If you didn’t make it to the second meeting tonight about the project to make SW Roxbury safer between 35th SW and its east end at 4th/Olson, you’re not out of chances yet, but time is finite.
As with the first meeting earlier this month in White Center, this meeting was led by SDOT’s Jim Curtin and Brian Dougherty, though it was an interactive discussion much more than a “sit down and listen” meeting. Curtin did have a new, brief slide deck – that’s him at left, below, on the Roxhill Elementary stage with Chris Stripinis from the Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Neighborhood Council, who had explained backstory about WWRHAH and other groups asking the city to “do something about Roxbury Street.”
Thanks to Joe Szilagyi from WWRHAH, among tonight’s attendees, for that photo. Meantime, here’s the SDOT slide deck, shared by Curtin:
If you can’t see the Scribd document above, click here for the PDF version. After the presentation, with key points including the fact that Roxbury – classified as “a principal arterial” – has “a very high rate” of collisions, 223 in the last three years, including 11 pedestrians and two bicyclists being hit. Traffic volumes rise from 13,000 vehicles daily on the west end to 25,000 daily on the east end, “a pretty busy road.” The collision hot spots are all along the stretch.
The most collision-plagued intersection is at that busy east end, Olson/4th/Roxbury, and one suggestion was for a roundabout there – that would take money and time, Curtin said, not ruling it out, but for starters they’re considering reducing the spinout factor there by roughing up the pavement.
Other suggestions written on sticky notes and left along the multi-table rendering of Roxbury included working on the turn lanes at the intersection by Safeway, so people are clearer on which way vehicles are turning. All the suggestions are being collected, along with those to come at upcoming events such as these (from the slide deck):
WHAT’S NEXT: Early projects will include pavement repair near Roxbury Safeway – that will be fixed “very soon,” Curtin promised. Photo-enforcement cameras, as already announced, will be installed in Roxhill and Holy Family school zones. This entire project is being made possible by photo-enforcement revenue, he added. Longer-term – recommendations for the corridor are expected to be out in July.
This morning, an invitation-only design charrette downtown is devoted to taking a fresh look (as explained here) at one of West Seattle’s more-problematic intersections, and it was preceded by a walking tour on Tuesday afternoon. The intersection is the five-way meeting of Chelan, Spokane, Delridge, and West Marginal Way SW, just west of the “low bridge.” West Seattle-residing City Councilmember Tom Rasmussen was among those on hand for a firsthand look and discussion of its challenges and its potential.
Among the stops – a bus lane that wasn’t serving its originally intended purpose, because of route changes.
The bicycling/walking/running trail was scrutinized too; there’s already a project in the works just to the south at 23rd/Delridge to improve connectivity (as mentioned in our coverage of the most recent West Seattle Transportation Coalition meeting).
This morning’s design event was billed as for “stakeholders”; we’ll be checking back to find out what’s next.
(WSB photo from December 2013)
The 25th SW driveway dangers on the east side of Westwood Village were among the problems noted when the Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Neighborhood Council led a December walking tour of challenges in the evolving transit-hub zones around the shopping center (WSB coverage here). Tonight, chair Amanda Kay Helmick shares this update from Metro:
“We’re planning to shift the Route 60 starting this coming Saturday, moving the terminal on 25th Ave SW at SW Henderson by the Bank, up to the north end of the block by Staples. SDOT is updating the curb striping along here this week, so there will be room for the extra bus. SDOT will also extend the layover zone south of Henderson, used by Route 560, so that there will be more clearance and better visibility at the Westwood Driveway when there are two buses parked here. SDOT is able to work around the Metro coaches so there shouldn’t be any need for detours and there also shouldn’t be much impact to riders with this change other than when the 60 arrives at Westwood they would get off at Staples instead of the Bank. We will continue to use the stop by the Bank as a boarding zone for riders but it will no longer have any buses parking there.”
