Boston had its “Big Dig”. Cost were overrun by 190% and it took 15 years to complete. It included a 3.5 mile tunnel. Here in Seattle, we are digging a small 1.9 mile tunnel. We have purchased the world’s largest boring (bore means making a hole) machine. It has a name (Bertha) and its own Twitter account. Here is her official website. I am a huge fan of this engineering feat. I am not a fan of the tunnel itself. I think that it is a waste of money and resources. I would rather see the money spent on buses, rail, and bike infrastructure.
When this project is complete, I may never drive on the completed road as it will be tolled and I try my hardest not to pay tolls. I would rather have the gas tax increased to pay for roads.
We started digging this summer and we are 5 months into construction. Unfortunately, we are now 3 months behind schedule. Something has been blocking the world’s largest tunneling machine and the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) couldn’t figure out what it was. Turns out, it was a metal pipe that WSDOT left in the ground in 2002.
This might be a long project.