More city-budget $ proposed for ‘Fauntleroy Green Boulevard’ and Delridge Way planning

November 8, 2013 at 11:34 am | In Transportation, West Seattle news, West Seattle politics | 20 Comments


(ADDED 1:42 PM: Updated partial design for Fauntleroy ‘boulevard’ – click for full-size PDF)
The process of shaping next year’s city budget is into the final stretch now, and proposed changes are going before the City Council for discussion. This afternoon, potential transportation-budget changes will be considered, and two involve major roads in West Seattle:

First – City Councilmembers Tom Rasmussen, Sally Bagshaw, and Richard Conlin are proposing adding $1.8 million to the Fauntleroy Way Green Boulevard project, which, the budget document says, would complete its design next year.

It’s been two years since the first council discussion of design funding for the project; the detailed budget document goes into other background (including mentions of Fauntleroy’s “gateway” status that date back to the ’90s), and then:

Currently, Fauntleroy Way SW is a poorly defined street that has numerous curb cuts and paved planting strips. Pedestrian and bicycle safety are cited as major concerns by residents and business owners. It is perceived as a difficult street for pedestrians to safely cross.

The Fauntleroy project will improve the pedestrian environment and crossings, access, traffic safety, lighting, and drainage on Fauntleroy Way SW between 35th Ave. SW and SW Alaska St. as well as implementing the boulevard concept for this section of roadway, as originally discussed in the West Seattle Streetscape Concepts Plan.

The project was first funded in 2012. Additional funding was provided in 2013. The base budget includes sufficient funding for work through July 2014 when SDOT expects to complete 60% design. SDOT reports that it could complete final design by December 2014 if Council added $1.8M to the project’s budget. Construction costs are currently estimated at $11.4M and could begin in early 2015, sixteen years after the adoption of the Neighborhood Plan.

The aforementioned “additional funding” emerged last July, the council added $200,000 more to the design budget, as reported here.

Where would the $1.8 million come from, you ask? More than half is from sidewalk work that the budget document says SDOT can’t do until 2015 anyway); half a million would be moved from “planning work on pedestrian amenities in the vicinity of the Northgate Link Light Rail Station, scheduled to open in 2021 (or potentially sooner). This is work that will have to be done, but it need not be done in 2014.”

Second – This afternoon’s presentations/discussions will also include Councilmembers Jean Godden, Sally Clark, and Rasmussen’s proposal to add $100,000 to the SDOT budget for Delridge Way “multi-modal corridor development” planning. Here’s the detailed budget document, which explains in part:

The Delridge corridor has increasing importance as a priority transit corridor, and funding for the corridor study will support the community’s intense desire to address a number of pedestrian safety, bicycle access and transit priority upgrades. By initiating planning in this corridor in 2014, SDOT can begin the public engagement phase with the community, as well as data collection and an inventory of existing conditions and potential improvements recommended in the relevant modal plans.

The transportation-budget proposals are on the agenda for the council’s 2 pm budget-discussion session today; you can watch via the Seattle Channel, online or cable. If you have comments for the council – e-mail council@seattle.gov. We’ll update later with the outcome on these items.

1:44 PM UPDATE: We have just obtained the newest rendering for Fauntleroy, added atop the story, and explained by SDOT spokesperson Rick Sheridan: “This represents the current design, which has not yet reached 60 percent. To incorporate the recommendations of the draft Bicycle Master Plan, a cycle track is part of this latest design. SDOT will return to West Seattle in early 2014 to collect feedback from residents and businesses on the design.” Cycle tracks are bike lanes separated from motorized-vehicle traffic for safety. They’re the brown-shaded areas in the rendering.

20 Comments

  1. $1.8 million for a boulevard? Please! With the increase in car traffic coming due to lack of bus service, they should think about making Fauntleroy 4 lanes again to handle it. And then donate the 1.8 to the county for bus service.

    Comment by Mike — 12:30 pm November 8, 2013 #

  2. A nice big leaf maple should go right in front of the pharmacy. The roots will rip up their parking lot and the leaves will cover the building.

    Comment by Leafy bowers are Good for People — 12:36 pm November 8, 2013 #

  3. ======paste===========
    Where would the $1.8 million come from, you ask? More than half is from sidewalk work that the budget document says SDOT can’t do until 2015 anyway);
    ======end=============
    The difference is that sidewalks *are* needed, their money needs to be dedicated.

