Highways are, of course, an essential part of our national transportation system. Trouble is, at least in urban areas, they seem to go right through the areas that you would rather not see them go through. For instance, Seattle’s Puget Sound coastline. Now, I’ve been to Seattle, and while I was there, I stayed in a hotel about a block away from the bustling waterfront, busy shopping areas and active nightlife. The only thing between me and the sights was a giant, towering road known as the Alaskan Way Viaduct. It’s elevated, so getting across it wasn’t a problem. That’s not the point. It’s big – about five stories. It’s loud. It’s a mass of bright lights at night. And, if it weren’t there, I would’ve be able to see across Puget Sound from my hotel room.
Thus, you can imagine my delight when I discovered that the Alaskan Way Viaduct is, in fact, number one on the Congress for the New Urbanism’s “Freeways Without Futures” – a list of the top ten freeways in North America that we really could just do without. And they’re not roads that people are just running around complaining about – these roads actually have pleasant, viable alternatives that would free up valuable urban real estate and drive economic growth. Check out the article for the full list of roads, and if you live in one of those areas, consider adding your voice to the growing number of people calling for reasonable alternatives.
(Via Wired Magazine)