Helmick had early word of some of this in an update at this month’s WWRHAH meeting (WSB coverage here). She adds one more update: “In regards to the 70′ no-parking area west of the crosswalk at the Rapid Ride, Metro was asking SDOT today about the time frame.” So, watch for more updates, and check out WWRHAH’s March meeting next week.
Acting as the board of the newly created Transportation District, King County Councilmembers have officially voted to call an April 22nd vote on Proposition 1 – a car-tab fee ($40 more than what is charged now, since $20 of it replaces an expiring $20 fee) and sales-tax increase (1/10th of a percent) to raise money to cover the rest of Metro‘s funding gap and the cost of road repair/projects. Read the full text of what they approved here; for all the numbers, go here. Here’s how a county news release sums up what the measure will do if approved by voters:
·Increase the King County sales tax by 0.1 of a percent for ten years;
·Establish a $60 vehicle fee;
·Distribute 60 percent of the net revenues of the ballot measure to provide funding to maintain Metro transit service hours at current levels. If any funds remain after maintaining transit service hours, evenly split the remaining funds 50/50 between transit and unincorporated road purposes;
·40 percent would go to cities for transportation improvements and the county for unincorporated area road purposes allocated based on population;
·Specify that the funds must be used for transportation improvement projects contained in the County’s, Cities’ or Puget Sound Regional Council’s approved transportation plans (as updated by the individual jurisdictions);
·Establish a low-income rebate program that rebates $20 of vehicle fee for vehicle owners whose household income is less than 45 percent of the county’s median household income.
11:25 AM: King County Executive Dow Constantine calls it “great news for everyone who commutes on the SR99 corridor, especially those coming from West Seattle and Burien.” His office has just shared a letter from WSDOT (read it here), saying the state has agreed to extend “mitigation” money – funding bus service covering effects from Highway 99 construction – through the end of next year. That money was to expire in the middle of this year, leading to one round of Metro cuts in June. This does NOT affect the larger round of cuts expected to ensue systemwide when other funding expires, and that’s the funding that would be replaced by what’s in a ballot measure that’s expected to go to voters in April – depending on the outcome of a vote this afternoon. More to come.
ADDED 11:52 AM: In case the PDF link above doesn’t work for you, here’s the letter from WSDOT, embedded via Scribd:
Our area’s County Councilmember Joe McDermott says, “This wildly successful mitigation service has moved more people through the Alaskan Way Viaduct while reducing the vehicles using it. As a C Line commuter, I am pleased the state is continuing the funding as the project continues.”
And he reiterates the earlier point that this is only a partial reprieve – while it extends funding for the service hours added to make up for the 99 construction’s effects, there’s still a gap that would require cutting up to 17 percent of Metro’s service systemwide.
McDermott and the rest of the council, sitting as the Transportation Benefit District board, will take public comments at 3 pm today in council chambers at the county courthouse downtown before potentially voting to send a measure to the ballot asking voters to approve a car-tab fee and sales-tax increase to cover that gap and raise money for roads. Later in the day, the Move King County Now advocacy group plans a kickoff of its campaign for the ballot measure (5:30 pm at the pub Fado, 1st/Columbia downtown). The extension follows the county’s ongoing lobbying efforts to get the state to agree to one, as Executive Constantine’s transportation adviser Chris Arkills told the West Seattle Transportation Coalition at its meeting earlier this month (WSB coverage here).
MORE BACKSTORY: For an explanation of the “mitigation” money, its history (dating back to the 2008 announcement), and the cuts that Metro planned if it wasn’t extended, see this WSB story from December.