    Comment by dsa — 1:20 pm November 8, 2013 #

  4. Why can’t this extra money be used for the “ailing” Metro services. Do we really need this? It would seem this money could go to better use not cancelling needed services like Metro, taking care ofpotholes…bad roads, and such. In other words, fix that which is broken rather than beautifying. Be sure and e-mail comments as suggested above. We seem to often hear “we are short of money.” This just does not make sense.

    Comment by Metroconcern — 1:58 pm November 8, 2013 #

  5. LONG time coming; I attended public open house about this, 2 years ago, at Senior Center

    Comment by Diane — 2:01 pm November 8, 2013 #

  6. @mike – What would 4 lanes do once you merge to 2 lanes for the bridge or 2 lanes to fauntleroy? I’m not saying 1.8 is worth the change but at least put thought into the comment. I do like the sidewalks.

    I personally would like to see weekend bus service back for weekends. Taking the 56 with the kids to a ball game was awesome.

    Comment by WSEA — 2:10 pm November 8, 2013 #

  7. And the concept was discussed in 2008 at a meeting I will always remember – some interesting points surfaced there too, such as the city acknowledging it “strongly discourages” park-n-rides …
    .
    http://westseattleblog.com/2008/11/unique-place-unique-time-tackling-the-triangles-future/

    Comment by WSB — 2:16 pm November 8, 2013 #

  8. I love how Delridge is acknowledged as a busy corridor and yet Metro still feels it appropriate to cut service to the ONLY route that serves this area of West Seattle.

    Comment by MichelleWhen — 2:33 pm November 8, 2013 #

  9. Make sure the trees are DECIDUOUS so they can plug up the street drains.

    Comment by let them swim — 2:33 pm November 8, 2013 #

  10. “curb cuts”
    I don’t know what this means?

    Comment by transplantella — 3:30 pm November 8, 2013 #

  11. Curb cut is basically a driveway – the part where the curb is lower so you can drive in/out – at least in most references.

    Comment by WSB — 3:38 pm November 8, 2013 #

  12. A TOTAL waste of money plus further restricting an already bad traffic problem. In keeping with the Seattle way, take more and more lanes of traffic away from those mean polluting cars. Everyone should be riding the bus (oh wait, those are being cut back unless the County gets more tax $$ from who…US!) or riding their bikes. Oh but look at the pretty trees. Makes me feel good about myself… We planted trees… Don’t worry that they 1) block businesses 2) drop sap on cars that park under them and 3) all the leaves are blown into businesses when they open their doors to enter. Pretty trees….

    Comment by JS — 3:46 pm November 8, 2013 #

  13. Not that I necessarily agree with them, but I get the budget and lane configuration concerns being voiced here.

    but wtf @JS… do you really think trees are undesirable here?

    Comment by Jacob — 5:39 pm November 8, 2013 #

  14. Watch the empty buses.

    Comment by D.D.S. — 9:53 pm November 8, 2013 #

  15. @Mike: Those plans show 4 vehicle lanes.
    I don’t know if every engineering detail is worked out, but this looks like a huge improvement for safety to give drivers better sight lines at the angled intersections, by squaring them up. Even more improvement for pedestrians crossing Fauntleroy and the side streets, by shortening the crosswalk lengths. Better for kids, slower elderly people, people with disabilities. The cycle tracks will help eliminate car/bike conflict on the hill without reducing lands, so car, bike and bus traffic should be smoother and safer. Not a bus bulb in sight. Worth spending some money on West Seattle streets.

    Comment by Don Brubeck — 9:38 am November 9, 2013 #

  16. All I know is, these improvements will not be “cheaper” in the future.

    Comment by Robin — 12:15 am November 10, 2013 #

  17. Much needed improvements! Can’t wait.

    Comment by Quiz — 8:26 am November 10, 2013 #

  18. Glad to see these improvements. Very pleased!

    Comment by azgoat — 8:10 pm November 10, 2013 #

  19. Fantastic!! Looking forward to a more bike friendly community. This area is only going to get more housing density and existing infrastructure can’t support more vehicles during peak hours. Only option is to focus on public transportation and bike options.

    Comment by MH — 11:12 am November 18, 2013 #

  20. Delridge is were the real density is happening in West Seattle. It needs all the help it can get.
    There are new condos going in from the WS Bridge to White Center, a new multi-million dollar half way house just two blocks from an elementary school (that will hold two schools next year). All a street were people routinely drive 40 mph with too few crosswalks and no flashing school lights.

    Comment by Mark — 7:07 pm November 25, 2013 #

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