West Seattle Blog... » Transportation http://westseattleblog.com West Seattle news, 24/7 Wed, 27 Aug 2014 18:56:10 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.4.2 Fauntleroy ‘Boulevard’ plan update: Community meeting set for September 23rd http://westseattleblog.com/2014/08/fauntleroy-boulevard-plan-update-community-meeting-set-for-september-23rd/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/08/fauntleroy-boulevard-plan-update-community-meeting-set-for-september-23rd/#comments Thu, 21 Aug 2014 01:21:33 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=283091

The date is now set for the promised community open house about the Fauntleroy Way SW Boulevard Project in The Triangle, currently in “early design,” tentatively scheduled for construction late next year if city leaders approve project funding: 5-7 pm Tuesday, September 23rd, is the date for that communitywide discussion of the project, proposed for Fauntleroy Way SW between 35th and Alaska. SDOT’s Maribel Cruz tells WSB they’ve had briefings in recent weeks with:

· Seattle Pedestrian Advisory Board
· Seattle Bicycle Advisory Board
· Freight Advisory Board
· Washington State Ferries
· West Seattle Transportation Coalition
· West Seattle Bike Connections
· West Seattle Junction Association

We were at the WSTC/WSBC briefing last month, along with one member of each of those groups. No major new details emerged, but the question that arose in comments on our July 15th report, “what about the Trader Joe’s onstreet loading zone?” was asked, and the reply was that they’re still discussing options. As a “boulevard,” that section of Fauntleroy will have “no loading zones and no parking,” the project team said.

Background on the project, as well as details of its status, are on the official SDOT webpage. The September 23rd meeting will be at the Senior Center of West Seattle (Oregon/California).

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47th/Admiral signal: Design’s done; construction set for this fall http://westseattleblog.com/2014/08/47thadmiral-signal-designs-done-construction-set-for-this-fall/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/08/47thadmiral-signal-designs-done-construction-set-for-this-fall/#comments Tue, 19 Aug 2014 19:21:17 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=282994

SDOT has announced that design is done and construction will start this fall – possibly as soon as October – on the long-sought signal at 47th SW and Admiral Way, and that it will be accompanied by four striped crosswalks, as seen in the new design graphic above. This fall will mark three years since the Admiral Neighborhood Association ramped up its campaign for the signal with a rally in memory of 26-year-old Tatsuo Nakata, killed at the intersection in fall 2006. It took a lot of pushing to get funding committed – in early 2012, SDOT was still saying 47th/Admiral wasn’t high on the list. Then last year, the City Council made changes in then-Mayor McGinn’s spending plan in order to find full funding for the signal.

Here are key parts of the finalized plan, according to SDOT:

*Installing a new traffic signal
*Adding four additional striped crosswalks
*Upgrading six curb ramps at key corners of the intersection to be compliant with current American Disability Act (ADA) standards
*Replacing the existing center-turn lane with left-turn-only pockets on SW Admiral Way
*Removing minimal parking up to 50 feet from the intersection approaches on the north and south sides of 47th Avenue SW and SW Waite Street
*Removing the existing pedestrian signal

According to SDOT’s Maribel Cruz, “We anticipate construction will begin late this fall and will last for approximately three months, depending on weather conditions. The project team plans to host a community drop-in session at a nearby café in October, prior to the start of construction, and will continue to keep the community informed as the project progresses.” More information is online at this newly updated project page.

P.S. We should note that this intersection will be a lot busier soon, with Aegis Living planning to build a new retirement center on the 4700 SW Admiral Way site of the former Life Care Center, proposed to include 48 assisted-living apartments and 33 memory-care apartments..

