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Seattle uses eminent domain to seize a parking lot from a 103 year old woman

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Seattle uses eminent domain to seize a parking lot from a 103 year old woman

Old 10-25-13, 11:35 AM
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Seattle uses eminent domain to seize a parking lot from a 103 year old woman

http://www.bizjournals.com/seattle/n...-vader-in.html

and they'll turn that seized parking lot into a ... wait for it ... ANOTHER PARKING LOT!!!
“Without this legislation,” they write, Seattle's government “miss an opportunity to address the limited supply of public, short-term parking,” which “will result in lost revenue to the City.”
By this logic, couldn't Seattle just seize Microsoft or Starbucks? Think about all the revenue Seattle is losing by not taking over Microsoft. How dare the private sector earn money!

But at least they plan on running their seized parking lot themselves and not using eminent domain to take from the private sector and give to the private sector.
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Old 10-25-13, 11:38 AM
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Re: Seattle uses eminent domain to seize a parking lot from a 103 year old woman

I hope Seattle had the wherewithal to shout "Shut up you old bag!" while they were doing this.
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Old 10-25-13, 11:46 AM
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Re: Seattle uses eminent domain to seize a parking lot from a 103 year old woman

I had a feeling that I knew why they wanted to ED the parking lot before I even opened the article. I was right:

The city wants to acquire the 103-year-old Spokane woman’s property at 1101 Western Ave. to offer a place for tourists and others to park during the years of construction of the $2.1 billion tunnel that will replace the Alaskan Way Viaduct.
I spent several days in Seattle a few years ago and experienced firsthand the "joys" of commuting around the city. When I subsequently heard that they had no choice but to soon tear down the Viaduct, I was immediately overcome with the thought, "man, that is going to suuuuuuuuuuuuuck."

Part of the waterfront parking problem is that a substantial chunk of the existing waterfront parking is comprised of surface lots that are directly underneath the Viaduct. No doubt these lots will have to all be closed for some time just for the dismantling of the expressway, even if the tunnel construction doesn't also necessitate it.

If the city would just openly admit that they wish to acquire the lot in question to build a parking garage, I would truthfully not have a big problem with it. More parking garages adjacent to the waterfront are clearly going to be needed if much of the existing parking goes bye-bye. However, if they continue to insist that they wish to ED a surface lot just to keep it a surface lot, that cannot really expect their plans to pass a smell test.
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Old 10-25-13, 11:48 AM
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Re: Seattle uses eminent domain to seize a parking lot from a 103 year old woman

Myrtle? I do believe you have to be over 80 to have that name.

Anyone think this is defensible?
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Old 10-25-13, 11:51 AM
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Re: Seattle uses eminent domain to seize a parking lot from a 103 year old woman

Originally Posted by jfoobar View Post
I spent several days in Seattle a few years ago and experienced firsthand the "joys" of commuting around the city. When I subsequently heard that they had no choice but to soon tear down the Viaduct, I was immediately overcome with the thought, "man, that is going to suuuuuuuuuuuuuck."

Part of the waterfront parking problem is that a substantial chunk of the existing waterfront parking is comprised of surface lots that are directly underneath the Viaduct. No doubt these lots will have to all be closed for some time just for the dismantling of the expressway, even if the tunnel construction doesn't also necessitate it.

If the city would just openly admit that they wish to acquire the lot in question to build a parking garage, I would truthfully not have a big problem with it. More parking garages adjacent to the waterfront are clearly going to be needed if much of the existing parking goes bye-bye. However, if they continue to insist that they wish to ED a surface lot just to keep it a surface lot, that cannot really expect their plans to pass a smell test.
Even then, I'd say it is wrong. We want to take what you have and develop it more. Has to be a better way to do it. Offer a low interest, or no interest loan to her to build a parking garage, for example.

