Comment deadline Friday for Metro Route 120 changes including Delridge ‘rechannelization’

April 25, 2012 at 5:13 pm | In Delridge, Transportation, West Seattle news | 34 Comments

This Friday is Metro‘s deadline for comments on the big changes proposed along Route 120 in Delridge. Last night, they took comments in person – via butcher paper, among other methods – during an open house at Youngstown Cultural Arts Center; they also are offering an online survey. Even if you’re not a bus rider, you might want to take a look and offer an opinion, because the plan includes “rechannelization” for a stretch of north Delridge Way SW, with bike/bus lanes plus less parking. Here’s how Metro summarizes potential effects of the changes overall:

Bus riders— If you ride Route 120, you’ll have a faster trip and your bus will probably spend less time waiting at busy traffic signals. If your bus stop is planned for closure, you may have to travel farther to get to or from it. Many of the remaining stops will get new amenities such as bus shelters, landing pads, and/or benches.

Drivers— If you drive, you may experience more delays in your evening commute southbound on Delridge Way SW due to the added southbound bike lane and the elimination of on-street parking.

Bike riders— If you bike, you will benefit from the addition of southbound bike lane along Delridge Way SW between SW Oregon Street and SW Andover Street and a northbound shared bus, bike, and off-peak parking lane. You may need to be more alert as you negotiate the shared bus lane with buses, right-turning vehicles, and parked cars.

Neighbors— If you live or own a business along Delridge Way SW between SW Andover Street and SW Oregon Street, you or your customers will have fewer parking options due to the added bike and bus lanes. Parking will be allowed in the bus lane during non-commute hours. See a diagram showing how parking on Delridge will change.

The Delridge/Andover intersection in particular drew some attention while we were at the open house; Metro reps were being asked if they had observed the area’s jam-packed traffic before suggesting that – including the truck traffic bound to and from the Nucor steel plant. There was also discussion centered on the proposed removal of some stops – here’s the list of stops to be closed in West Seattle/White Center:

Delridge Way SW

Northbound (at SW Oregon St)
Southbound (at SW Oregon St)
Northbound (at SW Edmunds St)
Southbound (at SW Edmunds St)
Northbound (at Puget Blvd SW)
Southbound (at Puget Blvd SW)
Southbound (at SW Orchard St)
Southbound (at SW Holden St)

16th Avenue SW
Southbound (at SW 110th St)

Closing fall 2012

SW Henderson
Westbound (at Delridge Way SW)
26th Ave SW
Northbound (at SW Cambridge St)
Southbound (at SW Cambridge St)
SW Roxbury St
Westbound (at 22nd Ave SW)
Eastbound (at 20th Ave SW)

Some stops are to be moved/added, as well; take a closer look via this map).

As for the rechannelization – the changes are to be made primarily between Andover and Oregon on Delridge, as shown here.

Metro’s website for the proposals says the changes will start as soon as next month (for some of the stop-spacing plans); again, they’ve set Friday as the deadline for comments – use the survey link above, or e-mail haveasay@kingcounty.gov.

P.S. For a neighborhood perspective, North Delridge Neighborhood Council co-chair Amanda Leonard was among the open-house attendees and has published a summary on the NDNC website – see it here.

34 Comments

  1. Bike lanes on Delridge? I travel Delridge to and from work every day and I rarely see an adult on a bicycle.

    Maybe the hope is that bike lanes will encourage more bike riders but that hasn’t been the case in other areas where this was implemented (Nickerson is a prime example).

    Repaving Delridge would be a great improvement, as well as adding a few red light cameras and occasional police emphasis patrols.

    Comment by Harry Reems — 6:09 pm April 25, 2012 #

  2. I was unable to attend the meeting, but was there any talk about improving/adding crosswalks? Living on the southbound side of Delridge it is often difficult to cross over to my house and back to the car if I park northbound. With possible increased traffic delays it sounds like crossing will become even more challenging.
    Although, I may end up parking so far away that I am by a traffic light…

    Comment by Delridge Resident — 6:24 pm April 25, 2012 #

  3. I don’t ride my bike on Delridge because the pavement is in terrible shape.

    Comment by datamuse — 7:29 pm April 25, 2012 #

  4. In true WSB comment trends, it only took one person to question the addition of bike lanes!

    Comment by Dizzle — 7:42 pm April 25, 2012 #

  5. Still waiting to see all the bicyclists on Admiral Way, and Alaska Way into Columbia City. I think I’ve seen a grand total of 2 in the last 6 months.