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Ferry-alert update: Fauntleroy-Vashon-Southworth back to 3 boats http://westseattleblog.com/2014/08/ferry-alert-update-fauntleroy-vashon-southworth-back-to-3-boats/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/08/ferry-alert-update-fauntleroy-vashon-southworth-back-to-3-boats/#comments Mon, 18 Aug 2014 07:51:23 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=282869 We noticed on Washington State Ferries‘ VesselWatch that the M/V Evergreen State, which broke down on Saturday, was back on the move as of earlier this hour – and now, WSF has sent official word that it’s back to the three-boat Fauntleroy-Vashon-Southworth for today’s morning commute:

Necessary repairs on the Evergreen State have been made and the route will return to the three boat schedule on Monday, August 18 beginning with the 4:05 am sailing from Vashon.

Without the Evergreen State, the “Triangle route” had been down to 2 boats all weekend, with long waits.

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2-wheel tour: West Seattle Bike Connections ride with councilmember http://westseattleblog.com/2014/08/2-wheel-tour-west-seattle-bike-connections-ride-with-councilmember/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/08/2-wheel-tour-west-seattle-bike-connections-ride-with-councilmember/#comments Sun, 17 Aug 2014 19:09:42 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=282815

(At new Junction ‘bike corral,’ last stop on the tour)
West Seattle Bike Connections members spent part of their weekend taking City Councilmember Tom Rasmussen, who chairs the council’s Transportation Committee, on a tour “to get a first-hand look at some of the routes and intersections in the Seattle Bicycle Master Plan that we think are high priority for funding and implementation,” according to WSBC president Don Brubeck, who shares photos and this report from Saturday’s tour:

We started at Highland Park Improvement Club. First stop: The crosswalk at 11th Ave SW (a planned Greenway route) at SW Holden St, a busy arterial. We are supporting the Highland Park Action Committee’s application to SDOT for flashing beacons to help make this a safe crossing for kids going to schools and playgrounds in Highland Park and Riverview.

Then south on 10th Ave to SW Thistle at Highland Park Playfield. These are mapped as future Greenway routes, and seem ideal low traffic streets for walking and riding bikes. A set of public steps at 14th allows pedestrians to continue through on Thistle, but stops cars and bikes. We’d like to see a “runnel” gutter for bike wheels added to the steps, which are under construction now.

Then north on 17th Ave SW, which is a neighborhood Greenway route currently in the planning and design stage. The proposed route jogs over to 15th Ave on Kenyon, then back over to 17th at Webster. These jogs did not seem realistic to our group. Who would want to go 2 blocks east out of their way, and then 2 blocks west back to their route? And the intersections of Kenyon & 16th, 15th & Holden, and Webster & 16th would all need marked crosswalks and signals to be safe Greenway crossings. It looks much easier to just improve Holden for the short block from 17th to 16th, and then 16th to Webster, to get around the block that does not go through on 17th.

Continuing north on 17th from Webster to Myrtle, there’s a spot that does not go through that is planned to have a bike/ped switchback ramp. This will be a ideal safe route to Sanislo Elementary. If more kids can safely walk and ride to Sanislo, there will be less car congestion and hazard around the school and the beginning and end of the school day.

From there, we continued north on the partially completed 21st Avenue Delridge Greenway. It’s a great route along the ridge for bike riding, very attractive for commuting to SODO downtown, or connecting to the Alki or West Duwamish trails. Several on this ride use it regularly. However, for pedestrians, and especially for wheelchair users, there is quite a bit of work left to do.

Then we dropped down to the 5-way intersection and Chelan/Spokane/Delridge/West Marginal, and talked about the planning in progress for that major connection point. From here to the Alki Trail. A look at the “Kitty Harbor” corner of Spokane and Harbor Ave, where we have an SDOT funding application in with Alki and Admiral neighborhood associations.

Then a potty stop for our 2-year-old rider at Luna Park Cafe, and a break before climbing up Avalon. Tom Rasmussen updated the group on the Fauntleroy Boulevard Project, which is now midway in design and public outreach, and promises to be a much-friendlier welcome to West Seattle, with wide sidewalks, safer crosswalks, and bike routes to serve the rapidly developing area.

At mile 6.6, we reached the West Seattle Junction, and parked in the new bike corral, installed after a push from Councilmember Rasmussen, and much appreciated.