If this were being turned into a park, I'd be okay with it. But if they want to take a car wash because they want a car wash, that would be wrong. Same with this.
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Old 10-25-13, 11:53 AM
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Re: Seattle uses eminent domain to seize a parking lot from a 103 year old woman

Originally Posted by jfoobar View Post
If the city would just openly admit that they wish to acquire the lot in question to build a parking garage, I would truthfully not have a big problem with it. More parking garages adjacent to the waterfront are clearly going to be needed if much of the existing parking goes bye-bye. However, if they continue to insist that they wish to ED a surface lot just to keep it a surface lot, that cannot really expect their plans to pass a smell test.
If the supply of parking will go down and the demand for parking will go up, why does the government need to solve this problem? I've been to lots of cities in the United States where private companies own and operate parking lots. What makes Seattle unique?
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Old 10-25-13, 12:19 PM
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Re: Seattle uses eminent domain to seize a parking lot from a 103 year old woman

Originally Posted by RoyalTea View Post
and they'll turn that seized parking lot into a ... wait for it ... ANOTHER PARKING LOT!!!
I don't think that's how that song goes.
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Old 10-25-13, 12:30 PM
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Re: Seattle uses eminent domain to seize a parking lot from a 103 year old woman

Originally Posted by kvrdave View Post
Myrtle? I do believe you have to be over 80 to have that name.

Anyone think this is defensible?
Eh, I don't think Myrtle is that bad a name.
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Old 10-25-13, 12:31 PM
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Re: Seattle uses eminent domain to seize a parking lot from a 103 year old woman

Originally Posted by Groucho View Post
I hope Seattle had the wherewithal to shout "Shut up you old bag!" while they were doing this.
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Old 10-25-13, 12:54 PM
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Re: Seattle uses eminent domain to seize a parking lot from a 103 year old woman

Originally Posted by kvrdave View Post
Even then, I'd say it is wrong. We want to take what you have and develop it more. Has to be a better way to do it. Offer a low interest, or no interest loan to her to build a parking garage, for example.

If this were being turned into a park, I'd be okay with it. But if they want to take a car wash because they want a car wash, that would be wrong. Same with this.
Chances are she'd say no to any sort of plan that would cost her money. She's looking for over $20 million for a parking lot.

I can understand a city needing to acquire property for civic imperatives. Sounds like the city offered the person a fair price but she turned it down. This is certainly within her right to do so. But then, if it's THAT important to urban development, the city will get the property eventually.
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Old 10-25-13, 12:55 PM
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Re: Seattle uses eminent domain to seize a parking lot from a 103 year old woman

Originally Posted by RoyalTea View Post
If the supply of parking will go down and the demand for parking will go up, why does the government need to solve this problem? I've been to lots of cities in the United States where private companies own and operate parking lots. What makes Seattle unique?
Sounds like this lot is a rental lot or something where people rent spaces. They alluded to offering lower cost parking for tourists.
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Old 10-25-13, 01:03 PM
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Re: Seattle uses eminent domain to seize a parking lot from a 103 year old woman

Originally Posted by CRM114 View Post
Sounds like this lot is a rental lot or something where people rent spaces. They alluded to offering lower cost parking for tourists.
so this is the ONLY property in Seattle than can be turned into a parking lot?
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Old 10-25-13, 01:06 PM
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Re: Seattle uses eminent domain to seize a parking lot from a 103 year old woman

Originally Posted by RoyalTea View Post
If the supply of parking will go down and the demand for parking will go up, why does the government need to solve this problem? I've been to lots of cities in the United States where private companies own and operate parking lots. What makes Seattle unique?
Because the Seattle Waterfront brings in millions and millions of dollars in revenues for the city and its residents. If it suddenly became much more difficult and expensive to park to visit the Waterfront, that will have a substantial negative impact on the city. This seems like a pretty straightforward and appropriate use of ED to me, at least if the city is going to build a large, affordable parking garage at that location.
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Old 10-25-13, 01:09 PM
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Re: Seattle uses eminent domain to seize a parking lot from a 103 year old woman

Originally Posted by RoyalTea View Post
so this is the ONLY property in Seattle than can be turned into a parking lot?
Stop being deliberately obtuse. There is a very finite amount of places one can build a parking garage in close proximity to the Waterfront, most especially if the Viaduct has to be torn down and a new tunnel built in its place. You wouldn't build a parking garage for Times Square tourists on Staten Island and you wouldn't build a parking garage for people to visit the Waterfront in Madrona.
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Old 10-25-13, 01:11 PM
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Re: Seattle uses eminent domain to seize a parking lot from a 103 year old woman

I'm just saying that if the supply of parking goes down and the demand for parking goes up, it might make sense that other private individuals might want to build more parking and make money.