    Uh, has everyone has gotten so lost in their utopian world that they’ve forgotten that Seattle is hilly, wet, and dark, and poorly lit, and terrible roads to drive and bike on?

    Hello? You can’t change topograhy and the weather.

    Comment by G — 7:55 pm April 25, 2012 #

  6. Please, oh please can we stop harping on bicycles. The poor infrastructure and blatant aggression displayed on the road by motorists is to blame, not some bull-poop explanations of topography or climate, as has been disproved over and over again if you people researched things before you make your generalizations. (http://www.copenhagenize.com/2009/07/worlds-most-bicycle-friendly-cities.html)
    There are a few Swiss cities on there with bicycle modal shares of over 20%, and they are hillier, colder, and rainier then Seattle, not to mention the multiple Northern European cities that get worse weather then Seattle.

    Comment by JN — 8:29 pm April 25, 2012 #

  7. I ride my bike almost everyday down delridge to work and see several others riding as well.

    Comment by Patrick — 8:55 pm April 25, 2012 #

  8. Making it even harder to get in or out of West Seattle. Good plan.

    Comment by WSTroll — 9:26 pm April 25, 2012 #

  9. Hi Harry,
    I am an adult, and ride my bike on Delridge almost daily. I also tend to see many other adults on bicycles as well. The bike lanes will be a welcome addition!

    Comment by jake — 10:07 pm April 25, 2012 #

  10. Delridge Resident: we’ve been pushing for crosswalks for years, but we’re not getting them right now. SDOT is concerned that having crosswalks without a steady flow of pedestrians will condition drivers to ignore crosswalks entirely.
    I agree that there’s got to be a better solution for pedestrians crossing Delridge. I’d love to see SPD ticket drivers who fail to yield to pedestrians who wish to cross (yes, every intersection on Delrdige is, by law, an unmarked crosswalk!) I sometimes brave it and just walk out into traffic so cars have to stop. Stupid? Perhaps, but it gets so frustrating to wait on all those law-breaking drivers.

    And yes, when I ride my bicycle I always yield to pedestrians, sometimes even stopping out in the traffic lane with all my lights and reflectors, so drivers have to yield as well :)

    Comment by jake — 10:14 pm April 25, 2012 #

  11. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Copenhagen_cycle_path.jpg

    smart planning includes not throwing bicycles in the same path as motorized vehicles

    Comment by Mike — 11:33 pm April 25, 2012 #

  12. Seems to me like they are making it easier (and safer!) to get out of West Seattle.

    Comment by JN — 11:38 pm April 25, 2012 #

  13. It’s not too hard to bike on West Seattle hills. Get a bike with a low gear. The first few times you might have to get off and walk partway if you’re out of shape, but pretty soon you’ll be biking all the way to the top. Then you won’t need a gym membership, you’ll get plenty of aerobic workout biking the hills. Biking in the rain has challenges, it’s hard on the bike, your glasses steam up, you need extra braking distance going downhill. But Seattle ranks 44th among major US cities for rainfall, 38 inches per year so odds are good out of 365 days you can get in a lot of rain-free biking. If it is a really bad day you can leave the bike home and take transit or drive.

    Comment by Kathy — 12:34 am April 26, 2012 #

  14. My only concern would be if the improvements slowed traffic on Delridge. There are already an excessive amount of people who inexplicably drive well under the posted speed of 35 MPH. Maybe they’ll add more signs telling people it is 35MPH and NOT 25 MPH.

    Comment by Danny — 7:18 am April 26, 2012 #

  15. I hope it does slow traffic on Delridge and encourages more bus riders and bikers. People drive way too fast to safely cross at unsignaled intersections. Hopefully the new configurations will prevent drivers from using the center turn lane as a passing lane and slow these idiots to the posted 35.

    Comment by Brian — 7:43 am April 26, 2012 #

  16. As a daily bike commuter, I am very happy to see some planning for the bike lane! There are many cyclists on Delridge, and this will hopefully make that few block stretch a little less hairy.

