Carolyn Adolph | KUOW News and Information

Carolyn Adolph

Reporter

Year started with KUOW: 2008

Carolyn covers Seattle’s growth and the challenges people have in meeting the regional economy’s shifting demands. She came to KUOW after careers at the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, the Montreal Gazette and the Toronto Star. She is a graduate of Carleton University in Ottawa, Canada. She studied Economics at the University of California, Davis, and the Cultural Impact of Technological Change at the University of Washington.

Latest Award:  Runner Up, SPJ Investigative Audio Reporting with John Ryan, 2016. 

Email cadolph@kuow.org

Ways to Connect

Cameras on the Highway 520 bridge take pictures of license plates as vehicles pass to assess tolls.
Flickr Photo/Wonderlane (CC-BY 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/9ftjw3

Drivers will have a free ride on the state Route 99 tunnel in Seattle when it first opens this fall. After a few months, however, expect to pay a toll of $1.00-$2.50 for each trip.

The Washington State Transportation Commission has proposed multiple tolling options and will present them in public meetings this spring. 


An Emergency Evacuation Route sign is shown on Tuesday, March 27, 2018, inside the SR 99 tunnel in Seattle.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

Soon, state Route 99 — and the rest of us —will have a new asset: a completed Alaskan Way tunnel.

The $3.2 billion tunnel provides an earthquake-safe route under our downtown. However, the state highway department says it’s taken the highway off its list of Seismic Lifeline routes


Bill Steele demonstrates of the Pacific Northwest Seismic Network uses a shake table to show how earthquake forces gain power as they move away from the ground. But under the ground, it's a different story.
KUOW Photo/Carolyn Adolph

The Seattle region has been growing so fast, there are now 400,000 more people here than in 2009, when we agreed to replace the Alaskan Way Viaduct with a tunnel. 

A section of state Route 99 near Evergreen Washelli Funeral Home that does not have sidewalks, but does have pedestrians.
GoogleMaps

This summer the state highway department plans to show Aurora Avenue North some love – in the form of fresh paving.


The northbound lanes of the SR 99 tunnel are shown on Tuesday, March 27, 2018, in Seattle.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

Seattle's SR 99 tunnel will have cellular phone service, sprinklers in case of fire and a pedestrian escape route. 

Gregory Pleasant, 17, center, and Elijah Lewis, 18, right, raise their fists in the air before the start of March For Our Lives Seattle on Saturday, March 24, 2018, in Seattle.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

It was a great awakening – thousands of people, many of them teens and preteens, marched through Seattle on Saturday morning. They joined tens of thousands more across the country calling for laws that would curb gun violence.

Reilly Donham, 18, of Mill Creek, Washington, attends the 'March for Our Lives' rally in Seattle on Saturday morning.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

We are at the 'March for Our Lives' in Seattle this morning where 50,000 students and their families are expected to rally. We will update this post as the march progresses.

KUOW reporters Joshua McNichols and Carolyn Adolph host 'That's Debatable: Amazon is Good for Seattle' on Wednesday, March 7, 2018, in Seattle.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

We recently hosted a debate to answer a simple question: Is Amazon good for Seattle?

And the answer is: We don’t really know for certain. But the debate did have a clear winner.


KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

Amazon's search for a second headquarters has entered a new phase of courtship: The company has begun making visits to the 20 places on its short list.

And the first candidates to confirm they've met with an Amazon team are all in the Washington, D.C., area.

Chaco Canyon Organic Cafe is a University District coffee shop and a source of vegan dishes.
Facebook Photo/Chaco Canyon

Signs of public drug-taking are all over Seattle’s University District.

But an overflowing container of used needles proved too much for one restaurant customer.

KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

Congestion on regional roads is not expected to get better anytime soon, so more and more communities are considering a Puget Sound commuter ferry.

Agencies in Pierce, Thurston and Island counties are all looking into the possibility. But these agencies have a common problem: where to land on Seattle's crowded waterfront.

KUOW Photo/Carolyn Adolph

Last summer Kitsap Transit launched a fast ferry service with a single vessel. The Rich Passage I was the only low-wake boat it had to satisfy shore-erosion concerns along the passage from Bremerton to Seattle.

Since then, the Rich Passage I has missed 128 sailings, mostly because of mechanical failures. And though the vessel has been reliable since last October, Kitsap Transit’s problems aren’t over yet: In just over a month the vessel is due in drydock for the complete replacement of its engines.

An Uber driver near the San Francisco International Airport.
AP Photo/Jeff Chiu

Traffic congestion in Seattle is getting worse.

As traffic slows, more people are hailing rides from Uber and Lyft — and that’s adding to the trouble. Now, transit agencies that once fought to regulate car sharing services are thinking it may be time to make a new deal with them.

Amazon employee Filomeno Saya packages items at an Amazon fulfillment center on Friday, November 3, 2017, in Kent.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

Amazon is now contacting its shortlist of places for its next headquarters. The company told applicants who didn’t make the cut that they’ll be considered for future investments by the company.

But a new study from the Economic Policy Institute says places that have already received Amazon investments in warehouses don’t get the growth they bargained for.

