‘STAY HEALTHY STREETS’: Mayor announces first 20 miles will be permanent; also, expanding this weekend to include north end of Beach Drive

(WSB photo, 21st SW at 22nd SW on Puget Ridge, earlier this week)

4:21 PM: In a media briefing we covered earlier this afternoon, Mayor Jenny Durkan announced the first 20 miles of closed-to-through-traffic “Stay Healthy Streets” – announced as an experiment to give more people room to “socially distance” while walking, bicycling, etc. – will be permanent. That includes the first two stretches in West Seattle – one in High Point, another in Puget Ridge/Highland Park. She said it’s part of “rebuild(ing) a better Seattle,” in hopes vehicle-traffic and pollution reductions will continue post-pandemic. (We asked about the HPAC request to drop SW Trenton from the Highland Park stretch; SDOT director Sam Zimbabwe said they’re still evaluating that.) Also announced, an SHS expansion this weekend that will include the northernmost stretch of Beach Drive, between Alki Avenue and 63rd SW, alongside Constellation Park. The mayor also announced the city would seek to accelerate projects around the city making it safer to walk and ride – no specific list yet.

4:44 PM: Here’s the official SDOT announcement, which also notes they’ll have a survey out soon.

215 Replies to "'STAY HEALTHY STREETS': Mayor announces first 20 miles will be permanent; also, expanding this weekend to include north end of Beach Drive"

  • Um, No! May 7, 2020 (4:31 pm)

    But I thought these closures were to “stay healthy”?   What happens once this pandemic passes? Is there something inherently “unhealthy” about these streets?  The things we give up or have taken away permanently during times of crisis in the guise or public health or some other convenient cause. Just be up front about your true intentions.  Typical politician.   

    • Michael May 7, 2020 (5:16 pm)

      These are non arterial neighborhood streets. If your destination is on that street you can still drive there. Deliveries can still drive there too. All this does is block through traffic and  make the car feel more unwelcome so the drivers have to drive more cautiously. It also gives back more space for residents to bike, skateboard, scooter, walk, run on in more peace. What are you giving up? The ability to bypass traffic jams through small neighborhood streets? Or to treat on empty neighborhood streets as racetracks? Just be up front with your intentions.

      • KM May 7, 2020 (7:25 pm)

        Michael, I think of this illustration anytime someone mentions the “war on cars.” Thank you for sharing it!

      • Um, No! May 7, 2020 (7:32 pm)

        Up front with my intentions? What? The Sheeple have been duped once again.

        • Wild One May 7, 2020 (8:10 pm)

          Hi Um No,I personally like the the idea. Regardless of my my personal opinion, I think you really have a very valid point about ”The things we give up or have taken away permanently during times of crisis in the guise or public health or some other convenient cause.”This is a very important perspective especially in these times. But when you start referring to others as “sheeple” it immediately signals to me and many others I’m sure that you are not coming from a reasonable perspective and it is very easy to dismiss your entire point. Please continue to question authority but realize that people who do not necessarily hold your same viewpoint are “sheeple”. Lol.

          • Um, No! May 7, 2020 (8:47 pm)

            Thank you for your honesty and I would agree.  I don’t usually use that term.   But, when people can’t see or acknowledge the fast one the mayor is pulling over on us,  it’s frustrating.   Personally, I think it’s pretty disgusting of the mayor.   Good idea or not, this was billed originally as something to help people stay healthy by allowing more social distancing.  Give people space. Now, it’s conveniently become permanent even after the pandemic  passes.  And do you think it will stop there? Of course not.  I also think the Beach Drive idea is going to backfire (pun intended?).  So no through traffic but you can still go in a park?  But it’s local traffic only?  Very confusing. I’m guessing it going to create more issues than it solves. Wait until the taxes go up in that area!  But, we’ll see.  In the end, I dislike just politicians and the mayor is just another sleazy example of what this city  has put up with for years. 

          • AW May 8, 2020 (3:43 pm)

            @UmNo What fast one is the mayor trying to pull on us?

        • Peter May 8, 2020 (9:59 am)

          Um, no, your use of the portmanteau “sheeple” proves beyond all doubt that you are a paid right wing Russian troll. Go away. 

          • Um, No! May 8, 2020 (2:35 pm)

            Ha,you got me!  In reality, far far from it.  

      • Jack May 8, 2020 (6:14 am)

        So, I’m a little confused.  Cars can still drive and park on Beach Drive but it will be a Dead End.  Alki Ave from 63rd West will be a Dead End.  Where are they going to turn around?  Get a good number of people visiting the park and you’ll have a log jam parking lot.

      • Cherry May 9, 2020 (4:34 pm)

        I lived at the north end of beach dr for eight years.  We moved a year ago because the constant warm weather hot rods and loud motorcycles drove us out.  But the clinker was the exhaust smell that made it impossible for the residents to enjoy their decks, views and any other outdoor activities that their already high taxes pay for!  Bumper to bumper cars idling on a hot summer day is most unhealthy !!  I’ve heard that it’s even worse now as anger has been added to the mix!  Why do hard working, honest citizens get dumped on when they spend a life time planning ahead so they can kick back and finally enjoy the fruits of their years of labor, most of whom had no help from mommy and daddy! Those of you who complain about what has been taken from you have no idea what you’re saying. Wait until you are in our shoes and see what has been taken from us . Have you ever heard of the American Dream? Grrrrrrrrr

    • Kathy May 7, 2020 (6:05 pm)

      Vision Zero. “Stay Alive Streets”.  Even better than “Stay Healthy”.