You can see the updated Bicycle Master Plan here.

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How will Metro’s low-income fare work? New details today http://westseattleblog.com/2014/08/how-will-metros-low-income-fare-work-new-details-today/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/08/how-will-metros-low-income-fare-work-new-details-today/#comments Thu, 14 Aug 2014 18:41:17 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=282542 While other potential changes for Metro next year aren’t yet finalized, two things are certain – a reduced fare for low-income riders will take effect on the same day as a 25-cent general fare increase. Today, King County Executive Dow Constantine announced how it’ll work, based on recommendations from a task force:

*The reduced fare will take effect March 1, 2015, and will be $1.50 a ride.

*Riders who qualify must use an ORCA card and cannot pay with cash. No fee will be charged for a new card or renewal. A $5 fee will be charged to replace a lost or stolen card.

*The eligibility threshold for a person to qualify for the low-income fare is 200 percent of the Federal Poverty Level, currently $23,340 for an individual.

*Eligibility must be re-verified every other year. The low-income fare will expire 24 months after the card is issued.

*After expiration, it can be used as a regular adult fare card.

*The low-income fare will be limited to one card per person. Each card must be registered in the ORCA system to an eligible adult.

You can read the full announcement here.

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Sound Transit light rail for West Seattle? Another discussion, this time @ City Hall http://westseattleblog.com/2014/08/sound-transit-light-rail-for-west-seattle-another-discussion-this-time-city-hall/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/08/sound-transit-light-rail-for-west-seattle-another-discussion-this-time-city-hall/#comments Tue, 12 Aug 2014 21:48:36 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=282295

Cup-half-full version: West Seattle could have light rail as soon as 2026.

Cup-half-empty version: West Seattle won’t get light rail any sooner than 2026.

That was the bottom line of a briefing that was part of the City Council Transportation Committee‘s meeting this morning. Potential West Seattle light rail wasn’t the only topic – in fact, it was the last part of the Sound Transit guest appearance, which in turn was only part of a busy agenda (above is Seattle Channel‘s video of the entire meeting – the briefing starts 35 minutes in). The briefing followed the order of the slide deck. And however you view that potential date, it would depend on West Seattle being written into Sound Transit’s Long-Range Plan when it’s updated later this year; it didn’t make it into the plan previously, ST reiterated today, because of the since-scrapped plan for monorail service between West Seattle and downtown.

The slide deck itself didn’t contain the potential 2026 date – West Seattle-residing Councilmember Tom Rasmussen, who chairs the committee, asked for a date, and all ST reps would give him was that 2016 would be the earliest a “Sound Transit 3″ measure could go before voters. Perhaps a “board member” could speculate further, they said, with all eyes turning to Councilmember Mike O’Brien, a board member who happened to be right there at the table.

He then said that in the most optimistic of scenarios, it would take another 10 years to build potential West Seattle service, if it was on the plan, then on a ballot measure, and approved.

Making it clear he wasn’t just describing West Seattle but also including other not-currently-served communities, O’Brien said, “we know people out there are screaming for it.”

When they got to the WS possibilities, ST briefers again went over the scenarios that have been presented in recent months, dating back to this Executive Committee briefing and two briefings in West Seattle, including the WS Chamber of Commerce luncheon we covered last month. As pointed out at those discussions, if there is a West Seattle proposal, it wouldn’t necessarily be one of these scenarios, but could combine elements of them. And ST is considering “bus rapid transit” as well as light rail (LRT). Routes for LRT could just go into West Seattle and White Center, transferring people to buses to get to Burien, Tukwila, and Renton from there, or might go all the way to Renton, stopping in eastern West Seattle along the way – or options inbetween.

Rasmussen asked how the city could request that ST be sure to include West Seattle; staffers at the table verified that they already had sent a letter to ST asking it to include Seattle corridors including ours “and others that are consistent with” the city’s transit plan.