If you drive/ride/walk along Roxbury, you might wonder what happened to the curb-bulb work at 30th, mentioned here before it started, and mentioned again in a recent WSB traffic report when Bradi sent the photo at left, saying the workers were absent, the signage was insufficient, and she’d popped a tire there. Nearby resident Donn DeVore, a past Westwood Neighborhood Council leader, e-mailed SDOT to ask what had happened, because the project appeared “abandoned.” The current Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Neighborhood Council jumped in. And tonight, SDOT’s Jim Curtin says it’s a combination of factors – the contractor also is working on another site that’s part of the same contract (Olympic Hills in North Seattle) and has had to deal with the recent heavy rain and its inhospitability to concrete work. But the contractor is expected to be back at the site tomorrow (Friday) for the concrete pour. Curtin adds, “Even with these weather related delays, the project is anticipated to be completed within the number of work days for this project. Barring further weather-related disruptions, the project is currently scheduled to be complete by the end of March.” This project is not part of the SW Roxbury safety work that’s launching (with another meeting coming up next Wednesday, 6 pm at Roxhill Elementary); it’s part of pedestrian-safety-in-school-areas work.
Since the big signal-replacement project at California/Fauntleroy happened without advance announcement, we promised to follow up with SDOT. Today, we not only have the overview, we also have the time-lapse video above, from pre-dawn Saturday through late Sunday afternoon. SDOT spokesperson Rick Sheridan explains that the project was carried out in an unusual manner:
The work at the intersection of California and Fauntleroy was a full replacement of the intersection’s signal infrastructure. The poles and signal equipment there were very old and the hardware was failing.
Instead of working over a normal two-week period (from only 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. to avoid traffic), we completed the work over the weekend in a record 36 hours. The California and Fauntleroy intersection now has modern traffic signal equipment featuring new poles, signal heads and wires. We apologize for any inconvenience caused by the work but believe the signal system upgrades will serve the neighborhood well.
The signals previously had numerous problems, reported here repeatedly last year.
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
If you’ve been to North Delridge’s Brandon Node business district – home to a cluster of businesses including Pho Aroma and Olympic Pizza restaurants – in the past four days, you might have noticed the “no parking” signs that went up Friday afternoon in what’s been a perpendicular-parking area on the north side of SW Findlay, west of Delridge (map).
The “no parking” signs alongside the mural on the south wall of the Super 24 store have a double meaning: Not only “no parking” because of an impending roadside project, but “no parking” in those spots permanently, once that project is done.
It’s a community-proposed, city-funded project, but Pho Aroma’s owners Melinda Nguyen and Scott Dang say business owners didn’t know about the project until a flyer arrived a few weeks ago announcing it was happening.
The project will remove the six perpendicular public parking spaces along the wall alongside Super 24. As explained by SDOT’s John Vander Sluis:
Tomorrow is the next official “service change” for Metro, and some West Seattle routes will see changes. RapidRide C Line will add a northbound evening trip and southbound afternoon trip; downtown stops are changing for Route 37; and when Routes 50 and 60 get to Beacon Hill, they won’t be stopping inside the VA Medical Center grounds because of construction. All of the above, and other service changes taking effect tomorrow, are explained here.
If you’re following the saga of the Highway 99 tunnel-machine trouble – another update this afternoon, including word it’s likely that a dig from the surface will be needed so the machine can be fixed from its front end:
Seattle Tunnel Partners (STP) informed WSDOT today that they expect to receive a plan on potential repairs to the SR 99 tunneling machine from the machine’s manufacturer Hitachi Zosen by the end of this month. This will include a schedule for how long the repair work would take. Earlier this week, STP told us the plan may be completed by the end of the week, but said today more time is needed for the Hitachi to prepare it.
It appears likely that repairs will be made by digging a shaft from the surface so the machine can be entered from the front. Entering the back of the machine would require removal of more equipment and likely take longer. STP will begin work next week on the design of the shaft so if that option is selected, some of the necessary work will already be underway.
This past Monday, as reported here and elsewhere, we got first word it will be “months” before tunneling can resume. The tunnel originally was expected to open by the end of 2015, with Viaduct demolition following its opening; no schedule revision’s been announced yet.
