This letter is in reference to the Renton Reporter’s article of Feb. 19, addressing I-405 congestion and the 30th street overpass and its I-405 on/off-ramps. The city of Renton’s proposed solutions leaves me baffled to the City’s commitment and planning to resolve the I-405 congestion and the 30th street overpass and access ramps to I-405.
The article states that the City has studied the problem for two years and their answer is to eliminate the limited transit parking to build a queue lane so traffic going south or down 30th can get past those going north onto I-405. This backup goes for blocks due to the lack of capacity and planning on I-405.
Much of the traffic attempting to enter the northbound I-405 at 30th are not Kenndydale residents but are coming from Maple Valley and other areas, coming up Sunset to Aberdeen to Northeast 27th Street to avoid the congestion at the Northeast Park Street I-405 onramp. The proposed solution sounds futile to me.
If WSDOT is allowed to proceed with their plans for only one additional lane each direction – and those lanes being toll lanes without a center lane exit at 30th – just imagine trying to access or exit I-405 at 30th with all of the semi-trucks and cars in the outer lane and those in the center or toll lanes to move over to exit at 30th
The prosed center lane fly-bridge for the SR167 and I-405 also fails to address the traffic from SR167 to northbound I-405 adding congestion to the bulk of traffic having to merge onto I-405. This project appears to be another expensive concession to transit which appears to be consuming the majority of WSDOT’s transportation dollars, supposedly for traffic congestion relief (without actually providing any).
I’m disappointed in the City of Renton’s elected and appointed officials for not demanding from WSDOT similar access construction and lane increases which have been provided to Bellevue and other I-405 northern cities. If not for my neighbors and my efforts in 1995 when the State last widened this section of I-405 there would be no noise walls along the Kenndydale hill and beyond today.
The City officials failed to represent its residents then, as it appears to be the case now.