Tell the city what you want to see in Seattle in the next 20 years

When the city sent around a survey link, explaining it was about the “Comprehensive Plan,” we wondered if anyone would really take a survey about something so generic-sounding, as important as it is. But the fine city folks working to drum up participation for the survey explain that it boils down to nothing less than “what do you want to see in Seattle in the next 20 years?” And they share a few of the suggestions West Seattle participants have offered so far:

*Walkable. When neighborhoods are walkable: people recognize their neighbors, can get to services – even when weather shuts down the City, cars stay home and pollute less, household finances are improved with lower transportation costs, local businesses thrive because they are neighbors and tax dollars stay in the City, life is simpler.

*For neighborhoods and businesses to be more diverse voluntarily, and have more/better housing choices for all citizens. Work on ways to create jobs even if they are just entry level. Assist those getting off of welfare and out of prisons with real job skills so they won’t have to go back to welfare or jail, but will be able to support themselves and exist and contribute in society.

*Install a sea organ along the waterfront.

(We had to look that last one up.) Fewer than 1,000 people citywide have taken the survey so far – so take a few minutes and voice your ideas now! The survey is here.

25 Replies to "Tell the city what you want to see in Seattle in the next 20 years"

  • Mander August 19, 2011 (7:36 am)

    I said monorail. :)

  • 56bricks August 19, 2011 (8:00 am)

    Like they’re gonna listen.

  • westseattleperson August 19, 2011 (8:01 am)

    As did I. Non-bus public transportation is the only change I can think of that would REALLY make an impact in Seattle in the next 20+ years

  • Jiggers August 19, 2011 (8:02 am)

    Telling is one thing, actually doing it is another thing. I also wanted the monorail, plus more stripclubs. Within a month or so, the traffic is going do get down right ugly. If you ride Metro into downtown for work or anywhere for the matter, expect to be late more than half the time. The buses to West Seattle are already running late, very late on a daily basis. The tunnel project is worthless!

  • Aman August 19, 2011 (8:14 am)

    I wonder if anyone requested a viaduct?

  • JoAnne August 19, 2011 (9:04 am)

    This is just more of the same nonsense from the city. They have these phoney listening sessions and then ignore what people want and do social engineering on them or do whatever they want. They think they “know better” and could not care less what people want.

    People do not even vote anymore. They say it’s pointless. The “big dig” passed this week with less than 25% of the registered vote.

    • WSB August 19, 2011 (9:22 am)

      Pet peeve, so forgive me the soapbox: If people really regard voting as pointless, they have made it so by their own inaction. Nobody stopped the other 75 percent (or whatever) of the people from voting, but themselves – not to mention the tens of thousands who haven’t even registered. Much as I personally don’t like by-mail voting, it’s made it even easier, technically. If there really are tens of thousands of more people who opposed the tunnel but didn’t vote, then they have nobody to blame for the result but themselves. I understand cynicism, as it tends to accompany the career choice of journalism – well, skepticism more than cynicism, but still – but I don’t think there’s any excuse for not voting, unless the excuse is that you truly can’t because you’re an ex-felon or non-citizen, etc. I registered the second I turned 18, proudly voted in some low-level special election in Las Vegas, where I lived at the time, sewer district or something like that, and have missed maybe 1 election in the entire 33 years since. The more politicians think nobody will even bother to vote, the more they’ll just roll on. Elections even really do get decided by one vote sometimes. That one might be yours. – TR

  • theydon'tcare August 19, 2011 (9:08 am)

    Slow down Thistle so I can talk to my neighbors across the street! We try and then a big a– bus comes by, or an 18-wheeler, or a car speeding at 60…

    That and light rail all over the city so we can easily visit downtown and other areas. I know what they are driving at though just from watching that press conference at Delridge the other day. Bike Master Plan etc., etc., etc.

  • marty August 19, 2011 (9:30 am)

    Lower taxes!

  • Momof3 August 19, 2011 (10:17 am)

    Classrooms with less than 25 kids, stronger public transportation, less rain, sunny skies and a direct link to someplace better than here.

  • Jiggers August 19, 2011 (10:18 am)

    WSB..I’ve always said if you don’t vote, don’t complain!

  • Peter on Fauntleroy August 19, 2011 (10:55 am)

    Well said TR! I’m proud I haven’t missed one election since turning 18 almost 22 years ago. And it’s not just voting: I often write/call public officials with my opinions, and that matters just as much (e.g. the overwhelmingly ‘pro’ feedback the county council got regarding the $20 fee to preserve metro service). It’s frustrating to hear so many people gripe about how it doesn’t matter what they think when they’ve chosen not to participate in civic society.

  • Peter on Fauntleroy August 19, 2011 (11:11 am)

    People should also be mature enough to realize that giving input does not mean one gets one’s way. Public officials have a lot of elements to consider, whereas we each as individuals have a more narrow interest. Just because things don’t go the way an individual thinks they should is not grounds to claim they’re not listening.

  • Tuesday August 19, 2011 (11:42 am)

    Wow. What an insulting survey. Pretty much it was “this is the direction we’re taking the city” tell us how vastly important this is. If they actually wanted input, they’d have a survey designed to gather real public opinion, not just one interested in confirming their own perspectives.