We didn’t get to the first SW Roxbury Safety Project meeting last night because of breaking news, but Joe Szilagyi from the Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Community Council did, and you can see his report on the WWRHAH website. He says the SDOT team got “tons of feedback” and provided new details on what happens next.
— WWRHAH Council (@WWRHAH) February 14, 2014
In the immediate future, the previously announced February 26th meeting at Roxhill Elementary is the next step, but after that, as you’ll see in Joe’s report, there’s a further timetable for conversations and implementation.
West Seattle Transportation Coalition: Why they’re backing potential ballot measure ‘with caveats’; other hot topicsFebruary 13, 2014 at 12:33 pm | In Transportation, West Seattle news | 2 Comments
(Metro bus yard last November, the day we covered a media briefing on potential Metro cuts/changes)
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
Though the King County Council hasn’t finalized what it’s likely sending to voters in April, asking for bus and road funding, the West Seattle Transportation Coalition has endorsed it.
As we tweeted during the WSTC’s wide-ranging meeting Tuesday night at Neighborhood House’s High Point Center:
after voting to take a vote, the @WSTCoalition has voted to endorse the county's 'Plan B' bus/roads funding proposal 'with caveats'
— West Seattle Blog (@westseattleblog) February 12, 2014
Here’s how they got there – and what else was discussed that you should know about what’s happening on the roads and paths around West Seattle:
Almost exactly seven years ago, the Admiral Safeway gas station added biodiesel with pomp, circumstance, and even participation by then-Mayor Greg Nickels. It was the company’s first location in the nation to offer the part-vegetable-oil fuel mix. Now, the alternative fuel has been dropped. We found out from WSB reader Jay F, a biodiesel user, and checked with regional Safeway spokesperson Sara Osborne, who confirmed it via e-mail late today, explaining: “Simply stated, there was no longer enough demand to justify the investment..” That leaves the Propel Fuels mini-station at 35th/Barton, which offers B20 and B50, and Hans VW at 35th/Graham, which offers B100. (WSB photo from February 2007 – check those prices!)
5:30 PM: Metro just announced it’s mostly returning to regular routes, with a few exceptions, which might change in the hours ahead, so we won’t list them here – check the list online. Doesn’t look like we’re in danger of the melting snow refreezing overnight, since the forecast calls for rain.
8:15 PM: And now, Metro says it’s returned to normal on all routes.
Back on Monday, you might recall, early-morning runs were canceled on the Fauntleroy-Vashon-Southworth route, which then was on a one-boat-short schedule until noon, leading to backups. It wasn’t a case of post-Super Bowl sickout, and it was no last-minute surprise, confirmed WSF boss David Moseley in his weekly “newsletter” today:
I want to apologize to customers of the Fauntleroy/Southworth/Vashon Island (triangle) route for the service disruption experienced on Monday morning when we went to a two-boat sailing schedule due to a lack of available crew. We had vessel maintenance and crew training scheduled for Monday and when we realized that we could not cover shifts, we should have canceled training and asked that the crews to report to the vessel. I have made it clear that should this same situation occur in the future, we need to prioritize service.
WSDOT tweeted that morning that 200 calls had been made but fill-ins couldn’t be found. The tweet mentioned maintenance but not training.
(July 2010 crash at 8th/Roxbury, WSB/White Center Now photo)
Want to see SW Roxbury a whole lot safer than it is now? You’ll recall the campaign launched by the Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Community Council with the support of other area neighborhood advocates. Now, it’s announced that the city has scheduled two meetings about the improvements to follow:
*6:30 pm Thursday, February 13th in White Center’s Greenbridge neighborhood, 9800 8th SW
*6 pm Wednesday, February 26th, at Roxhill Elementary School, 30th/Roxbury
West Seattle ferry-alert update: Fauntleroy-Vashon-Southworth schedule back to normal as of noon MondayFebruary 2, 2014 at 11:41 pm | In Transportation, West Seattle news | 19 Comments
11:41 PM SUNDAY: Just in from Washington State Ferries:
Due to a lack of qualified crew, the following sailings are cancelled for Mon. 2/3:
4:05 am Vashon to Fauntleroy, 4:25 am Fauntleroy to Southworth, 5:00 am Southworth to Vashon and Fauntleroy, 5:50 am Fauntleroy to Vashon, and 6:10 am Fauntleroy to Vashon.