  • Dumpling Girl May 7, 2020 (4:47 pm)

    I live on one of the greenways and I’m happy it will be made permanent. It’s been wonderful to see more people out walking, jogging and cycling. Parents have been out teaching their little kids learning how to ride their bikes. Neighbors are interacting more (from a distance). Thanks to the mayor and SDOT! 

    • J May 8, 2020 (8:27 am)

      Must be nice. I live on the street over from a closed street and we’re getting all of the thru traffic since it’s been closed. 

  • Mark Schletty May 7, 2020 (4:51 pm)

    A commenter not long ago accused me of using a slippery slope argument when I said I was worried the these Safe Street closures would become permanent. I guess slippery slope arguments do have some merit. As I mentioned before, closing Constellation Park to cars violates the ADA. It is the best place for my wife and I to get near to the water to enjoy our lunch in our car occasionally.  And it is a Park, by name. I have handicap license plates on my car, and I shall continue to go there for pleasant lunch breaks. If I am tagged for doing so, I will gladly bring an ADA claim against the City.

    • CAM May 7, 2020 (5:27 pm)

      Looking at a map and using the description of the closure above, there are ways to get to Constellation Park without violating the order. I doubt that if you violated it willfully that an ADA claim would get far. If you are driving there in your personal vehicle it’s tough to say that having to go a few blocks out of the way is creating a hardship. 

      • Pelicans May 7, 2020 (11:37 pm)

        Going “a few blocks out of the way” for a disabled person is everything. People should be allowed to park and enjoy the view and eat their lunches. Disabled people are not the “problem” on north Beach Drive.

        • Pelicans May 7, 2020 (11:46 pm)

          Disabled people deserve access to north Beach Drive. Not the assinine dangerous drivers who make it hazardous for anyone on foot to go there. Ban all but residents, pedestrians, the disabled, and delivery.

    • zark00 May 7, 2020 (5:48 pm)

      Please do bring the ADA claim – and even just bring it to their attention period – this is completely ridiculous.  If they want a car-less walking promenade that’s fine, they can build one, and get the appropriate neighborhood feedback before doing it.  Just randomly shutting down a street to cars and calling it ‘healthy’ is complete garbage.  It’s pretty obvious that Seattle cannot maintain it’s roadways, it’s been a struggle for us for at least 30 years. Shutting down 20 miles of roads eliminates the maintenance budget for those roads, and can be counted as a ‘win’ for local politicians.  That’s what’s happening here.  I’m calling shenanigans.

    • BBILL May 7, 2020 (6:01 pm)

      As I mentioned before, closing Constellation Park to cars violates the ADA.” That’s not convincing! Please support your claim that there is an ADA violation.

      • Zark00 May 8, 2020 (9:33 am)

        The ADA has an entire portion dedicated to public parks, public Commons, and accessibility. If a city makes a new area available to the public for outdoor recreation, or make significant changes to an existing area, they can be compelled to conduct an accessibility audit. 

    • KM May 7, 2020 (6:09 pm)

      Mark, this is a fantastic opportunity to ask the city to create some accessible curb parking reserved for disabled users to access the park, and make sure curb cuts exist for the sidewalks where they don’t already. I think both accessibility and open streets go hand in hand, and since they haven’t determined design for these permanent closures, now is the time to contact them and make sure they are designing inclusively.

    • WSJ May 7, 2020 (6:35 pm)

      It’s not “closed to cars”, it’s closed for through-access, you’ll still be able to park, and the city has gone out of its way to ensure ADA access in parks even during closures, so I think your concerns are unwarranted.

    • Ice May 7, 2020 (7:10 pm)

      you literally wrote “Now that I see the bike lobby is pushing to close off Beach Drive I
      realize where the impetus is coming from. Bike lobbyists, not Safe
      Streets for coronavirus-time temporary exercise areas, people. There are
      no alternative roadways to get to the park areas, public water view
      areas, and a wonderful, much love”d restaurant in this area.
      ” This makes it sound like the entirety of Beach Drive SW would be closed.  The portion that has been closed is not required to get to any of these things. You were making an incredibly ridiculous slippery-slope argument, as if they would close the entirety of Beach Drive. On top of that, as other people have pointed out, you’ll still be able to park there. Nothing much will change for you at all.  You are catastrophizing.

    • Don Brubeck May 7, 2020 (7:28 pm)

      Mark Schletty,  At West Seattle Bike Connections’ meeting this week, we discussed your  concerns for people with mobility disabilities.  We agree with you that people who need to drive to public places should have reasonable accommodation. An example is the recently installed ADA parking at Lincoln Park in the otherwise closed lots. We passed this on to SDOT. It seems entirely reasonable that anyone with an ADA parking placard or plates should be able to drive or park on these streets.  There is no active enforcement or gating of the streets, so it should not be a problem, but could be made explicit policy. Our all-volunteer “bike lobby” group spends a lot of it’s energy on pedestrian and accessibility projects to make the streets safe for everyone. We appreciate your perspective.

    • Jana May 10, 2020 (9:14 pm)

      I filed a complaint with the city about the closed streets violating ADA. I suggest you do the same. If they don’t solve it, I will be filing a federal complaint. 

  • WSJoe May 7, 2020 (4:56 pm)

    Does this mean that the healthy streets will be paid for by an assessment on the owners on those streets?  If they’re free can I have one too?  Like just in front of my house?  I live on an arterial.

