Seattle’s tunneling megamachine is more effed than we thought


Ah, Bertha. Here in Seattle, your tunneling project is one of our favorite things to talk about. But not always for the best of reasons because, well, it’s been one helluva fustercluck. You’re tunneling beneath downtown to create a subterranean re-route for State Highway 99, which stands on stilts and could fall down the next time the earth shakes. So clearly, you have an incredibly important job.

We were promised you’d be finished this August, but you’ve had quite a few breakdowns. And we get it, we do! Machines malfunction all the time and usually it’s no big deal. But the state has already sunk about $1 billion into making sure you can tunnel underneath the Alaskan Way Viaduct, so people are, understandably, a little upset.

Also, we don’t mean to kick you while you’re down, but you have only drilled 1,083 ft. of your 9,270 ft. route. And all these new repairs pushed your drilling restart…

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