Once the Long-Range Plan is updated – with or without West Seattle – ST would be in a position to “move into system planning,” in other words, coming up with a proposal that then could go to voters for funding, and that process would be expected to run through most of 2015. ST also called attention to King County launching its own long-range planning and a directive from County Executive Dow Constantine – who currently chairs the ST Executive Board – to make sure that Metro and ST plans are “not just coordinated, but deeply integrated.” A report on that, it was mentioned, is expected to be out next month.

P.S. The meeting also included the committee’s first guest appearance by SDOT director nominee Scott Kubly, as part of his confirmation process. A vote isn’t expected until next month. (Among other things, Kubly asked Councilmember Rasmussen to give him a guided tour of West Seattle sometime soon.)

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Followup: How new SDOT director answered Councilmember Rasmussen’s questions; plus, another Sound Transit light-rail discussion http://westseattleblog.com/2014/08/followup-how-new-sdot-director-answered-councilmember-rasmussens-questions-plus-another-sound-transit-light-rail-discussion/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/08/followup-how-new-sdot-director-answered-councilmember-rasmussens-questions-plus-another-sound-transit-light-rail-discussion/#comments Fri, 08 Aug 2014 20:21:44 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=281925 Back on July 25th, we published the 17 questions City Councilmember Tom Rasmussen had sent to new SDOT director Scott Kubly, looking ahead to his confirmation hearing before the Transportation Committee, which Rasmussen chairs. That hearing is part of the committee’s agenda for next Tuesday (August 12th, 9:30 am, City Hall). From the agenda, here’s the full document with Kubly’s answers inline.

You’ll notice he also promises the requested analysis of June’s “4 miles, 5 hours” Highway 99 shutdown (most recent followup here) by September 30th.

Also on the agenda for that same meeting: Another discussion of Sound Transit‘s Long Range Plan Update. The comment period on its draft environmental-impact statement is now closed, but this is still another opportunity for questions/answers about whether the update will include a proposal for light rail serving West Seattle. Here’s the slide deck that will be shown during the Tuesday meeting – note that it also discusses the potential Ballard service, as well as “South King County,” which includes West Seattle. ST’s presenter will be Rachel Smith, whose recent West Seattle Chamber of Commerce appearance was covered here.

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West Seattle road work: SW Roxbury paving next week http://westseattleblog.com/2014/08/west-seattle-road-work-sw-roxbury-paving-next-week/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/08/west-seattle-road-work-sw-roxbury-paving-next-week/#comments Fri, 08 Aug 2014 01:21:31 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=281876 During this past week’s two meetings on the SW Roxbury Safety Project (WSB 7/31 coverage is here, 8/4 coverage here), SDOT’s Jim Curtin mentioned that paving was imminent for the stretch between 25th and 27th SW. And indeed, the announcement has just arrived:

Paving crews from the Seattle Department of Transportation will work on Southwest Roxbury Street on Tuesday and Wednesday, Aug. 12 and 13 of next week. They will pave the stretch of Roxbury between 25th Avenue Southwest and 27th Avenue Southwest, working from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day. One travel lane in each direction will remain open. A Police Officer will be stationed at each intersection to assist traffic. All sidewalks and crosswalks will remain open.

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Move RapidRide route to California SW in The Junction? SDOT is looking at it http://westseattleblog.com/2014/08/move-rapidride-route-to-california-sw-in-the-junction-sdot-is-looking-at-it/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/08/move-rapidride-route-to-california-sw-in-the-junction-sdot-is-looking-at-it/#comments Thu, 07 Aug 2014 22:48:24 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=281864 Should the outbound RapidRide C Line run on California in the heart of The Junction instead of jogging onto Edmunds, 44th, and Alaska? Checking out a reader tip that this was under consideration, we asked Metro – which in turn pointed us to SDOT, whose Marybeth Turner confirms it:

We have been looking for projects to improve the speed and reliability for the RapidRide C Line. One of the projects that was identified is to move the stop on California and Alaska to the east so the RapidRide bus can use California Avenue. This would save about a minute of travel time.

