we chose to move here (as opposed to Bellevue) was Kirkland's commitment to preserving its parks and other natural settings which we feel contributes to the city's healthy vibe. We were thrilled when the trail opened - our family is out there most afternoons and nights when the weather allows. We were even more thrilled when businesses, such as Google, supported the trail further by building a playground and zip line on it for kids. It demonstrated that the city council was able to convey to businesses like Google, their commitment to preserving a sense of community.  Allowing bus lines to cut through would not only be questionable (I'm not sure of many public bus lines that people take that cut through residential areas), but would disrupt the harmony of both its residents and its natural setting. As a new resident to Kirkland, if I had known what I know now about this proposal, I would not invest in looking for a home here. I'm sure I'm not the only rational person to think this. While a home is a home, it is also an investment and I think this proposal would cause home prices in Kirkland to go down, to be frank. The fact is, our healthy environment is an asset, and our natural setting (near the water - which by the way, the bus lines or the proposed trees that would act as sound barriers, would obscure a good number of home views), along with other resources (such as good schools and close proximity to other bigger cities) makes Kirkland unique. To make a poor decision on this could really have a huge adverse impact on Kirkland's character. I really hope the trail stays and that the city remains committed in preserving Kirkland's character and sense of community. -- Susan Shin Robinson

Let's keep our corridor for pedestrians and bikes! Buses and trains stay on the transit corridors we already have like 405 and 108th/6th. -- Terri Butler

Putting trains on the trail is a bad idea! -- Bruce Butler