Customers shop at Amazon Go on Monday, January 22, 2018, on 7th Ave., in Seattle.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

Amazon is the place where you buy stuff and then it magically appears at your front door. Or, more recently, it's the place where you go to buy a sandwich in a store and walk out without having to interact with a cashier.

There's an invisible side of all this: the cloud.


Flickr Photo/Tom Davidson (CC BY NC 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/dQVW4x

Our region’s population hit 4 million people just over a year ago. Now, there’s a prediction that it will reach nearly 6 million by 2050. It’s the latest growth projection from The Puget Sound Regional Council.

A dartboard we fixed up at Earl's On The Ave in Seattle's University District
KUOW Photo/Joshua McNichols

Amazon has released its list of 20 finalists for the company's next headquarters.

Many of the chosen don't come as big surprises: Chicago, Boston, New York, etc. But then there were cities like Miami and Indianapolis that made us ask, what are you doing on this map?

Amazon employees walk in front of a map highlighting 238 cities that submitted bids for Amazon's second headquarters in the lobby of the Day 1 building on Tuesday, October 24, 2017, in Seattle.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

Amazon announced the 20 cities it's now considering to be the company's next headquarters. Carolyn Adolf, co-host of KUOW's podcast, Prime(d) talks us through the choices. 


From left, Amazon software development interns Min Vu, Cindy Wang, Jason Mar, Katie Shin and Louis Yang, walk after getting bananas from the Amazon Community Banana Stand outside of the Amazon Meeting Center on Thursday, October 5, 2017, in Seattle.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

We’ve all noticed that Seattle feels like a younger city these days. Census data indicates that change is happening fast.

The number of adults under age 35 has been growing and much faster than in other tech capitals.

Robotic drive units transfer items at an Amazon fulfillment center on Friday, November 3, 2017, in Kent.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

This is a crazy time of year for online retail behemoth Amazon – especially for their robots.

Robots have already taken over a lot of the work in Kent's Amazon warehouse, like finding and retrieving items. And they’re continually learning how to do things that humans do.

At least there's a beautiful sunset to look at when you're stuck in Seattle traffic.
Flickr Photo/HeatherHeatherHeather (CC-BY-NC-ND)

Highway congestion in the Seattle area overall was up 22 percent in 2016.

That's according to the latest WSDOT report on the state of our  roads network. That network is challenged — as are we all — with the consequences of Seattle’s jobs and population explosion. 

KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

A survey by researchers at Oxford and Yale universities indicates that by 2060, robots will be able to perform jobs better than people can. That means millions of people could eventually be out of work.

Automation has been part of our world for a long time. And in general, automation has led to new jobs – especially service jobs. Artificial intelligence is changing that. Because machines are learning how to think, they can eliminate jobs without creating new ones.

Joseph Jones, an Amazon employee on the marketing team for Amazon channels, takes pictures with his mother, Cathy Jones, right, and his grandmother, Hattie Perry, left, during Amazon's bring your parents to work day on Friday, September 15, 2017.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

We know, you want the jobs. 

That's why you're offering billions of dollars and other sweet kickbacks to get Amazon to move to your town. 


KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

Amazon has 3,500 jobs available in Seattle right now. That’s down from what we’ve seen over the last few years. But it’s still a lot of growth.

Even though Amazon competes with other software companies for talent, it remains very picky.

Is Amazon your guilty pleasure?

Nov 24, 2017
Boxed items are shown on conveyer belts leading to docks where they will be loaded onto trucks at an Amazon fulfillment center on Friday, November 3, 2017, in Kent.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

We're a conflicted bunch.

On one hand, we love to hate Amazon in Seattle because the city grew too fast and it's made problems for a lot of people. But a lot of us are also huge Amazon shoppers. 

Think about that: Amazon is so good at what it does that even people who say they shouldn't, use it.


Traffic is seen on I-5 from 45th St., on Friday, October 27, 2017, in Seattle.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

A couple of years ago, a semitruck carrying a load of fish overturned on the Alaskan Way Viaduct during rush hour on a Tuesday.

We get it: This is possibly the most stereotypical Seattle problem ever.


Amazon employees walk in front of a map highlighting 238 cities that submitted bids for Amazon's second headquarters in the lobby of the Day 1 building on Tuesday, October 24, 2017, in Seattle.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

So.

It’s been a little tense in Seattle since Amazon started shopping around for a new city to love.


A group of people jog across Lenora Street, on Thursday, October 5, 2017, in front of Amazon's biodomes, in Seattle.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

Do us a favor. Look up relentless.com. 

No really — try it.

We’ll wait.


Prime(d)

Oct 17, 2017

What happens when Amazon comes to your town? So many cities want Amazon’s second headquarters. We get it. We here in Seattle have the first one.

And it’s changed us – physically, emotionally. Psyche and soul. Some people got rich. Some people got forced out.

We’re in a long-term relationship with Amazon. You just started dating.

We need to talk. 

Listen on the web or subscribe in Apple Podcasts.

Amazon Spheres, downtown Seattle
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

In September, 2017, Amazon kicked off the country’s biggest lottery — a search for a second headquarters, a.k.a. HQ2. The city that wins that contest might want some insight from the city Amazon chose first. So we're launching a new podcast.   

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