    • Darryll May 7, 2020 (11:41 pm)

      I wonder if the people who have cross walks near their houses have to pay extra, too. What about people with sidewalks?! Holy cow! There’s a plague of entitlement coming from the pedestrian lobby and its threatening to ruin the city. 20 miles of road closures out of 6500+ miles of roadways in Seattle. Oh wait. It’s me that’s the problem. 

  • Bob Loblaw May 7, 2020 (4:56 pm)

    Yes, our oh-so-woke politicians can never let a crisis go to waste!  What a golden opportunity for their (not so thinly veiled) hatred of private vehicles to shine forth in the name of progress! I’m so glad Her Mayorness is shutting down those unhealthy streets now. I could get Asphalt Poisoning or Curb Induced Ankle Trauma. I wouldn’t be surprised if there’s a plan for a new West Seattle Beach Drive Cyclo-Pedestrian Village in the works somewhere………

    • Jack Loblaw May 7, 2020 (6:25 pm)

      I wonder if they are doing this in Palm Springs too?

      • Mark Loblaw May 7, 2020 (10:08 pm)

        Mark from Palm Springs here.  I haven’t heard of a plan like that here, Jack.

  • JustJan May 7, 2020 (5:01 pm)

    A number of the closures seem to be on less occupied streets, and offer new space for people.  Constellation drive is one of the best things about West Seattle – a place to actually hear and see the wonderful Sound with easy access.   It is preposterous to limit this to the residents and only”healthy bikers”.  So to visit we now need to park along 63rd if possible and walk in?  What if you have a disability, not able to walk or bike for miles?  No options left.   Why not address the crowding issues in a more democratic way  – make this  a one way to provide space, and let us access this spot.   

    • Ken May 7, 2020 (6:29 pm)

      Why not address the crowding issues in a more democratic way” 

      Because you have the misfortune of living in Seattle – where virtually nothing is democratic nor fair.  Especially if you operate a motor vehicle.

    • Lee May 7, 2020 (6:34 pm)

      The announcements say “closed to through traffic,” and the signs say “local access only.” I don’t read either of those things as forbidding anyone to park on that street to go to the park. I think this just tries to stop people from cutting through Beach Dr. to avoid traffic on 63rd, etc. I agree with you that access to the park for everyone should be preserved, but based on the language they are using I think it will be.

      • Mark Schletty May 7, 2020 (7:14 pm)

        Lee and WSJ- I’m confused. Please explain how, with streets closed to through traffic and restricted to local access only, am I supposed to legally drive on the street to be able to park. Will you rent a helicopter for me to just set me down on the street? As has been brought up on a previous occasion, this particular closure is nothing but an egregious grab by the bike lobby and property owners to get a private park for themselves. It has nothing to do with public health. The bike lobby should be ashamed of themselves.

        • Tsurly May 7, 2020 (8:13 pm)

          Pleas place the blame where it belongs: on the jagoffs who race up and down that road and peel out their tire IN CARS. They wreak havoc on that road, not bicycles.

          • Chris May 8, 2020 (9:25 am)

            Jagoffs! You must be from Pittsburgh

        • Lee May 7, 2020 (9:11 pm)

          Mark – You would drive your car onto that street for local access to that park. The roads are closed to through traffic, but the signs specifically say that local access is allowed. I don’t think the helicopter would be necessary.

        • Stevie J May 7, 2020 (11:14 pm)

          Mark, I was wondering if you had a chance to visit the link I shared with you on the last post about this topic. The one for the book (“Fighting Traffic”) that goes over in exhaustive detail how the automobile lobby (“motordom”) in the 1920s invented the mindset you are describing that streets are only for drivers. From the dawn of civilization until this time streets were for everyone. Cars were seen as hulking, deadly intruders until motordom’s powerful well funded interest groups spun up their PR machine so they could sell more cars, tires, oil, and leaded gasoline. So the next time you blame your problems on the “bike lobby”* remember that it was the automobile lobby that shaped the world we live in. Then read up on shifting baselines –your baseline is the 20th century auto age, and that isn’t the way things have always been or always should be. Please clarify why car lobbies are good but bike lobbies are bad. Thanks -Steve.

           *usually volunteers – there isn’t really any money to be made with bikes. Let me know when bike companies start spending billions per year to sway your opinion with ads like the car companies. 

          • Chris May 8, 2020 (9:30 am)

            Interesting perspective. Growing up in the 70s and 80s we used to play in the streets all day. Back then cars couldn’t accelerate as quickly as they do now. Nobody would go down the street at 40 miles an hour because they couldn’t get up to speed in one block. But now you can get up to speed in a fraction of a second. I think that the closed streets are a good idea – but I wish one was closer to me:). It is also kind of like a slap in the face because of the west Seattle Bridge. It feels like lipstick on a pig.

        • Neighborhood Greenways May 9, 2020 (8:51 am)

          Have you driven on one? Do so because, essentially that’s what these streets are becoming. It will answer all of your ludicrous questions. :D

      • Pelicans May 8, 2020 (2:29 am)

        Lee, drivers and motorcycle riders don’t “cut through” Beach Drive to avoid backup on 63rd. 63rd rarely backs up. They cruise down Beach Drive, blaring music that often has profane, violent, filthy and misogynistic lyrics for all to hear. One vehicle after another. Then they turn around on 63rd, at Alki or Beach Drive or 64th and come back for a 2nd, 3rd or 4th pass. Changing the stretch around Alki Point to one-way would even help the situation. The window frames of my old apartment actually vibrate to the noise of some of their crappy car sound systems. It’s almost non-stop on sunny days and goes on long into the night.  It’s actually a relief to hear Beatles, Adelle or John Legend at volume.And no, I shouldn’t have to leave my home of 21 years if I don’t like it. The city of Seattle should enforce the laws on the books. Gridlock is so common here, that an emergency vehicle could not get through. They closed the low bridge to all but transit, freight and emergency vehicles. God forbid I or anyone else down here should have a health emergency or a fire/gas leak, etc. on a busy summer day and call 911 for help. There are 2 cops stationed and standing right in the traffic lane at the low bridge to enforce compliance. But what about us?Rant over. Thanks for listening.