But apparently, this is a problem that only the government can solve.
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Old 10-25-13, 01:13 PM
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Re: Seattle uses eminent domain to seize a parking lot from a 103 year old woman

Originally Posted by jfoobar View Post
Because the Seattle Waterfront brings in millions and millions of dollars in revenues for the city and its residents. If it suddenly became much more difficult and expensive to park to visit the Waterfront, that will have a substantial negative impact on the city. This seems like a pretty straightforward and appropriate use of ED to me, at least if the city is going to build a large, affordable parking garage at that location.
The waterfront, AND as a place to park for people who are taking ferries from there.
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Old 10-25-13, 01:13 PM
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Re: Seattle uses eminent domain to seize a parking lot from a 103 year old woman

Originally Posted by RoyalTea View Post
so this is the ONLY property in Seattle than can be turned into a parking lot?
I have no idea but apparently it has some local value over other properties. And perhaps the city already acquired other properties before coming across the cranky woman from Spokane.

A local city just put up a hockey arena and acquired all of the houses and business on a square block. Their offers were fair and everyone (almost) cooperated. It's cool to stick it to the man but there's also a time to be realistic.


Originally Posted by RoyalTea View Post
I'm just saying that if the supply of parking goes down and the demand for parking goes up, it might make sense that other private individuals might want to build more parking and make money.

But apparently, this is a problem that only the government can solve.
It's a problem only the government can solve if it wants to maintain fair, reasonable prices for parking to attract tourists. If the parking lot is too far, people aren't going. If the parking lot is too expensive, people aren't going.
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Old 10-25-13, 01:18 PM
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Re: Seattle uses eminent domain to seize a parking lot from a 103 year old woman

Yeah, downtown Seattle is so large and they do not have free transportation to move you around it. Locals certainly do not know that and it is not like hotels give you a map to show you all that. But yeah, take the old ladies property and probably end up in court for years from her and her heirs ... nice plan. Go government!
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Old 10-25-13, 01:30 PM
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Re: Seattle uses eminent domain to seize a parking lot from a 103 year old woman

Originally Posted by BearFan View Post
Yeah, downtown Seattle is so large and they do not have free transportation to move you around it. Locals certainly do not know that and it is not like hotels give you a map to show you all that. But yeah, take the old ladies property and probably end up in court for years from her and her heirs ... nice plan. Go government!
C'mon, we can't have rich white people riding a *gasp* public bus!
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Old 10-25-13, 01:37 PM
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Re: Seattle uses eminent domain to seize a parking lot from a 103 year old woman

Yeah, that'll boost tourism. Come to Seattle's waterfront! Park downtown and catch the bus!
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Old 10-25-13, 01:42 PM
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Re: Seattle uses eminent domain to seize a parking lot from a 103 year old woman

Originally Posted by dork View Post
I don't think that's how that song goes.
Counting Crows had to change some words because FUCK RHYMING!
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Old 10-25-13, 01:55 PM
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Re: Seattle uses eminent domain to seize a parking lot from a 103 year old woman

Originally Posted by CRM114 View Post
Yeah, that'll boost tourism. Come to Seattle's waterfront! Park downtown and catch the bus!
.. or walk 5 blocks ... that is pretty much what most people do there. From any point of the main touristy area to any other point of the touristy area is just not that far. Besides, it gives you a change to pass by 27 Starbucks
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Old 10-25-13, 01:58 PM
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Re: Seattle uses eminent domain to seize a parking lot from a 103 year old woman

Originally Posted by CRM114 View Post
Yeah, that'll boost tourism. Come to Seattle's waterfront! Park downtown and catch the bus!
Tourists in NYC have no trouble getting around without a car and/or riding public transportation. Same with tourists in Boston, DC, Chicago, San Francisco, etc. etc. etc.
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Old 10-25-13, 02:00 PM
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Re: Seattle uses eminent domain to seize a parking lot from a 103 year old woman

Well, if they would have taken some lots from little old ladies in New York, think of how many people would be going there?
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Old 10-25-13, 02:07 PM
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Re: Seattle uses eminent domain to seize a parking lot from a 103 year old woman

Originally Posted by RoyalTea View Post
Tourists in NYC have no trouble getting around without a car and/or riding public transportation. Same with tourists in Boston, DC, Chicago, San Francisco, etc. etc. etc.
First of all, NYC ≠ Seattle. But I'm guessing that the waterfront in Seattle is attracting people who live locally and are taking a day trip or going out to a particular event.

Originally Posted by BearFan View Post
Well, if they would have taken some lots from little old ladies in New York, think of how many people would be going there?
I don't even take a car into NYC at all. But I'm pretty sure NYC uses ED often.
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