Sunday, January 1, 2012

Coal: Specific Actions Bellingham Must Take

Previous Blogs have documented several possible actions that the City of Bellingham should take.
This one gets more specific.

In addition to re-stating the City's concerns regarding the EIS, the City Council and Mayor need to request information for the public record on the following concerns, prior to completion of the EIS Scope of Work:

Regarding RR Crossings within City of Bellingham Limits:

1. Entrance to/from Marine Park public access & surrounding businesses

2. Entrance to/from Alaska Ferry Terminal & adjacent businesses

3. Entrance to/from public access, Boulevard Park & business adjacent

4. South Bay Multi-use Trail crossing to/from North end of Boulevard Park.

5. Wharf Street crossing to/from nearby businesses along Cornwall St, including old GP Waterfront Redevelopment site

6. Access to/from Central Ave crossing, nearby businesses & old GP Waterfront Redevelopment site

7. F Street crossing to/from waterfront business, including berthing area, access to Waterfront Redevelopment Site, entrance to Bellwether Hotel complex

8. Access to/from waterfront from Squalicum Parkway truck route & surrounding businesses, Yacht Basin, Port of Bellingham


A. Need assessment of costs & responsibility for mitigating these sites for pedestrian, cycling and vehicle safety, affected all waterfront area business impacts, impacts to Waterfront Redevelopment efforts, public access to its waterfront, Port of Bellingham offices & operations, including tenants, Yacht Basin, wharf usage, water taxi, cruise, fishing, COB firefighting capability, Coast Guard operations and public access to the entire impacted waterfront area.

B. Determine source(s) of funding for all the impacts created by a significant increase to freight train traffic, including possible adverse impacts to AMTRAK & other passenger service.

C. Show cause as to why the proposed Coal Terminal at Cherry Point and related additional freight train traffic is more appropriate than other alternatives. Clearly state the amount & timing of all funding that will be made available from the proponents to mitigate any harms identified.

Specifically estimate the anticipated revenues that will accrue to each impacted local governments over time that justify approval of this proposal. What financial commitment is anticipated from citizens to pay for necessary mitigations?

There may be additional specific questions that also need to be officially asked on the public record.

I am hopeful that concerned citizens will suggest their ideas in writing to the City Council and Mayor.