    • R May 7, 2020 (6:40 pm)

      I assumed this action was a veiled attempt to limit cut-through traffic on some streets due to bridge closure reroutes. Maybe it’s not, but it might help. 

    • Pelicans May 8, 2020 (12:54 am)

      Wow. One way traffic is a pretty good idea.

  • run_dmc May 7, 2020 (5:05 pm)

    Do we now understand what the slow-walking with getting the bridge fixed was really all about…

  • chuck jacobs May 7, 2020 (5:05 pm)

     #War On Cars 

    • where May 8, 2020 (1:05 am)

      #Peace For Pedestrians 

      • Ray Finkle May 9, 2020 (11:33 am)

        #Fight the Power

    • War On Dumb May 9, 2020 (9:22 am)

      Please start thinking with your brain and not your car because if there’s a war involving cars, the warmongering cars are driving that war.In all of the history of Seattle, I cannot find a single incident of a pedestrian lynching a car driver for simply existing, so clearly your war on cars doesn’t exist. Seattle’s history does involve wagoners lynching bicyclists for “causing damage to the roads” (which were all dirt). This is the kind of ludicrous think loop you’re in. Let’s face it, you did this to yourselves. You bought into the idea that the machine is the only way you can mobilize, then you expanded until you are out of space and then want to start whining because people aren’t just volunteering private property so you have space to drive your private property. Are you going to donate your land to the city to expand roadways for the use of everyone? No? So I guess you’re a part of this #waroncars too. Shameful!

  • Wow May 7, 2020 (5:10 pm)

    Is this a joke? Hey mayor have you actually thought about the unintended consequences of your actions? You can’t halfway close a street. You either have to fully close the street to vehicles or not close it at all. You are giving people the false sense that the street is closed to vehicles and therefore giving them a false sense of safety. I’m a delivery driver and the last couple of days I’ve driven down these “street closed” but not actually closed streets and I’ve just been shaking my head at the stupidity of it. Now people with kids are walking down the middle of the street oblivious to cars and it’s only going to get worse with this better weather we are having. My biggest fear is that I’m going to be driving down one of these streets and some kid or any person for that matter is going to dart out into the street not paying attention and I’m going to hit them. Are you or the city going to be held accountable when someone gets hit and injured or killed because they thought the street was closed to traffic when in actuality it wasn’t? You are full of ideas(many of which I’m sure aren’t your own) but you don’t actually think them through before you enact them and we pay the price for it. You’re going to have blood on your hands when someone gets killed on your so called stay healthy streets. You are a joke of a mayor

    • Vic May 7, 2020 (7:51 pm)

      People should be driving slow enough down streets (that are lined with parked cars) that they could stop quickly if a kid runs out from between the cars anyway, this doesn’t change that. I haven’t been in drivers ed for a couple decades, but that was one thing i remember being taught. Always be prepared.

      • Wow May 7, 2020 (8:41 pm)

        You do realize that no matter your reaction time, if someone, especially a kid who you can’t see behind a parked car, darts out into the street there is a chance you are not going to be able to stop in time. I do not speed down the side streets and am always on the look out for kids especially since they are out of school but this “street closed” but not closed is ridiculous. It is a recipe for disaster. Kids are going to see the sign or someone from another neighborhood will see the sign and think the road is closed to cars. I really hope I’m wrong but I have a bad feeling someone is going to get hit by a car because of our mayor and her very stupid ideas

        • GreenLakesLover May 10, 2020 (10:58 pm)

          I understand your concern  and  yes some pedestrians will not be paying attention as they should, but the chances of an accident were far greater with the car clubs and flash mobs wreaking havoc on a regular basis with their vehicles. And there were plenty of people in the middle of the  street either filming a burnout or taking a beauty shot of their car. Pedestrians were also walking in the street to avoid clouds of marijuana smoke lingering in the air or because the sidewalk was blocked by groups of people unwilling to make room for them to pass.  To say Constellation  Park for the last several years  has been an unsafe and unwelcoming place for the public  is an understatement. Now  with the Healthy Streets closure we all can “safely” enjoy one the most beautiful spots in the City again.  Halleluia! 

      • Alki May 7, 2020 (9:31 pm)

        Come on. When a 5 to 7 year old kid darts out from behind a gigantic suv it doesn’t matter how fast the guy is going. And there are speed limits for a reason. Going 20 is slow but still fast enough to kill. 

        • KM May 8, 2020 (7:26 am)

          Thanks for mentioning the giant SUV situation. The height and width of giant passenger vehicles make our roads more dangerous. 