Beginning with the 6:15 am Vashon to Southworth sailing, the route will sail on a two-boat schedule. … Please see the two-boat schedule.
MONDAY 8:47 AM UPDATE: WSF says the three-boat schedule will resume as of noon.
11:59 AM UPDATE: Some context from WSDOT in this conversation with Maggie:
— Washington State DOT (@wsdot) February 3, 2014
We’ve talked a lot about road safety here – and this week, new signage in multiple areas of West Seattle is being noticed. First, in the wake of the most recent discussions about 35th Avenue SW, temporary signage has been brought in. SDOT‘s Jim Curtin explains:
Two Speed Watch Trailers were recently deployed to 35th Avenue SW in an effort to reduce speeds on the corridor. These devices detect and display the speed of oncoming vehicles and provide direct feedback to drivers about their speed. They do not record data but raise awareness about speeds on this principal arterial roadway. Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) studies show that these signs generally result in speed reductions in the range of 1 to 7 mph. In Seattle, our experiences with these devices typically result in speed reductions of 3 to 5 mph and significant reductions in the number of people traveling 10+ miles per hour over the speed limit. These function in a similar manner to the permanent radar speed signs that exist in four locations on 35th Avenue SW.
The portable speed watch trailers will remain in place for the next week or two and will be deployed periodically on the corridor. At this point, we are evaluating other measures that might help address speeding and other safety concerns on 35th.
Meantime, the online petition launched by neighborhood advocates on Tuesday passed 500 signatures today.
SCHOOL-ZONE BEACONS: We’ve been working on a closer look at safety concerns on Delridge by the Boren school building, which houses K-5 STEM now and will also be temporary home to Arbor Heights Elementary for the next school year. Halfway through the second year of classes there, Boren is finally getting flashing lights – “beacons” – to warn drivers about the school zone.
Robin Graham from the K-5 STEM PTA shared that photo of installation that was under way today. After hearing from a reader about an installation under way on California SW near Gatewood Elementary, we checked with SDOT’s Brian Dougherty to ask for the big picture:
There are three new sets of flashing school zone beacons being installed this month in West Seattle. They are located at:
· Delridge Way SW approaching SW Juneau St for the STEM (and future Arbor Heights) School
· SW Thistle approaching 26th Ave SW for Denny Middle School and Chief Sealth High School
· California Ave SW approaching SW Frontenac St for Gatewood Elementary
None of these will include permanent automated speed-enforcement cameras at this time. The beacons have all been installed and there is some sign work that needs to occur before the beacons can be turned on. The sign work is scheduled to occur in February and I expect the beacons will be fully functional sometime around March 1st. This spring, we will ask Seattle Police to conduct targeted enforcement to remind drivers not to exceed 20 mph when the lights are flashing.
There are two other spots where speed cameras ARE on the way – as previously reported – on SW Roxbury by Roxhill Elementary and Holy Family School. As of our most recent check, those are not expected to be in operation until this fall, as the next school year begins.
West Seattle traffic alert: ‘Low bridge’ closing for 4 hours Friday night; Viaduct slowdowns Sunday morningJanuary 29, 2014 at 4:35 pm | In Transportation, West Seattle news | 10 Comments
4:35 PM: Just announced by SDOT:
The Spokane Street Bridge to West Seattle will be closed to motor vehicles, bicyclists and pedestrians on Friday night, Jan. 31, from 8 p.m. to midnight. The closure will allow a contractor working for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to dredge the channel where silt has accumulated. Drivers are advised to use the high-level West Seattle Bridge during this time.
