What To Do With Seattle's Elevated Highway

<p>PBS's NewsHour covers the debate over the future of downtown Seattle's raised highway -- an issue that has a renewed sense of importance after the Minnesota bridge collapse.</p>
September 1, 2007, 5am PDT | BrettMSchmidt
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"After the bridge collapse in Minnesota, the debate over what to do with the Alaskan Way Viaduct, an aging raised highway in Seattle, has gotten even more intense."

"Built in the 1950s and damaged by an earthquake in 2001, engineers say it could collapse in the next quake. Some repairs have been made, but on the federal bridge sufficiency scale, the viaduct has a rating of only nine out of 100. The Minnesota bridge had a much better rating of 50."

"The underside of the Seattle road has cracks, exposed rebar, and weakening concrete. Even before the Minnesota disaster, Washington state said it would spend $5 million this year and $175 million next year to patch up some spots, but it said the only real solution is to replace the viaduct. That could take 10 years."

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Published on Thursday, August 23, 2007 in NewsHour with Jim Lehrer
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