We are currently conducting a feasibility analysis to see if there is enough room and the what costs are involved. No decision has been made on whether this project will go forward. … We plan to reach out to the community to discuss the options this fall.

Back in 2008, when RapidRide’s West Seattle route was still under development, there was some talk of having it turn onto Alaska from California, but concerns voiced at the time included how it would affect the walk-all-ways intersection.

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SW Roxbury Safety Project meeting, the sequel: What was asked last night http://westseattleblog.com/2014/08/sw-roxbury-safety-project-meeting-the-sequel-what-was-asked-last-night/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/08/sw-roxbury-safety-project-meeting-the-sequel-what-was-asked-last-night/#comments Tue, 05 Aug 2014 23:51:57 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=281532 By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

The proposal for rechannelization – aka “road diet” – for Southwest Roxbury’s westernmost arterial mile was no longer a surprise when it was explained last night for the second time in five nights. At least some of the ~30 people at the second meeting about the design proposals for SDOT’s SW Roxbury Safety Project had clearly checked out news of the plan that circulated after the first meeting last Thursday.

Road diets have their critics, but this proposal did not draw an angry crowd to last night’s meeting at the Greenbridge YWCA in White Center, led by SDOT’s Jim Curtin, who also presented last Thursday’s briefing. One person voiced open concern about possible traffic congestion as a result. Several others, though, asked why the rechannelization couldn’t cover the entire arterial stretch of Roxbury, all the way east to Olson. And the general mood of questions/comments was in favor of something even more restrictive than SDOT is suggesting.

But before we get to that: In case you missed it, rechannelization – one lane each way, with a center two-way turn lane, west from 17th to 35th – is part of what SDOT is proposing. We detailed the entire plan in our coverage of last week’s meeting – please read that for full details; we went to last night’s meeting mostly to check out the questions/comments the second time around – it was scheduled as a rerun rather than a followup. Here’s the SDOT slide deck, same thing last night that was shown last Thursday:

Again, the reason why a safety project is on the table: 223 collisions in last ~3 years, with 112 injuries. That’s about double the injury rate for collisions citywide, said SDOT’s Jim Curtin, who led this presentation/discussion as he had done in West Seattle last Thursday. “These are not just minor fender-benders.”

Along Roxbury, SDOT operates the signals and “we maintain the road curb-to-curb,” Curtin clarified in response to a question, even though for most of the stretch, the city-county line goes “right down the middle of Roxbury” until 30th – west of there, “it’s all city,” he noted.

With this meeting held off the east side of the corridor, there was some extra attention on the proposals for that side. Curtin pointed out that the Roxbury/Olson/4th area has had five spinout crashes. “Curve warning and advisory speed-limit signs” went in earlier this year, and none of those crashes have happened since. There will be “left turn yield on green” signage. Roxbury repaving 24th-27th will start right after the curb-ramp work that’s under way on that stretch now is complete. Left-turn pockets are also planned for 26th/Roxbury – there might be left-turn signals too, not yet determined.

Could the school-zone speed cams on the way to Holy Family and Roxhill Elementary zones be used outside school hours? State law would have to be changed, Curtin replied.

He reiterated that the work would start on the western segment – with rechannelization proposed just west of White Center, which would have “a massively incredible effect on speeds,” Curtin said. He reiterated that streets with 25,000 vehicles on weekdays, or fewer, are candidates – and this segment carries 13,000 to 16,000 a day, making it an “ideal” candidate. There will be a bus lane through Roxhill’s area because its bus-load area is on Roxbury. There might be a RapidRide layover zone there, to get rid of the “wall of buses” on Barton. No curb bulbs or median planned, Curtin said, reassuring someone who said those types of features were causing trouble at spots in West Seattle.

Asked about bicycle facilities, Curtin mentioned what he had at last week’s meeting – that Roxbury in the rechannelization zone will have a five-foot buffer on each side but the pavement is too rough right now for a bike lane, so that needs to be fixed before a bike lane could be considered. A future protected bike lane is part of the Bicycle Master Plan, Curtin confirmed. (By the way, he drives Roxbury east of 35th every day, he said.)