The contractor will begin dredging tomorrow (Thursday) night, but will not need to close the bridge to motor vehicles until Friday night to finish the work. The channel will remain open for marine traffic.
ADDED 5 PM: Thanks to David and Bob for tipping us to this alert also just announced: “SPD will conduct rolling slowdowns on the SR 99 Alaskan Way Viaduct for filming operations. The rolling slowdowns will take place between the West Seattle Bridge and the Western Ave Exit from 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. on Sunday, February 2, 2014.”
ADDED THURSDAY: From an SDOT rep in response to the question of whether there will be any type of transportation to get people on foot/bikes around during the closure – since they can’t use the high-level bridge as an alternative – short answer: No. But the contractor might be able to take less time than the four-hour window. We’ll monitor the situation as best we’re able to on Friday night so we can publish an update when the bridge is back to regular operations.
We’ve had some bouts of hard rain this afternoon – don’t know if that figured into this, but a vehicle wound up on its side in a crash at
4th 5th Place SW/Roxbury this past hour. Thanks to Sherrie for sending the photo (Brian sent one too). Seattle Fire spokesperson Kyle Moore tells us no injuries were reported – the 19-year-old driver was unhurt.
Though they’re still not saying what exactly shut down the Highway 99 tunnel machine – the pipe, the boulders, or something else – tonight WSDOT has announced that it expects tunneling to resume this week. According to tonight’s update, it’ll go two more feet, and then will stop for evaluation. If it gets the green light to continue after that, the next milestone is 500 feet down the line, where it would be stopped for maintenance before going under the Alaskan Way Viaduct – which, as first reported here last April, is expected to be closed while the tunnel machine crosses underneath. The machine has been stopped for seven weeks.
Neighborhood traffic-safety questions? Get answers with West Seattle Block Watch Captains Network tomorrowJanuary 27, 2014 at 11:51 am | In Safety, Transportation, West Seattle news | Comments Off
You’re invited! Here’s what’s up when the West Seattle Block Watch Captains Network meets tomorrow night:
If your neighborhood has concerns about traffic, what can you do to resolve them? Did you know you can borrow a radar gun to document speeding? Want to know how to go about getting a traffic circle? Stephen Padua, Neighborhood Programs Coordinator from SDOT, will educate us on the different resources and options available to neighborhoods and how you can effectively address other traffic issues. During the second portion of our meeting, we want to hear about any other issues that have been problematic in your neighborhoods since our last meeting in October.
You don’t have to be a captain, or even IN a Block Watch, to be there. 6:30 pm Tuesday (January 28th), Southwest Precinct meeting room (off Webster just west of Delridge).
(December photo by LB Bruce, shared via the WSB Flickr group)
Though Highway 99 is having trouble underground, projects on and above the surface are making progress. After Wednesday’s announcement that the Atlantic St. Overpass is about to open, we asked WSDOT on the progress of the Timber Bridge/Spokane Street Overcrossing replacement south of the West Seattle Bridge. When work began last February, WSDOT projected it would last until June of this year; now, spokesperson Broch Bender told WSB today, they “hope to open the new bridge by mid-March.” Before then, an overnight closure is planned February 8-9, both directions of 99 at that spot, hours not yet finalized, to connect the two sides of the new bridge, before the final phase of work.
Driving/riding between West Seattle and downtown on 99, you’ve been going under the under-construction Atlantic Street Overpass just south of the remaining elevated Alaskan Way Viaduct for months. Now, it’s about to open. The announcement ahead:
35th SW memorial walk, report #2: Another death, another meeting – will major safety improvements follow, this time?January 21, 2014 at 4:09 pm | In High Point, Safety, Transportation, West Seattle news | 55 Comments
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
James St. Clair‘s niece choked up as she struggled with saying her uncle “was” rather than “is.”
But her words were clear and plaintive as she wondered aloud “what could happen in another seven years if it’s going to take that long to make changes?”