    I’m new to the area, but it’s already very clear that we need city council candidates with diverse perspectives. Almost every single legit candidate on the ballot was some variation of liberal to super liberal. Is there no room for any other perspective!?

  • NFiorentini August 19, 2011 (12:17 pm)

    I started to take this survey, but the survey never asks about law enforcement. The two most important things that city government can do, in my opinion, is to provide quality law enforcement and to make getting around town-transportation issues-as easy as possible.

    I’m normally for lower taxes, but I would support a tax increase that would *substantially* increase the number of officers in Seattle and give them a pay raise. Hopefully, that plan would involve the combination of a tax increase AND a drastic increase in the fines on moving violations. Driving like a moron here is too cheap!

    There currently are about 2.16 SPD officer per 1,000 Seattlites; I’d like to see the ratio closer to 4 officers per 1,000, along with a permanent presence on Alki.

    Regarding transportation, we don’t need more bicycle lanes going unused from November to May. We need the roads that we have maintained; of any major city that I have lived in, Seattle roads are by far the worst. We need to make getting around by car easier and to cease this silly, passive-aggressive BS idea in which traffic and congestion is supposed to make car drivers change their evil ways. It’s dumb. Stop it.

    At the same time, increase the number of bus routes so that it is a real alternative for more people. Metro should make an effort to find out where their customers are going and to tailor routes to reduce changeovers. For instance, people hopping on the 56 at 6am…are they going to a First Hill hospital for a 7am shift change? If so, then give them a route that goes to First Hill and not up 3rd Ave where they have to catch another bus and the trip can take more than an hour. Also, I have had to wait 45 minutes from downtown to catch my bus back home on Thursday nights and weekends; that’s not going to keep me out of my car.

    There are probably cuts to be made to fund some of this, but probably not enough. If any of my city political critters wants to raise my taxes for these things, I’m in!

  • wetone August 19, 2011 (1:04 pm)

    If you own property in West Seattle you better sell now. Because it’s tuff to sell when it’s landlocked. Can’t get to work or a hospital what do you do ?????????? Thank the city for allowing more building !!!!!!!!!!!!

  • higgins August 19, 2011 (1:18 pm)

    One of my biggest issues with Seattle is there are too many cars and not enough space to park them. But being a small-town girl originally, I suspect that maybe my problem is not with Seattle but with cities in general. I’m not sure if this would even make a difference and the city would likely catch hell over it, but I’d like to see fees for having more than two cars per family, and maybe a fee for having an unnecessarily large vehicle. If you own an F250 Super Duty just cause you like the way the diesel sounds, maybe you could pay a bit extra for the privilege of tearing up the roads and taking up more space? Thoughts, anybody? Perhaps I’m way off base… Of course, the alternative to having to put restrictions on how many and what kind of cars people can own is to provide fabulous public transportation so people don’t need cars in the first place. So that’s what I want to see in the next 20 years. Fewer cars on the streets.

  • Tuesday August 19, 2011 (2:17 pm)

    The danger in that idea is we then allow government to determine whether someone has an unnecessarily large vehicle. There is no definition that will be fair to all. Why should your preference for a parking spot be more important than another person’s preference to drive a larger, safer vehicle? Driving whatever vehicle you want is a wonderful freedom. I don’t think anyone would want to be told what they can or cannot drive. And why should two car families be punished? What if it allows both people to work off the bus system? And if the government does go down this path that they often do, why should they stop with vehicle size or numbers? Why not tax people for not eating enough vegetables or not taking the bus twice a week? From that perspective, the government could also go so far as to tell people where to live so they could walk to work. It’s a very slippery slope. If you want more open parking spots, the solution isn’t fewer or smaller cars, the solution is higher prices for high demand parking spots.

  • Kate K August 19, 2011 (2:23 pm)

    Done. Took 10 minutes.

  • Wes C. Addle August 19, 2011 (2:23 pm)

    Less Real Change vendors!

  • JoAnne August 19, 2011 (5:23 pm)

    I agree with you WSB. Voting is a civic responsibility, and really, so is staying informed. I understand feeling “run over” by politicians no matter how one votes.

    However, opting out of the entire system is a terrible mistake.

    It is appalling that our future is being decided by less than 25% of registered voters, and as you pointed out, not everyone is registered.

    Thus if 65% of the population is registered to vote, and only 25% of them actually voted, then only a little over 16% of us are making decisions that affect the other 84%. Not exactly democracy in action.

  • East Coast Cynic August 19, 2011 (5:56 pm)

    Right of Way public transportation and a much more diverse employment base–our economy is a two trick pony–IT and Aerospace. Not everybody can become an software engineer. Create a more fertile ground for the growth of finance, manufacturing and alternative energy.

  • JN August 19, 2011 (11:29 pm)

    More bike lanes and less freeways for cars. We need to continue making it difficult to get around by car, BUT first we need to provide good alternatives, i.e. light rail, trolleys, bike lanes, etc. with right of way. A properly planned public infrastructure works infinitely better than using 2 tons of metal and rubber to drive one 170 pound person around.

  • redblack August 20, 2011 (11:04 am)

    tuesday: the larger, safer vehicle is harder on the roads. i think the determination for “excessive” should be based on curb weight, since street repairs are the city’s responsibility.

  • Cbo August 20, 2011 (7:13 pm)


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