36 streets around Seattle have been rechannelized to date, in recent decades. Asked why it couldn’t go along the entire stretch, he said SDOT wished they could, since there’s “less risk when there’s fewer lanes of traffic” – but, “The model kicked out some travel times we considered unacceptable” – a 5-minute end to end trip during peak times could have become 15 minutes.

One person asked if signal changes were planned at 16th/Roxbury/Delridge. They are certainly “possible,” said Curtin, but not necessarily part of the plan right now – “it’s such a complicated intersection already,” he said. What about a walk-all-ways setup there? Curtin said “This intersection COULD get one of those, but certainly not right now.” You would need to have at least 100 pedestrian crossings per hour, he said, and White Center is “on the borderline” of that,

By this point, the meeting went into full Q/A mode. Somebody complained about unmowed planting strips. “The city could take action against them, which I think is pretty rare,” CUrtin said.

A 12th Avenue SW neighbor said she’s excited about the prospective pedestrian signal there, mentioned as a “long-term” project – right now, she just marches right out, puts up her hand to stop traffic, “gives (drivers) the stink-eye” until they stop.

What’s next for the project? Starting today, they’ll talk with local business owners, through October. You can also talk with SDOT at the Delridge Day festival next Saturday (August 9), 11 am-3 pm in Delridge Community Center Park (Delridge/Genesee). While some parts of the project are ongoing, the major elements – once the plan is finalized – will be done next spring/summer.

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From the ‘yes, they’re working on it’ file: 35th SW kickoff date http://westseattleblog.com/2014/08/from-the-yes-theyre-working-on-it-file-35th-sw-kickoff-date/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/08/from-the-yes-theyre-working-on-it-file-35th-sw-kickoff-date/#comments Fri, 01 Aug 2014 18:20:12 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=281279 One more note from last night’s meeting about SW Roxbury – a stack of cards casually announced the launch date for the other major “road-safety corridor project” in the works: 35th SW. You have almost three months’ warning for this one – 6:30 pm October 22nd at Neighborhood House‘s High Point Center. Meantime, browse the background links on the left side of the project page.

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Rechannelization proposed for 1 mile of SW Roxbury, and other safety-improvement proposals unveiled at 1st of 2 meetings http://westseattleblog.com/2014/07/rechannelization-proposed-for-1-mile-of-sw-roxbury-and-other-safety-improvement-proposals-unveiled-at-design-review-meeting-tonight/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/07/rechannelization-proposed-for-1-mile-of-sw-roxbury-and-other-safety-improvement-proposals-unveiled-at-design-review-meeting-tonight/#comments Fri, 01 Aug 2014 02:32:21 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=281196

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

Rechannelization (aka a “road diet”) for the mile of SW Roxbury between 17th and 35th SW (map) is a big part of what SDOT is proposing to do, to fix what it acknowledges are “horrible” conditions for everyone from drivers to pedestrians:

Other proposals and plans for the road, between Olson and 35th, have just been revealed too – a mix of paving, painting, signage, and signals.

It was all unveiled by SDOT’s neighborhood traffic liaison Jim Curtin (who also happens to live in the area) in a meeting tonight at Southwest Library, with more than 20 neighbors in attendance, including leaders of neighborhood groups that campaigned for the city to finally get something done. (See the full slide deck here.)

As Curtin prefaced, SW Roxbury from Olson to 35th is a very busy road, a “principal arterial,” with 13,000 cars a day on average at 35th, almost twice that (25,000) at Olson Place SW. Speed studies show that most drivers are going at least five mph over the speed limit, Curtin said, adding that alongside Roxhill Elementary, 85 percent of vehicles are going more than 11 mph over the 30 mph limit, and, as he pointed out, speed is the number one factor in crashes – of which there have been 223 in the past three years, with 112 people hurt. The eastern section is more crash-prone than the western section. 11 crashes involved vehicles and pedestrians; two involved vehicles and bicycles.