“Seven years” referred to the time elapsed between the death of 27-year-old Susanne Scaringi, who lost her life bicycling at 35th and Graham in September 2006, and the death of Mr. St. Clair, 69, hit and killed while walking across 35th at that same intersection last month.
Darlene Saxby spoke about her uncle, and her fears, during the community meeting that followed Saturday’s community-organized Memorial Walk on Saturday. (She also spoke during the memorial, as seen in our first report, with video, here.) After words and song in his honor, yards from where he died, about 20 participants walked on to Neighborhood House’s High Point Center for that conversation.
For Darlene, this was new. For some in High Point, it was achingly familiar. In April 2011, after the death of a motorcyclist at 35th/Juneau, a roadside memorial:
A roadside rally:
Some extra enforcement:
And a discussion of safety.
Flash back across another two-and-a-half-year span before all that. In September 2008, a teenager was hit and seriously hurt crossing at 35th and Juneau:
Soon after that, local youth joined in a safety rally along 35th:
And that in turn was less than a year after a previous plea for safety improvements, days after 85-year-old Oswald Clement was killed crossing at 35th/Othello. Between his death and the teenager’s injury, yet another person had died on 35th – Gregory Hampel, a 39-year-old hit by a car while trying to get his dog out of the road near their home.
Five lives, seven years. The challenges had not changed, but some of the faces and names had changed:
Potentially major changes in school transportation are proceeding somewhat quietly down the road to a vote at this week’s Seattle School Board meeting. A local mom suggested we write about this to increase the chances people know before it’s too late to even try to comment. The proposed changes came out at the last board meeting before Christmas, and are up for a vote this Wednesday (January 22nd). They are summarized on the district website here, including these toplines:
The District is proposing to:
• End yellow bus transportation to option school students who live outside that school’s middle school attendance area
• Eliminate transportation to elementary school students who live outside that school’s attendance area
• Sunset any previous “grandfathering” of transportation that was allowed when the New Student Assignment Plan took effect in 2010 11.
• Standardize all yellow bus arrival times: 7:35 a.m., 8:25 a.m. and 9:15 a.m. Please note these are not start times for schools, but the arrival times for buses. Next fall’s school bell times will be set later this winter.
The district says these changes would save more than $3 million. For full details on the proposed changes, see this district document which color-codes exactly what’s been written into the policy and what’s been taken out. The school-by-school list of next year’s proposed bus arrival and departure times can be seen here; again, as noted above, those are not the same as the bell times; you can compare to the current list of arrival/departure times. In our area, Pathfinder K-8 stands to see the largest schedule change, since it’s one of five K-8s that would be moved to notably earlier arrival times – Pathfinder’s arrival time is proposed as 7:35 am, 25 minutes earlier than it is now.
Will the King County Transportation Benefit District proposal to raise money for Metro and roads go to voters? The next step is a briefing Tuesday at the County Council’s Transportation, Economy, and Environment Committee, whose members include our area’s Councilmember Joe McDermott. It’s set for 9:30 am Tuesday and the announcement says the committee will hear from a “panel of city leaders, human service providers, transit users, and business and labor representatives” including:
*Tom Rasmussen, Chair, Seattle City Council Transportation Committee
*Claudia Balducci, Mayor, City of Bellevue
*Nancy Backus, Mayor, City of Auburn
*Rob Johnson, Executive Director, Transportation Choices Coalition
*Jessica Szelag, Executive Director, Commute Seattle
*Lauren Thomas, Interim Chief Executive Officer, Hopelink
*David Freiboth, Executive Secretary Treasurer, M.L. King County Labor Council
The agenda’s not on the committee’s webpage yet, so we don’t know if there’s a public-comment period, but the meeting is open to the public as always, 10th floor of the County Courthouse downtown, and will be shown live online and on cable 22.
HOW TO HAVE A SAY: The measure requires a County Council vote before going to the voters. The date for that is not yet set. You can share your opinion with the council via firstname.lastname@example.org.
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