        • nonni May 8, 2020 (8:31 am)

          I once hit a 47 year-old  who strolled out in front of a giant suv. Had he turned his head to look down the arterial, it would have taken way fewer seconds for him to put the brakes on his feet than it took me to stop my car “on a dime”. I was going less than the posted speed limit, because it was raining. On a major arterial. My heart was in my mouth, because I thought I had killed someone. Ticket for me. None for the pedestrian, because it happened at a tiny intersection. His words, “nobody ever stops here,” indicated that it was just a matter of time before someone ended up hitting him. And, no, I can’t ride a bike (arthritic knees). 35 years’ previous driving history without so much as a dent or speeding ticket, on my part. 47 years of ??? on his. And he tried to walk on, by the way, though we (the drivers present) made him wait for first responders to arrive and check him over. 

    • Darryll May 7, 2020 (11:22 pm)

      Good point. I wonder if every driver who injured or killed a pedestrian ever thought about the unintended consequences of driving everywhere? Not sure if people have noticed, but that’s happening more and more here the past few years. In fact it happened today in South Park. Anyway. Good point, Wow. 

      • Mp May 8, 2020 (9:56 am)

        No, Darryll, drivers don’t think about anyone outside of their bubbles. I avoided being run over in a crosswalk with the cross light in my favor. The lady in the minivan was on her phone and had the audacity to throw her hands in the air at me (still holding her phone.) I am a driver, but I am also a pedestrian and cyclist and parent. People need to get off their phones and pay attention to the task at hand. I surely hope her text/call/Instagram post was worth the risk to others on the road with her. I’m just so sick of seeing people in their cars on phones.

  • Hank L May 7, 2020 (5:14 pm)

    Closing public streets permanently for “health” reasons has got to be one of the stupidest things I have ever heard from this city’s administration in a long time.  All it’s doing is pushing traffic to more constricted residential streets around the closed areas which is notably more dangerous for everyone, drivers, residents and pedestrians alike.

  • Joshua's Mom May 7, 2020 (5:16 pm)

    I agree “Um, No!” – based on 40 years of working for the City of Seattle,  I had my suspicions as to the ulterior motives when the first two were announced.  Honesty and transparency still are not the strong suits of the city. 

  • TM May 7, 2020 (5:16 pm)

    Pretty sure Constellation chosen due to popularity with car crowds etc for gathering on weekends, with a very warm one coming up. Limiting congregating, as well as to alter a bit of Alki weekend cruising. 

  • West Seattle Hipster May 7, 2020 (5:19 pm)

    Much ado about nothing.  I will ignore those signs and happily drive down those streets, blaring Lynyrd Skynyrd while doing so.

    • GLHeinen May 7, 2020 (5:53 pm)

      How inconsiderate to your neighbors who may be ill, sleeping or small children sleeping.

      • Marianne May 7, 2020 (7:26 pm)

        Other people who may be ill, sleeping, or have small children sleeping will have to listen to them blare Lynyrd Skynyrd, so why should only a few be exempt?

    • Kathy May 7, 2020 (7:19 pm)

      If you feel compelled to cheat, I hope it will be in your electric vehicle. Otherwise people  trying to enjoy the park would have to breathe your effluent. Inexcusable to joyride in a fossil fuel burning vehicle.

    • Pelicans May 8, 2020 (1:28 am)

      I’m not a car hater, quite the opposite. But WS Hipster, you’re part of the problem.

      • Ray Finkle May 9, 2020 (11:34 am)

        The mayor’s enables are the entire problem.

  • Stevie J May 7, 2020 (5:23 pm)

    This is the best news I’ve heard all year! I am very impressed with the mayor, who usually doesn’t make such politically challenging decisions. We are finally becoming a 21st century city, beginning the process of shedding our automotive shells. I hope physical diverters are installed so it’s physically impossible to use these neighborhood streets to race down in an automobile. Think of putting a dead end where a roundabout would be, so only people walking and people on bikes can go through. Drivers have highways where non-drivers are excluded, so it will be nice to have some space where driving is discouraged and non-drivers can thrive in safety. 

  • Chris May 7, 2020 (5:31 pm)

    What are the street boundaries of “north end of Beach Drive?”    Trying to envision this.   Thanks.

    • WSB May 7, 2020 (7:03 pm)

      Alki Avenue to 63rd.

      • Kathy May 7, 2020 (7:53 pm)

        Hopefully they will  remember to put up signs at 63rd and Admiral Way and on the alleys that lead into the neighborhood from 63rd. 

    • Pelicans May 8, 2020 (1:31 am)

      Alki Ave. ends and Beach Drive begins on the south side of Alki Point. Hence, north Beach Drive.

  • aa May 7, 2020 (5:52 pm)

    Huh?  I’m trying to imagine the meeting where this was discussed.  What a waste of resources.  During this time of deadly illness, homelessness, unemployment, and the closing of the WS bridge to name a few, they decide to look into permanently closing streets?  It seems like a convenient way to distract themselves in this time of urgent needs.  I just got back from driving through downtown Seattle where I saw several sidewalks filled with colorful tents, piles of garbage, and more and more fencing put up to force people to go somewhere else.  I don’t care who the mayor is, they all seem to do dopey stuff.  

    • Hopeful May 8, 2020 (9:28 am)

      Agree entirely! Fix the homeless mess, repair or replace the bridge. Focus on those matters to make the city livable again. And stop making our neighborhoods worse with silly programs like this.

  • winniegirl May 7, 2020 (6:03 pm)

    Most of these streets only benefit the people in those neighborhoods. Or am I supposed to go to those neighborhoods so that I can walk in the street?  Many of the streets in West Seattle at least are alternate routes out of the neighborhood.  It seems like they are trying to filter all of the people on to one route, which will just make it slower.  Is there a hierarchy of streets that I’m unaware of?  I thought all streets were public access. We don’t live in gated communities. This doesn’t make any sense to me.