    Comment by evie — 8:14 am April 26, 2012 #

  17. If I can’t park I can’t shop.

    Comment by M — 8:36 am April 26, 2012 #

  18. I have concerns about the elimination of the Oregon bus stop, but I am more concerned about the loss of parking between Oregon and Genesee. (I realize that the parking from Oregon to Andover is going away.. but…)

    Youngstown is such a great community resource and I hope that this loss of parking doesn’t impact them. there have been so many large meetings/ events there… mayor town hall, neighborhood planning meetings (http://westseattleblog.com/2009/07/this-is-huge-west-seattle-neighborhoods-talk-present-future), delridge days, plays, etc that attract people from all over west seattle. local dance studios have recitals there. their artist open houses have been fun as well.

    every time Youngstown hosts a large event like that, the street parking all along Delridge is full. I’ve seen City staffers lugging their easels and presentation boards from their parking spot on Delridge north of Genesee. for some events, the youngstown parking lot itself is closed off.

    I did send in my comments, but wonder what any-one from Yougnstown thinks, or if they care about the loss of all that parking. I guess I don’t know what their opinion is, but i really appreciate the place that Youngstown has become.

    the re-channelization plan seems to ignore the fact that people heading north on Delridge might want to turn right on Andover, is that not going to be allowed anymore?

    I wish this wouldn’t become a cyclist bashing debate. I will say that I do see many more cyclists traveling along 21st though puget ridge and pigeon point than I see on Delridge, but agree that Delridge needs to be bike friendly.

    Comment by sam-c — 8:58 am April 26, 2012 #

  19. I ride my bike on Delridge all the time in the nicer months. The area getting bike lanes have never been a problem for me, it is south of Orchard/Home Depot where I have to switch to the sidewalk because the road narrows and the road is so terrible. But I will enjoy 3 blocks of bike lane before I get to the scary section!

    Comment by JEM — 9:24 am April 26, 2012 #

  20. “Rechannelization” announcement comment threads are always fascinating to me. The comments that make my head spin are the ones that equate car travel with simply being, a la, “If I can’t park, I can’t shop.” Maybe this is someone who is severely disabled, someone who must park directly in front of their destination and use a lift to get out of the vehicle, but somehow…I doubt it.

    Being a “pedestrian” isn’t some freakish inconvenience, it’s the actual condition of being human, without a 2-ton steel and plastic exoskeleton. Give it a try.

    Comment by JW — 9:37 am April 26, 2012 #

  21. oh, parking is allowed during non-commute hours. nevermind, ignore my comment. i guess most of the big events at youngstown are during non-commute hours. that is not spelled out on the re-channelization pdf map.

    but i still wonder if right turns onto andover will be allowed from northbound delridge.

    Comment by sam-c — 9:50 am April 26, 2012 #

  22. It is ridiculous that I have to say this on every transportation thread. NO MORE BIKES-VS-CARS BITCHING. Thank you. I have had to delete three comments already that did nothing more than insult one group on behalf of the other. (Not that they are even “groups” – most bicyclists have cars too. Many drivers have bikes.) We don’t do things that way around here. There are about 6,000 other news websites out there that DO allow insults (regardless of their stated rules). Keep your comments to the subject of the story. Also please note the Metro address at which comments are being accepted, and I have just found additional information about SDOT’s process for the rechannelization – writing a followup in a bit. – TR

    Comment by WSB — 10:28 am April 26, 2012 #

  23. One note about the bike lanes southbound: if you look at the proposed street configuration, there’s not much room there for anything else! It looks to me like the choice is between a single 16 foot wide southbound lane, or a normal 11-foot lane plus 5-foot bike lane. The only way you could do anything else would be to remove the center turn lane.

    Comment by jake — 11:02 am April 26, 2012 #

  24. With a Greenway (bike lane) proposed on 26th Ave SW, I don’t understand why anyone would support bike lanes on Delridge. As it is now, I see twice as many bike riders on 26th Ave SW than Delridge. As a parent of 2 preteens, I don’t let them ride their bikes down Delridge when we ride together, instead we opting for 26th; adding bike lanes to Delridge will not change this. I think the city should invest in a solution that would serve bike riders of all age groups and abilities.

