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Slog: Kemper Freeman Isn't Done Fighting Light Rail to Bellevue

By Erica C. Barnett April 21, 2011

Over at Slog, Eli Sanders has an interview with Bellevue developer Kemper Freeman, who says he isn't done pursuing a lawsuit to prevent Sound Transit from building light rail across I-90 to Bellevue, despite today's state supreme court ruling dismissing his claims.

Freeman tells Sanders, “I have a handful of pretty simple principles that I’ve lived my life by," he told me, "and one of those principles is that it’s never the right time to do the wrong thing.” Specifically, Freeman says, he'll probably take Sound Transit back to court after the agency finalizes agreements to run light rail on the I-90 bridge across Lake Washington.

He also has some thoughts about the engineering challenges of running trains across the bridge:
Specifically, by pointing out what he thinks may be dangerous flaws in the planning. Freeman contends that Sound Transit's own projections show the bridge at 98 percent of its weight carrying capacity when a light rail train—and only one light rail train—is crossing. "That has never been done in the history of the world," he said of the alleged plan to push the structure to up to 98 percent of what it can take.

Plus, he added, when a train crosses the bridge, “You put the entire bridge into a wave action… This is concrete. This thing will be expected to bend over and over and over again. No one can tell you what that means.” And, he has concerns about the containment of all the electricity that will be running over the bridge.

Read the whole interview here.
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