  • Joe Z May 7, 2020 (6:11 pm)

    Keep it up Mayor Durkan! Don’t let the small group of complainers hold this up. 

  • WSJoe May 7, 2020 (6:20 pm)

    Is this legal?  Isn’t this a gift of publicly financed streets to select groups of property owners.  (If they don’t sell or get assessed out of their houses). If not motivated by corruption it seems like an invitation to corruption.  It also seems like an invitation to legal challenge, recall or repeal petitions.

    • Chris May 8, 2020 (9:36 am)

      It would be illegal to get a ticket for using one of these streets. You can use them, but people might think you are a jerk. Especially if you blare Lynyrd Skynyrd. Try something more soothing like Sade or Enya.

    • NickH May 8, 2020 (10:01 am)

      Most of these roads are owned by the adjoining landowners already, they were dedicated to the public good (easement) when the lots were carved out. So, you’re really asking yourself, “is it really legal for SDOT to close Seattle streets?”, and I suspect the answer is yes. 

  • Bradley May 7, 2020 (6:50 pm)

    I will not comply. I will use these SHS streets as through streets as I see fit. I will park at Constellation Park with my family this weekend. 

    • rme May 7, 2020 (9:50 pm)

      What a great place to put your energy. Such bold civil disobedience! 

      • Bradley May 8, 2020 (12:04 am)

        No “energy” output involved. I’m just going to continue to enjoy my usual streets and Constellation Park as I always have.

        • Josh May 8, 2020 (11:14 am)

          Go get ’em Bradley.

        • GreenLakesLover May 10, 2020 (11:33 pm)

           Bradly, what the heck if being a scofflaw devotee is the example of citizenship you want to set for your family, go right ahead.  Let’s just hope it ends there and that you don’t make the lives of the residents and visitors to this area a living hell like the modified exhaust car culture people do. Trust me you’ll have a much better and safer time when you come to visit Constellation Park now that they are no no longer able to regularly endanger the public by speeding, racing, doing burnouts and donuts,  making incessant loud engine outbursts then driving their vehicles after very visible drug and alcohol consumption. Yes you might need to walk just a bit farther but only the road has been closed—not the park.

  • ya! May 7, 2020 (6:51 pm)

    Fantastic news! Many thanks for making these streets safer for our children!

    • Jack F May 8, 2020 (7:07 pm)

      As pointed out by a delivery driver above, the only thing this this bone-headed policy will accomplish is the exact opposite of “making the streets safer”.  A closed/not-closed street policy encourages a completely false and dangerous sense of security for children and pedestrians that is guaranteed to end badly for somebody.

  • how May 7, 2020 (6:57 pm)

    Amazing! How do we take the survey?

  • Tsurly May 7, 2020 (7:24 pm)


  • Nate May 7, 2020 (7:37 pm)

    Awesome news! Making the street adjacent to Constellation Park “Local Access Only” will take a busier-than-ever non-arterial street that’s currently hazardous to walkers, joggers and cyclists and make it possible for people to social distance and stay safe while accessing these beautiful parks.  

  • Ray Finkle May 7, 2020 (7:53 pm)

    Completely asinine. I am another one who will not comply. You can’t police them all. I suggest kids not play in these streets. As if traffic is not already a nightmare here with the bridge closure. Durkan you’re a joke.

    • rme May 7, 2020 (9:54 pm)

      What an absurd and reckless thing to say. “Don’t play in the street that’s been designated for playing, children! I’m mad so I’m going to drive down it anyways! Watch out!” 

      • Jack F May 8, 2020 (7:09 pm)

        The streets have not been “designated for playing”, residential and delivery vehicles will still be using them at the same frequency and speed they always have.  This is a good example of how dangerous and short-sighted this policy is.

    • Darryll May 7, 2020 (11:25 pm)

      That’s like me threatening to toss a brick through your windshield when you drive down my street. Just kinda stinks to think that there are people with that attitude. 

  • idk May 7, 2020 (8:00 pm)

    When I was little, living in West Seattle and learning to ride a bike was no big deal. I used the sidewalk and my parents always kept a watchful eye on me to make sure I didn’t ride in the street. Sure, this was pre-pre pandemic, but I could still play on my block on a sunny day with neighbors walking and biking all around. What exactly do ‘stay healthy’ streets provide? More access to the roads so your kids could play in them? Clearly I was parented right because I was never allowed allowed to play in the street anyway. Even now with the new closure signs, delivery trucks still make their way through the streets. They’re essential. They have to do their job. What’s going to happen if one of your unattended children dart through the street and is hit by a large delivery truck? What then? Kids should stay out of the streets period. Streets are meant for bikes or cars, not for children that have a hard time knowing right from wrong. And what about a potential back up on arterials? Cars won’t be able to dodge traffic through residential streets, creating unnecessary back up which could easily prevent emergency vehicles from getting to their destination. Usually, the people who support these kinds of things, are the people who get angry when an emergency vehicle doesn’t show up on time. 

    • Darryll May 7, 2020 (11:14 pm)

      Cars already don’t stop at stop signs on these residential streets. Here’s a video I took of the greenway on 17th southwest 3 years ago. It’s dark out and the street is wet, and 80% of drivers roll through. Some don’t even slow down. Nothing has changed.https://youtu.be/pxJfogQQflkIf you think this is safe for kids, I question your judgement. I am all for letting drivers sit in traffic on the main streets. 

