West Seattle scene: Remember, “I-35″ is just a nickname

April 14, 2010 at 10:53 am | In Safety, Sunrise Heights, Transportation, West Seattle news | 24 Comments

Some call the 35th SW straightaway “I-35″ because there are times it feels like a freeway. MAS noticed that somebody has put up a sign in hopes of reminding drivers it’s not. (This is by the northbound bus stop, 35th/Webster, Sunrise Heights.)

24 Comments

  1. I lived on 35th for five years and I was so glad to move. Yes I knew I was buying a house on an arterial. I loved my house, my neighbors, proximity to downtown and Junction. I hated the speeders. The problem-hardly anyone goes 35 on 35th. I witnessed at least four accidents near the front of my house from people trying to take eastbound left turns and getting rearended in the process. Even now I grit my teeth when I take 35th and try to make a turn. I used to see the motorcycle cops get people around 35th and Brandon/Dawson. Seriously the cop would not be parked more than 2 minutes before he would catch another offender. I wish they would have more crosswalks on this street since trying to cross it is like playing frogger. This street is definitely more residential (with libraries and clinic) than the stretch of Admiral that has everyone up in arms about the 30 MPH limit.

    Comment by Mags — 11:03 am April 14, 2010 #

  2. I’ve also like the simple “What’s the Hurry?”. Just getting drivers to think about why they are driving faster than the posted speed is a start.

    Comment by Robert2715 — 11:05 am April 14, 2010 #

  3. 35th Ave is crazy. I often feel pressured to speed by other drivers tailgating me. and because of the steep hill by the water tower its hard not to go over 40. but i totally understand why this road has become “I-35.” the WS peninsula lacks a north-south arterial that has a speed limit of greater than 35 and connects to White Center. some people just need to get somewhere and this is the only road with access to the bridge, Westwood Village, and White Center.

    Comment by ljd — 11:47 am April 14, 2010 #

  4. Don’t worry, ljd, you won’t have any traffic issues in Bellevue. No pressure from other drivers at all. It is *so* much better than West Seattle in every way, including the fact that the people who need to get somewhere are going *important* places, like Neiman Marcus, not just our crime-ridden destinations like the bridge, Westwood Village, and White Center.

    Comment by SarahScoot — 11:54 am April 14, 2010 #

  5. Fauntleroy and California Ave. are just as bad as 35th for speeding drivers, on their cell phones etc. Very frustrating. I’ve E-mailed the city and received 2 responses about the driving issues, but have yet to see any activity. ( Radar and the like.)

    Comment by Michael Anderson — 12:01 pm April 14, 2010 #

  6. Please people!!! Have you people ever driven on arterial roads in other major towns?? Most of those are 45-55 MPH. And yes that is with houses on the same road. I do not speed because I know there are revenue agents (SPD and/or photo enforcement) out there.

    But honestly speed is not the problem. Texting, talking on the phone and people in general not paying attention while in their vehicle is the problem.

    Comment by KG — 12:14 pm April 14, 2010 #

  7. I was driving north on 35th last night and was passed by a Subaru that had to be going 80. After it passed me, it changed lanes and you could see the car tilt as it swerved.

    Comment by CtheC — 12:21 pm April 14, 2010 #

  8. Slow down folks!

    Comment by WatertowerJIm — 12:34 pm April 14, 2010 #

  9. That pic shows my bus stop, and I’ve almost been ran down more than once. I try to avoid 35th at times, and opt for the longer, rougher, California route.

    Comment by T_Bickle — 12:46 pm April 14, 2010 #

  10. I drive 35th everyday, four times a day driving back and forth from daycare to work….I rarely see anyone doing over 45 mph let alone 80. It seems to me that everyone averages around 40. I have lived here for a year and think some of you people need to settle down and enjoy where you live and not complain about everything. I grew up in Jersey, lived all over the states including Oakland and Boston. There are places much worse and the family and I are super happy about our neighborhood. Sorry about the rant but just wanted to give an outsiders view on spending your time enjoying where you live instead of bashing everyone and everything.

    Comment by displacedcoastie — 12:48 pm April 14, 2010 #

  11. Where did the signage in the photo come from? i want to get a few for the curve at the top of Admiral hill…Anyone?

    Comment by picot — 1:27 pm April 14, 2010 #

  12. SarahScoot, what does this have to do with Bellevue? 35th Avenue has a problem, it is widely known about, and our elected officials need to address it. The longer it takes to act the more fatalities that will result on this unsafe street. Taking a “there’s nothing we can do attitude” is how cities wind up with ghettos. West Seattle’s network of arterial roads need improvement and better planning. Using cynicism, even in a forum as insignificant as this one, tends to motivate people to NOT get involved in their community. An efficient, well designed network of surface streets are essential to any neighborhood.