Long-term proposals unveiled, under design right now into early 2015, with the “final determination” to be made before year’s end, and work to be done next year:

They’ll look at the corridor in three sections, he said, western, then White Center, then eastern. For the western segment, the most dramatic proposal:

*Rechannelization between 17th SW and 35th SW, one lane each way, middle lane for turns, shared bus lane with a potential new bus-layover zone near Roxhill Elementary, signage improvements, spot pavement repairs, but no “bike facilities” yet. He says that stats show that rechannelization works well on streets carrying fewer than 25,000 vehicles per day – and as noted above, that defines this stretch (16,000 at the most along the rechannelization-proposed segment). As if on cue, an attendee said, “This is the same thing that was successful on Fauntleroy, right?” and Curtin had a slide ready for that:

It showed 31 percent fewer collisions on Fauntleroy Way after that change five years ago, while it carries a bit more than the 17,600 vehicles a day that it did before the rechannelization. Travel times are unchanged, from four more seconds to 1.2 minutes; “top-end speeders” are down 13 percent.

Curtin says this will make for a better pedestrian situation, eliminates the “multiple threat” collision danger, so more crosswalks might result. Right and left turns will be safer too, he says. He also points out a five-foot buffer planned for each side of the road – and acknowledges that could be the future bike-lane space, after a question from an attendee.

Why can’t this stretch through the White Center area at 15th-17th? he was asked. Travel times there would go up “to unacceptable levels,” Curtin says they found out, through an analysis. But they do plan pavement repair between 17th and 18th, plus “new curb ramps and accessible pedestrian signals at 17th,” as well as signage improvements (like the ones now up at Fauntleroy/California, warning that turning vehicles need to stop for pedestrians and bicycles). “We’re going to go out there and take care of business,” Curtin declared. And yes, he told an attendee who asked, they are in communication with the county (SDOT is actually responsible for Roxbury up until the curb on the county side of the road, even though the boundary technically goes through the middle). A “crosswalk design” might be possible at that spot, Curtin suggests – not part of the formal plan but “if anyone’s interested in talking about it … we can partner up and make it happen.”

The parking alongside Roxbury right by downtown White Center will not be affected by this – business owners “fought really hard to keep it,” Curtin notes. In addition, the parking has NOT been a factor in any crashes, he said.

Now, for the eastern section of Roxbury:

*”Engineering education” is what they want to use to address the main problem, speeding, with two radar speed signs that will likely be in by year’s end, plus “channelization improvements” at Olson/4th – the latter, “to address some of the sideswipe issues.” That will include some “subtle tweaks” to the paint on the roadway to address that.

*To address concerns about a long stretch with no pedestrian crossing, they would seek, “long term,” a signal at 12th SW, in the “neighborhood pond transit stop” area, said Curtin. Grant money would likely help with this, he explained.

But that’s not all the city’s proposing, and not all it’s been doing. Some work’s already been done. But first, the new short-term projects announced by Curtin:

Work is beginning now to pave Roxbury between 24th and 27th; left-turn pockets will be installed at 26th, for both north and south approaches; and grant-funded sidewalks are in the works between 28th and 30th SW – that’s just been announced, Curtin said. If more grant money comes in, they will head south on the east side of 30th, he said.

And he listed the “short-term projects” (as in, completed now or completed soon) that are already in place:

The school-zone speed-enforcement cameras at Roxhill Elementary and Holy Family School will start issuing warnings September 2nd, the first day of school, continuing for a month – if you’re caught speeding, you will get that warning in the mail. “You’re not going to get a ticket for going 22 mph in a 20 mph zone,” said Curtin, “but if you go much faster, you’re asking for it.” They’ve also put up curve warnings and advisory speed-limit signs at the Roxbury/Olson curve, and signs will be put up soon warning that “left turn yield(s) on (green light)” at Roxbury/Olson/4th. (Curtin said that since the signs have gone up in that spot – the most crash-prone intersection in West Seattle – nothing major has happened.)