      • miws May 8, 2020 (9:59 am)

        Darryll, as you did in reply to another commenter;  __clicks the Like button__ —Mike

  • AJP May 7, 2020 (8:07 pm)

    We have had a great time biking as a family on the safer streets. It’s been a great way for the kids to get used to street biking and learning about the rules of the road. It kind of feels like when I was a kid and could bike around my neighborhood with my friends. 

  • Julia May 7, 2020 (8:07 pm)

    Traffic can get congested along Constellation Park (or as us old-timers call it, “by the sewer plant”). I suggest making the road around Alki Point one way, from north to south. They could add a bike lane on the water side and have parking just inside that.

  • uncle loco May 7, 2020 (8:13 pm)

    We have a health/economic crisis and this is what our city leaders are up to? These people are so out of touch it’s laughable.

  • Kyle May 7, 2020 (8:19 pm)

    I actually am a proponent of most of this, but the lack of notice and public debate on these permanent changes is kind of staggering. This seems like a unilateral decision by the city. Why do we do months of reviews and public comment on some public right of way things, and then just blanket close 20 miles to thru traffic on others? The dichotomy makes no sense. If this is a good idea, let it stand up to a public comment and proper review process.

  • Jeffrey Baxter May 7, 2020 (8:21 pm)

    This is great!

  • Ookla the Mok May 7, 2020 (8:23 pm)

    This is fantastic!  Honestly, I had grown tired of the usual whining on these comment threads centered around fireworks vs. gunshots, dogs crapping in my yard, the horrors of development without off-street parking, the tyranny of reducing streets from four lanes to two lanes, etc., etc.  But, my interest is now renewed!  Between the absurdly breathless gripes being raised about restricting traffic on residential side streets, and the meltdowns I’m seeing about a 5 mph reduction of the speed limit (something that was announced months ago), I should be thoroughly entertained for another couple weeks of shelter in place!   

    • Darryll May 7, 2020 (11:04 pm)

      __clicks the Like button__

  • Ray May 7, 2020 (8:31 pm)

    At the risk of sounding like a “Git off my lawn,  yuh damn kids!” guy, I hope the usual congregating of teens and 20-somethings near Constellation Park is put to a halt, at least during the Covid-19 emergency. I have no problem with kids hanging out together, but not when they’re buying/selling drugs, littering, revving up their cars, smoking, etc. They’ve never hassled me, but I usually cross the street to avoid the smoke and noise.

  • Had enough May 7, 2020 (8:42 pm)

    Can we recall Durkan?  I swear the politicians in this city are incrementally turning me into a republican, one stupid decision after another. 

    • TM7302 May 8, 2020 (12:07 pm)

      Clicks the like button…

  • Questionable... May 7, 2020 (8:52 pm)

    This is complete nonsense and really is nothing but political cover for the fact that we have no COVID testing infrastructure despite the promises made. Unemployment is crushing the city and the region and government thinks implementing this type of policy will distract everyone both pro and con. If the mayor is serious about this, then perhaps the streets that should be first in this effort should be the ones where the mayor, members of city council and all other public officials who sponsor this stuff live. 

    • Darryll May 7, 2020 (11:02 pm)

      Indeed. It’s got to be a conspiracy. This has got to be a diversion to downplay the fact that Seattle isn’t taking this pandemic seriously. 5G!

  • Byron May 7, 2020 (9:17 pm)

    This is excellent, and I’m all for it! We need more spaces to be human-powered and move our bodies. We have plenty of spaces to rush around in cars.

    My part of the peninsula only has intermittent sidewalks, and I walk my stroller with my head on a swivel. It’s such a relief when I make it to the reduced traffic Safer Streets. Yes, there are still folks in cars on these streets, but they don’t seem to be driving as aggressively.

    Those of you insisting that you will “refuse to comply” with these street use changes, do you feel that your right to drive unimpeded on a residential street is greater than my right to walk down that same street with my child? These changes are about making life safer and better for US, all of us. And not about making things harder for YOU.

  • Anonymous May 7, 2020 (9:35 pm)

    Here is an idea the streets that are now for only residents should have their property value and property tax go down. Crazy idea. Then the city would get less money. It’s total a war on cars. 

    • WSB May 7, 2020 (9:48 pm)

      Ever looked at property-assessment breakdowns? Traffic nearby is actually a strike AGAINST value, not for it. Also, the city only gets about a fifth of your property tax (I just checked). And last but not least, the next property assessment isn’t until next January, and that’s for the taxes you’ll be paying in 2022.

    • Darryll May 7, 2020 (11:00 pm)

      There needs to be a war on cars. It’s been a war on pedestrians for the last 100 years. 

      • Chris K May 8, 2020 (8:23 am)

        Agreed.  I’m keeping my fingers crossed that this will drive some of the car lovers to eastern Washington.

      • miws May 8, 2020 (10:01 am)

        __clicks the Like button__ again… —Mike

  • CL May 7, 2020 (9:55 pm)

    If they are going to keep Trenton closed they need to add another closed sign to 17th. Cars get to the roundabout at 17th & Trenton and than turn North onto 17th to re-route, yet 17th is also supposed to closed.  There is a closed sign at the next intersection of 17th & Cloverdale so people are in the street. But I see cars zooming by my house all day cutting through. It’s not safe. 

  • Sassy May 7, 2020 (10:02 pm)

    This thread: Too many Trumpets, not enough violins…

    • AdmiralSDV May 8, 2020 (4:47 am)

      I see what you did there. Agreed. 

