2 new crosswalks confirmed for Delridge Way by Boren Building

(WSB photo from fall 2014: Looking south down 5900 block Delridge Way)
Big news tonight for the parents and staffers who have been pushing for safety improvements on Delridge Way at the Boren Building, permanent home of K-5 (soon K-8) STEM and temporary home of Arbor Heights Elementary: The city Department of Transportation has finally officially confirmed that two crosswalks will be built.

The STEM community got unofficial word more than a month ago, and we’ve been seeking SDOT confirmation ever since; the city, however, had to finalize some details, and finally this evening, senior transportation planner Brian Dougherty had an official announcement to share, not just in response to our most recent inquiry but also with those in the school community who had worked so hard to make it happen:

SDOT will be installing two new marked crosswalks near the Boren building for Arbor Heights and K-5 STEM. One crosswalk will be provided near the front door of the school, connecting the school to the Longfellow Creek Trail. Another crosswalk will be provided at 24th Avenue SW, connecting the school to Metro bus stops and High Point via the Graham Street stairs.

Both projects are tentatively scheduled to be constructed this year with funding provided through a combination of Safe Routes to School and Neighborhood Park and Street Fund.

The crosswalk to the front entrance was requested in a community proposal for use of the NPSF, as reported here last year, when we also covered the Seattle School Traffic Safety Committee convening at STEM and hearing firsthand about the safety challenges that school was facing, even before another full elementary-school population joined them, if only for two years.

In case you’re wondering, Dougherty’s note to school reps mentions one more thing: “Both crosswalks will have some form of push-button-activated stop light or warning light.”

17 Replies to "2 new crosswalks confirmed for Delridge Way by Boren Building"

  • Don Brubeck January 6, 2015 (9:08 pm)

    That is great news. it’s way too far to the next intersection with a signal on this high traffic street. Special thanks to Craig Rankin for pushing for this for the kids and parents at Boren School.

  • Mama4 January 6, 2015 (9:24 pm)

    This is by far the very best option for the school and Delridge community. Thanks STEM families & community advocates who sat through meetings, wrote letters, and supported a safe crossing for everyone.

  • AmandaKH January 6, 2015 (10:14 pm)

    Fantastic news! Echo Don’s thanks to Craig Rankin and all STEM families for their ever forward march for safety for STEM.

  • dsa January 6, 2015 (11:00 pm)

    Congratulations, push buttons are the way to go.

  • Mel January 7, 2015 (12:17 am)

    isnt there a signaled intersection with a crosswalk very near the main school building? Or would that put kids too close to the DESC building? Are we down to spending public money to build around that?
    As for the connection to Longfellow Creek, is that where we want very young children going? Or once again is that a tradeoff to keep kids from wandering north?

    • WSB January 7, 2015 (12:32 am)

      The currently signalized intersection is at Delridge/Juneau on the north end of the building, which is Arbor Heights’ side. It is a very long, narrow campus, counting the playfield/parking lot stretch to the south, though I believe if a choice would’ve had to have been made, the far-south crosswalk is the lower priority – if I am recalling correctly, at one point in the process it looked as if the city might only install the far-south crosswalk, but the midblock one to the main entrance is what was most passionately sought. As for DESC, no one from the campus is likely to “wander” anywhere near it, as even the far north end of the Boren building is one and a half very long blocks away. Re: Longfellow Creek, I suspect that’s an educational exploration point, but someone from STEM certainly can speak to that.

  • sophista-tiki January 7, 2015 (5:44 am)


  • Nancy Folsom January 7, 2015 (6:28 am)

    Great news. And speaks to the value of patient persistence. Let’s all remember, though, that every intersection is a crosswalk. So cars should already be stopping for pedestrians at Graham. I was stopped for a pedestrian yesterday when a car speed by on the right, in a bus lane. Luckily the pedestrian hasn’t got that far yet. We’ve got to get back in the habit of looking for pedestrians at intersections and STOP.