    Comment by ljd — 1:42 pm April 14, 2010 #

  13. I’d say most people average 35-40 mph on 35th. The speed is fine but the lanes are so narrow with parked cars that I get stressed out driving next to Metro and big trucks…and any Prius since they seem to swerve into my lane all the time.

    Comment by CMP — 2:32 pm April 14, 2010 #

  14. The same thing happens on Delridge. And since the stop lights are so far apart, it’s impossible to cross the street.

    Comment by here today — 3:06 pm April 14, 2010 #

  15. I admit! I found myself doing almost about 43 the other day! I looked down and said to myself “wow! Slow down Jame”and of course I did I dont think it should be so high in the speed. It should be 30 like it is through california ave.

    Comment by Jamie — 3:13 pm April 14, 2010 #

  16. Let’s not forget the Erskine Way SW Speedway. It is always a fun challenge to cross the speedway when cars come zipping through the blind s-curves at 40mph where the posted speed limit is 20mph.

    Comment by iml — 3:52 pm April 14, 2010 #

  17. lol CMP are you saying Prius drivers are generally bad?

    Comment by nuni — 5:04 pm April 14, 2010 #

  18. 35th is a nightmare mainly because there’s no center turn lane. So everyone speeds along in the left lane and comes to a screeching hault – or quickly changes lanes – often right in front of someone – when someone in front of them stops to turn left (which takes forever since there’s usually a lot of traffic coming the other way). I’ve always thought it would be a major ‘net good’ to move all the parking to one side of 35th, add a center turn lane, and time the lights so it’s not so hard to cross the street on foot (at enhanced crosswalks). If you really look, there’d be plenty of parking capacity on one side of 35th plus all the side streets. But of course, the people who live on the side of the street that loses the parking would hate it.

    Comment by Meghan — 5:51 pm April 14, 2010 #

  19. Maybe this is why the traffic lights are timed so poorly on 35th SW.

    Other gripes: those who don’t realize they need to give it a little more gas going up a hill, those who have trouble staying in their lane (at any speed but usually it’s the slowpokes who tend to wallow & drift), & buses that don’t pull into their stops or, worse, pull out into the far lane nearly forcing you into oncoming traffic.

    I don’t envy those who live along 35th & are forced to park on the street, judging by the occasional vehicles there which have left rear damage.

    Comment by JR — 6:00 pm April 14, 2010 #

  20. A subject near and dear to my heart! I saw that sign and was greatly amused. I had a prolonged fantasy about us denizens of 35th organizing a campaign of less confrontational signs (no @#$%%) saying things like, “Hey my family lives here, please drive the speed limit,” or, “35th Ave SW is (?)% residential, Please slow down,” or, “I promise not to speed on your street, How about not speeding on mine?” etc. I think a time limited, perhaps recurrent/cyclical “event” like this would be an eye opener for folks. Particularly commuters who I think can become “zoned out” on a commute and forget that they’re zipping by houses.

    Unfortunately, I am about to move off of 35th (to 38th) so I cannot spearhead such an effort. I’d love to see it though! I remember the first time I posted on WSB a complaint/concern about speed on 35th some nice Social Darwinist said that people who buy on 35th get a price break on their property and so should expect it. In other words, “Just suck it up.” I say !@#$%^&* that!

    Comment by 35this35mph — 6:56 pm April 14, 2010 #

  21. As someone who lives near the Your Speed sign near Brandon I can tell you depending on the time of day drivers are going way over what some posters have said is average. I have watched that sign at all times of the day and would say the average at Brandon is 45 and have seen many people going much faster than that. It is time to slow down people, there are many families with small children and pets living on this arterial, I have seen too many accidents and near misses to count.

    Comment by momon35th — 8:30 pm April 14, 2010 #

  22. I was walking home from the bus recently and saw a dog get hit by a car near John’s Corner Deli, so that may have something to do with the sign. The dog survived, but it was pretty awful to watch a dog get hit and then realize that the dog’s family, kids included, saw the whole thing. I hope the dog was okay in the end. Slow down out there kids.

    Comment by missval — 8:49 pm April 14, 2010 #

  23. You know the comment about replacing parking on one side with a center turn lane would be interesting. If you moved the parking from one side to another, you could force motorists to negotiate a curve or two and slow down. Of course, you’d want some curb extensions to protect the back end of a person’s car when the roadway shifted.

    Comment by Mike — 1:03 pm April 15, 2010 #

  24. Whoever printed and posted this sign. Please call me. I’m currently taking a fund of people in this area to print more. We’re thinking larger :)

    206-450-3239

    Signed,

    Love it.

    Comment by 35th Person — 4:42 pm April 15, 2010 #

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