    Comment by Camp Fellow — 12:33 pm April 26, 2012 #

  25. Parking for residents and businesses on Delridge isn’t a peice of cake right now, the idea of removing all the parking is concerning to me. Lots of renters and home owners who live on Delridge park on the street, and allowing parking only during “non commute” times is not a viable solution.
    .
    Between the community center, the recently upgraded soccer fields, and the addition of the skate park, there’s is plenty of extra traffic parking on Delridge, especially during the evening hours. This affects were residents can park when they return home, and if they don’t leave before 6 or 7am in the morning, they cannot park in the restricted lanes.
    .
    Is the real impetus for this change the addition of a bike lane? I’m all for the support of bike riders and making city streets more friendly for both bikers and pedestrians, but I’m not sure it makes sense in this case, given the parking impact on residents and businesses in the area.

    Comment by DC — 12:44 pm April 26, 2012 #

  26. Just published this separately but the rechannelization is an SDOT project and does have a separate channel, if you will, for comments, which hasn’t been clear up to this point in the process, since it’s been bundled into the bus-route discussion. Followup: http://westseattleblog.com/?p=107080
    .
    TR

    Comment by WSB — 1:05 pm April 26, 2012 #

  27. the reason you don’t see bikes on delridge is because they are travelling on 26th- which is certainly what i would do! however, i hope that slowdowns on delridge don’t force more car traffic onto 26th- something that very often happens in north delridge when the main road is backed up. nothing like frustrated drivers trying to skirt a traffic jam by driving recklessly down a residential street.

    Comment by brittany — 1:20 pm April 26, 2012 #

  28. To the person who says they don’t see riders on Delridge, I avoid riding on Delridge due to the many times I have almost been hit (and the pavement is awful). I take a more scenic and hilly route up the Pigeon Point way to try and avoid the Delridge mess. I personally will welcome bike lanes. It would be nice to make a straight shot down Delridge than to have to meander a bunch of back ways just to safely try and get to my destination.

    Comment by Semele — 2:11 pm April 26, 2012 #

  29. I kind of like the back ways personally–much more scenic–but I agree it’s no way to get anywhere efficiently. *shakes fist at local geology*

    Comment by datamuse — 2:44 pm April 26, 2012 #

  30. Camp Fellow – that’s an interesting point, but since the beginning of our advocacy for the 26th ave greenway, we’ve been hearing the opposite sentiment from many cyclists. They’re worried that by focusing on 26th, it will allow SDOT to ignore needed bicycle improvements on Delridge. There are many reasons riders would choose Delridge over 26th: 26th offers little to no connection to some important roads (e.g. Oregon, Edmunds, etc.) and destinations (Youngstown, pearls, etc.) along Delridge.

    To take an example from the automobile world, you wouldn’t stop maintaining surface street infrastructure because there is a highway a quarter mile away. The same is true of 26th and Delridge for cyclists: the roads serve different needs, and both need to be a focus of safety improvements for drivers, cyclists, pedestrians, and transit users alike.

    Comment by jake — 2:49 pm April 26, 2012 #

  31. DC – see my 11:02am comment above regarding the bike lane. It’s pretty clear upon looking at the road diagrams that the bike lane is more of an after-thought than anything else: it’s the best use of space for a somewhat awkward 5 feet of road left-over by the rest of the plan.

    The impetus for the project is streamlining the 120, and this project, in my opinion, will offer a huge improvement to that end.

    Comment by jake — 2:52 pm April 26, 2012 #

  32. Am I the only person here shocked by the closure of the stop in front of Youngstown? I ride the bus every day and I see physically and mentally disabled people who require one to one supervision in order to walk using this stop on a regular basis.

    Also parents are concerned for their children’s safety. Besides being a very busy street, Delridge unfortunately has a certain amount trouble including drug trafficking.

    To remove stops heavily used by disabled and young people would be supremely stupid. Please chime in if you agree, just maybe we can get them to leave this bus stop as it is.

    Comment by Delridge Resident — 3:22 pm April 26, 2012 #

  33. When are we going to get real transit like rail instead of wasting money on bus transit

    Comment by Nick — 9:17 pm April 26, 2012 #

  34. I drive and sometimes bike. When I drive I don’t notice the number of bicyclists, but there are many bicyclists on Delridge, I guarantee.
    .
    I think SDOT should look at how that center turn lane is used. There are whole stretches when it is not used. Could we keep turn “pockets” only where needed (intersections) and keep parking everywhere else?

    Comment by resident — 7:15 am April 27, 2012 #

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