Meantime, other stats Curtin listed about Roxbury:

*153 parcels abut Roxbury
*more than half are single-family homes
*almost a fifth are retail, office, industrial
*3 schools, parks, open space
*Westwood/White Center urban village in the heart of the area
*Served by 10 transit routes, including West Seattle’s most-popular route, 120

As Curtin recapped, the speed/collision problems on Roxbury were an impetus for this, as well as Safe Routes to School funding availability, and local community councils’ request for help – Westwood Roxhill Arbor Heights, Highland Park Action Committee, and North Highline Unincorporated Area Council.

This was preceded by meetings back in February (WSB coverage here), as well as other “outreach” events that Curtin also recapped, including the White Center Summit, WC Chamber of Commerce, and more, including a WC Community Development Association outreach project making contact, he said, with more than 200 households for whom English is not the primary language.

In addition to the second “design review” meeting next Monday in Greenbridge (6 pm at the YWCA, 9720 8th SW), you’ll also be able to check out the proposed designs at Delridge Day on August 9th (11 am-3 pm at Delridge Community Center park). And if you’re in the area, look for information in the mail.

OTHER ‘NEXT STEPS’: SDOT is talking to businesses August through October, planning a “final” determination and community meeting late this fall, and then would do the work in spring-summer next year.

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One more nudge: 1st look at Roxbury possibilities Thursday night http://westseattleblog.com/2014/07/one-more-nudge-1st-look-at-roxbury-possibilities-tomorrow-night/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/07/one-more-nudge-1st-look-at-roxbury-possibilities-tomorrow-night/#comments Thu, 31 Jul 2014 04:47:16 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=281074 It’s the road with two of West Seattle’s three most-crash-plagued intersections – and after two neighborhood councils said, “Enough!”, the city committed to making changes on SW Roxbury. As announced a week and a half ago, tomorrow’s the night you can get the first look, and offer some first comments, at the first round of possibilities. 6 pm, Southwest Library (35th/Henderson), upstairs meeting room – early enough you can still get out in time for a sunset walk/ride/drive.

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West Seattle’s first bike corral now in place in The Junction http://westseattleblog.com/2014/07/west-seattles-first-bike-corral-now-in-place-in-the-junction/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/07/west-seattles-first-bike-corral-now-in-place-in-the-junction/#comments Wed, 30 Jul 2014 22:50:34 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=281037

West Seattle’s first city-installed bike corral is in place today in The Junction, one month after this open letter expressing concern that the city and the adjacent developer were delaying a project that had been in the works for more than a year. Less than two weeks after that letter, SDOT and West Seattle Bike Connections announced a breakthrough would lead to the long-awaited on-street bicycle-parking zone being installed by month’s end – and today, it’s done. It’s on the east side of California just south of Alaska, in a spot that was already off-limits to vehicle parking.

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17 questions from Councilmember Rasmussen for new SDOT boss Scott Kubly; anything missing? http://westseattleblog.com/2014/07/17-questions-from-councilmember-rasmussen-for-new-sdot-boss-scott-kubly-anything-missing/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/07/17-questions-from-councilmember-rasmussen-for-new-sdot-boss-scott-kubly-anything-missing/#comments Fri, 25 Jul 2014 22:11:42 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=280501 A short time ago, Scott Kubly, Mayor Murray’s choice for SDOT director, tweeted that he’s arrived:

Next month, he faces confirmation hearings before the City Council. The chair of its Transportation Committee, West Seattle-residing Councilmember Tom Rasmussen, shared with us the questions he wants Kubly to answer. See them here. You’ll note that they include a request for Kubly to review the June 10th five-hour, four-mile Highway 99 crash-investigation-related closure (here’s our most-recent followup) and whether policies should be changed as a result. But that’s just one of 17 questions Rasmussen has asked Kubly to answer by August 5th, in advance of his August 12th hearing. Anything you think he’s missing?

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