The conflict between Seattle’s progress and the way the city is going to deal with it is coming to a head.
This week, Mayor Ed Murray penned an op ed within the Seattle Occasions addressing the newspaper’s recent editorial that identified ways in which City Corridor is failing to plan for Seattle’s future.
The Occasions editorial, referred to as “Amazon Angst,” said that “Current progress isn’t a shock. What’s surprising is how poorly it’s been deliberate for by city leaders, leaving residents fuming as they sit in site visitors or stand cheek to jowl on overcrowded buses crawling previous building cranes.”
Already, we’ve seen a crazy real estate market, with tech staff including to the rising value of getting a spot to stay, and gridlocked traffic on par with New York City. Seattle is the third-fastest growing city within the nation, and over the subsequent 20 years it is estimated that one other 120,000 folks shall be dwelling right here.
Murray says his workplace is maintaining, although many don’t agree with that evaluation.
“Since taking workplace, I’ve been fastidiously laying the groundwork to accommodate progress,” Murray writes, including that the city is investing in parks, preschools, housing, transit and transportation.
He argues that inexperienced areas are essential for conserving Seattle livable. He’s additionally fashioned a committee to handle housing affordability and everybody’s different favourite subject: transportation. Mild rail to Capitol Hill and the College District is simply months away, with plans for a vote to increase the transportation community to West Seattle and Ballard.
“Boosting transit and making roads operate extra effectively is the easiest way to cut back congestion,” Murray writes.
In an opinion piece on GeekWire final week, guest writer John Spaid noted that Amazon’s progress in Seattle was too dangerous.
“Seattle must make historic infrastructure investments, after which help these investments by means of a growing diversified employment base,” he wrote.
As a former NYC resident, Seattle nonetheless appears like a small city to me, although anchored by massive corporations like Microsoft, Amazon, Expedia and Starbucks. And the addition of 120,000 our bodies over 20 years doesn’t seem to be that a lot, if it’s dealt with accurately.
As I escaped the hellish high quality of life NYC departs on its center class, I might hate to see the identical factor occur to Seattle, which is nonetheless thought-about one of the top five cities to stay within the nation.
There is an enormous chunk of the inhabitants who make too a lot to qualify for housing help, however rising rents will make it almost unattainable to afford to stay within the city on that $50,000 to $70,000 a 12 months wage.
Folks overlook that whereas you are engineering your software program and determining how you can ship bathroom paper by drones, that you nonetheless want nurses, firefighters, police, academics and a strong center class to maintain your city alive.
On the flip facet, you weed out the artists and creatives, and you get one boring-ass city, crammed with chain shops and eating places. You make it unattainable for normal folks to begin and maintain a enterprise going, and you start to lose what makes a city distinctive. (See: NYC).
Large corporations like Amazon have to be extra accountable in dealing with their inflow of individuals — and it will actually assist their staff out, too. Providing extra flex hours, permitting some to do business from home, how about implementing a 24-hour work schedule so folks can work in shifts as an alternative of gridlocking South Lake Union each morning and afternoon?
Change is coming, however far too sluggish. I, for one, would hate to see Seattle flip into one other NYC or San Francisco. What do you suppose? Are city leaders doing sufficient to maintain up?