  • w.s.maverick January 7, 2015 (7:52 am)

    thats good news maybe they can fix all the pot holes on del ridge too. everyone swerves to miss the pot holes

    • WSB January 7, 2015 (8:00 am)

      If you’ve seen an unrepaired pothole, please report it to 206-684-ROAD (or via the city’s Find It Fix It app). The city map http://web6.seattle.gov/sdot/potholemap/ shows two pending on Delridge – if you know of others, they apparently don’t, so call them in.

  • John January 7, 2015 (8:34 am)

    Way to go Craig!
    All of those traffic counts added up.

  • T January 7, 2015 (10:43 am)

    The STEM classes go on science-related field trips all the time to Longfellow Creek. So, I’m sure that’s why a safer connection to the creek was needed.

  • Lindsey January 7, 2015 (12:29 pm)

    That’s awesome! Hopefully people will get off their phones and pay attention for these little pedestrians. I fear for my life and limbs every time I cross Delridge and count the motorists on their phones. It’s usually one in four!

  • mama4 January 7, 2015 (1:47 pm)

    Mel – let me see if I can address your questions / comments.

    “Isn’t there a signaled intersection with a crosswalk very near the main school building? Or would that put kids too close to the DESC building? Are we down to spending public money to build around that?”

    The DESC building crosswalk is at least a football field length away from the very North end of Boren. There is a marked (unlighted) crosswalk by the DESC building and a crosswalk at the road (by Pho Aroma). There are NO signaled crosswalks by the main and south entrances of Boren (only on the very North end at Delridge & Juneau) ) a full block away from the South side where students and parents enter.

    “As for the connection to Longfellow Creek, is that where we want very young children going? Or once again is that a tradeoff to keep kids from wandering north?”

    The two crosswalks are for the Graham (very South side of the parking lot) and for right across the street from the South side (and designated entrance) – FYI – the doors off Delridge are kept locked on the outside and the community should only by coming in the South side doors where the office(s) are located for safety.

    Many in the community wanted a crosswalk at Graham, to attach the bus stop to high point and as a point of fact there are many mid block crossings at that spot. Also, it’s a natural break since Graham is right there.

    The STEM community wanted a Graham crosswalk BUT ALSO wanted a crosswalk that our community would use out the South main entrance. Less about kids walking to Longfellow creek, more about parents playing frogger to get kids in and out of school from cars parked on the West side of Delridge. It will help reduce the risk of parents and guardians crossing Delridge – kids will NEVER be out there without staff or parents. We advocated for this crosswalk because we felt the community would not park, walk a football field south, cross at Graham, walk the entire parking lot back – adding a crosswalk mid block on the South side of Boren where a majority of parents cross for parking made the most sense for our families safety.

    I’ll loop back around if anyone has any other questions – let me know.

    – Robin (STEM parent & I worked on this deal-e-o). :)

  • Craig January 7, 2015 (6:19 pm)

    This is great news and couldn’t have happened without a lot of time spent by a core group of dedicated parents at K-5 Stem. Kathleen Voss was pushing for these changes at the genesis of K-5 STEM and continued to supply needed pressure on SDOT and SPS to address safety concerns. Rachael Wright worked tirelessly with Feet First to gather data to both formulate and support these upgrades. And through it all Robin Graham has provided diligent leadership around these matters.

    The Delridge District Council was instrumental in this process having pushed back SDOT’s inadequate version of the NPSF proposal.

    Thanks to SDOT’s Scott Kulby for revisiting the site and especially to SDOT’s Brian Dougherty for his role in developing the Graham Crossing and for helping us put the 2014 NPSF grant proposal together.


  • Trudy Skilton January 7, 2015 (9:50 pm)

    Nancy-That is scary. That is how we lost Marcus Anderson, a young boy in the neighborhood who has a memorial sign up on Delridge. Thank you for sharing.

  • AH Parent January 7, 2015 (10:21 pm)

    Arbor Heights uses Longfellow for science as well!

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