Make history – be there as West Seattle Transit Coalition launches

(WSB photo from October 2012, 35th SW south of Avalon)
The date’s now set for the launch meeting of the new West Seattle Transit Coalition (mentioned in WSB coverage of this week’s Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Community Council meeting) – and you’re invited – 6:30 pm September 24th at Neighborhood House’s High Point Center. If you’re concerned about the state of transportation in/to/from West Seattle, don’t miss it. From the official announcement:

Following discussions over several months, a multitude of West Seattle groups have made the decision to attempt to form a West Seattle Transit Coalition. There are at least three factors currently working in tandem to significantly worry a lot of people in West Seattle, that we have been talking about on and off for months in our meetings.

*The looming reduction of mass transit services regionwide with the King County Metro funding crisis coming out of Olympia. All services will face up to a 17% cut in volume.

*This is only compounded for us in West Seattle, with the equally looming end of the SR-99 Viaduct and the construction headaches that will cause for all of us soon.

*Third, the population because of increasing density (whether you’re a fan or not) in West Seattle is increasing, further straining transit — transit which may soon reduce, straining it even further.

Individually, any one of these things is a topic deep enough for a three hour meeting, or more. Put together? Again, regardless of what side you’re on about any of these issues, altogether they equal out to everyone coming out of West Seattle having a pretty awful commute very soon.

If for some reason your group is unable to attend or send representatives, this will be not a closed, finite thing. For example, several ideas for draft letters and statements are floating around under discussion. These will be reviewed and possibly finalized–with the upcoming elections, ballots will go out in the beginning of October. This makes the entire thing time-sensitive, but people will be still able to endorse if desired later. This is all very sudden, and a bit of an emergency, with so many things spinning together at once.

Read the rest of the announcement – including a plan to get elected officials and candidates on the record with where they stand – by going here. And be there September 24th to show your support; High Point Center is at 6400 Sylvan Way SW.

14 Replies to "Make history - be there as West Seattle Transit Coalition launches"

  • i'mcoveredinbees September 12, 2013 (4:10 pm)

    Most pressing issue here, aside from crime, as far as I’m concerned. Good step!

  • West Seattle Hipster September 12, 2013 (5:09 pm)

    Since Metro has not demonstrated that they can spend our tax dollars and subsidies wisely, I would love to see more of a focus on bringing light rail to West Seattle.

    Carelessly donating money to Metro has not and will not improve transit. Time to look for solutions elsewhere.

  • Bus_rider September 12, 2013 (5:27 pm)

    Time to have one comprehensive transit agency servicing the larger metropolitan area based on data not politics. And for the record, it is already bad commuting from West Seattle. One accident on or near bridge that requires traffic investigation shuts down our neighborhood for hours.

  • transplantella September 12, 2013 (5:38 pm)

    For those interested in all things in Seattle public transit, there is already a great watchdog website that reports on transit everything and has a very well populated audience of public comments.


    Seattle Transit Blog

    • WSB September 12, 2013 (5:46 pm)

      T – Certainly STB is an excellent specialty-focus site. It’s not an advocacy organization, and that’s what folks here are forming, addressing the very specific concerns and conditions of West Seattle, the city’s largest neighborhood, and the only one that all but requires crossing a bridge to get somewhere (Ballard and Magnolia have bridges but there are easy ways out without using them). I would imagine that WWRHAH is contacting STB to help get the word out about this too, and cover it if they so choose.
      P.S. To WS Hipster – in case you missed this one back in June, when the mayor came over here for a sort of West Seattle-specific media briefing on transit (we asked him a variety of questions, including the one that came up in the development discussion at WWRHAH, charging developers for transit impact):

      – TR

  • M September 12, 2013 (9:42 pm)

    I want to see this succeed, but I have to admit trepidation about participating myself after having made attempts to participate in public transit community meetings in the past only to feel like those groups were stymied by the bureaucrats in attendance (especially those from SDOT). It was as if the those community meetings were simply some bare minimum requirement they had to partake in.

  • Al September 13, 2013 (12:06 am)

    Can someone stream this meeting for remote viewers/attendees?

    • WSB September 13, 2013 (1:11 am)

      We will certainly record the whole thing on video, as we do with many key meetings/events. Live, not so sure but can look into it.

  • T September 13, 2013 (5:44 am)

    You got me there. About time something like this was started.

  • Amanda September 13, 2013 (9:27 am)

    Hi M. I can understand your trepidation. Please rest assured that this meeting is for concerned citizens to talk about positive, rational, and logical solutions to very real problems. And find a way to present those solutions in a way that cannot be ignored. We have not invited Officials from any agency – if they want to come as concerned citizens and participate that way, we welcome them. A large task? Absolutely. An impossible one? Not by a long shot :)

  • anonyme September 14, 2013 (6:43 am)

    M makes some good points. Metro (and SDOT) consistently ignore recommendations from citizen groups and advisory boards. Those of us relying on public transit have suffered as a result. Don’t get me wrong, I think this board is a good idea, but it will need some muscle – including publicity.

    I would add to the issues stated above the problem of trains. The other morning during rush hour I sat on a #21 for 30 minutes while a mile-long train began to pass, then STOPPED on the tracks for almost 25 minutes. We need tunnels under the tracks, not under the waterfront.

  • Mickey September 18, 2013 (9:01 am)

    I hope this group will be actively advocating for funding for Metro in the special session!

  • cascadianone September 19, 2013 (7:23 am)

    I’m really hoping you guys work in conjunction with the Seattle Subway folks! West Seattle desperately needs a grade-separated (underground or elevated) light rail line to downtown. If that line continued out to Ballard, I think we’d be serving enough folks to really get the support we need! Thanks.

  • Joe Szilagyi September 19, 2013 (10:36 am)

    Mickey — that’s one of the main agenda items (agenda is nearly done). Cascadianone — everything is on the table. The group(s) as a whole will decide, and things being things I would be personally shocked if it wasn’t some sort of balanced approach. Like any neighborhood we’ve got everything from people wanting all but our own buried West Seattle train tunnel with bike lanes over them going through 100 foot mixed use high rises to the most ardent “NIMBY” types who want West Seattle to stay how it is circa <1999. We're all across all levels of that spectrum, to some degree. No one is more right or more wrong than anyone else; some views are just more on the edge of plausible than others, 'today'. Any solutions, I wager, would have to be balanced because of that (and because of political and cost realities!).
    We'll start to decide on Tuesday, it looks like.

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