  • 1994 May 7, 2020 (10:29 pm)

    I feel sorry for the neighboring streets and residents  which will see an increase of traffic due to closing certain the streets. This only pushes traffic onto other streets and does nothing to reduce traffic. Seems a waste of city employee time and money. And also seems very unfair to all of us who pay taxes to support a transportation system that by the week is becoming more and more restrictive. As another poster mentioned, this makes sense on high density streets where hundreds of people live in apartments or condos with limited immediate access to outdoor space. But single family residence neighborhoods? All the homes have yards.

    • Kathy May 8, 2020 (3:02 pm)

      Don’t feel sorry for me. I live on an arterial in Alki and I am thrilled that there should be less cruising (if people  comply) west of 63rd Ave SW. It will make the neighborhood so much more pleasant for walks, and hopefully cut down on the drag racing by Constellation Park. After all, they are not banning people from these areas, just cars and their operators driving through with no valid purpose. Sorry, cutting through in your car to get around traffic on the arterial is not a valid purpose.

      • 1994 May 8, 2020 (9:22 pm)

        Sdot response to issues of cut through traffic in regards to the HPAC 13 concerns/requests about the high bridge closure.  So suddenly closing 20 miles of city streets to through traffic seems like the city is not even following it’s own rules!!Status/update: Cut-through traffic is a complicated issue. Any attempts to eliminate or discourage cut-through traffic may solve the issue on one street, but most likely will have secondary, unintended impacts on adjacent streets within the neighborhood. As a result, evaluating cut-through traffic requires a comprehensive neighborhood traffic study to quantify the problem, develop neighborhood-wide solutions and build consensus. We can get back to you on this idea as we engage the neighborhood on the collaborative neighborhood traffic plan that we are developing. 

    • Cherry May 9, 2020 (5:02 pm)

      Holy cow, why doesn’t anyone listen to reason?  Don’t the residents have a legitimate complaint? All were saying is we need to get rid of ungodly loud cars that totally disrespect the area.  They pollute the air, with never ending exhaust and  noise. Not to mention the after hours sub culture that seems to disappear after dark to the dark, non visible  Sand below the beach bulkhead. Here is a huge part of the ever growing problem. Do you not think this is an issue? If you don’t get it then you have just identified yourself as one of them. We need law abiding,  people in our neighborhoods, not defiant , self serving  druggies!! 

  • Felix Grounds May 7, 2020 (10:42 pm)

    OMG!!West Seattle, would you like some cheese with that whiiiiiiiiiine.Get a grip people. 

  • Ted May 7, 2020 (10:43 pm)

    This is not a legal approach to closing streets. Sure closing them for public safety – and valid arguments during a pandemic – but this is not a legitimate use of our  tax payer dollars to close these streets. I’m sure along Constellation Park they are happy due to the number of car clubs that have taken to hanging out there – but there are different approaches to this. Using a pandemic and then making something permanent has to violate some public trust / law. I will be exploring with my attorney. 

    • Ds May 8, 2020 (5:22 pm)

      Good. Thanks Ted. 

  • Darryll May 7, 2020 (10:57 pm)

    The level of entitlement around car privileges is astounding.

    • Ice May 8, 2020 (12:18 am)

      Yes, some drivers seem to think it is their god given right to drive on any asphalt surface they want, even at the expense of everyone else. I own a car but I am not going to sit around and pretend that cars are completely benign and don’t cause all kinds of problems.

  • Steve35 May 7, 2020 (11:10 pm)

    Oh how precious. Well do what you want.  I drive down Beach Drive to Alki to walk every day. I will continue to drive down that road to the statue where I park. Have a nice day.

    • Steve35 May 8, 2020 (10:48 am)

      Whoops. My bad. I was visualizing the wrong street. Iv recently stopped using that road as the amount of cars parked there and at the corner have made it increasingly dangerous for cars bikes what have you. Mea culpa 

  • MM May 7, 2020 (11:16 pm)

    Next Durkan and Company will say, oh by the way, the West Seattle Bridge is now a permanent pedestrian only bridge along with the stay safe streets since it can’t handle the weight of vehicles.  

    • Seattle Refugee May 8, 2020 (8:54 am)

      You jest, but people also said a few weeks ago that these streets would become perm and everyone laughed….. 

  • LL May 7, 2020 (11:58 pm)

    I pay my fair share of taxes and I will continue to drive all roads as usual.  I understand the ‘safe streets’ during the pandemic and will abide but not afterwards.  As far as the parents teaching their kids how to ride their bikes in the streets…good luck!  I know it feels liberating and all Norman Rockwell like but you’re being 100% foolish and irresponsible.  You live in a city!!!

  • Rico May 8, 2020 (3:31 am)

    I like this idea.    This is not a Seattle idea or anything new.   However, any road diet makes getting around more difficult.However, leveraging the pandemic to implement it, lying to the citizens about the city’s true intentions,  and doing it unilaterally without any community input is another example of the leadership void that is city hall and SDOT.While the new head tax was recently tabled, city council wanted to leverage the pandemic to implement a new head tax,  when the city is enjoying record revenues,  businesses are shut down, and citizens are hurting. Seattle is a city without leaders.

  • WS321 May 8, 2020 (4:37 am)

    I have had the pleasure of spending some substantial time in Europe.  Even densely packed cities there are human-scaled and a delight for pedestrians and cyclists. It is precisely this kind of infrastructure usage (restricted vehicle access) privileging people over vehicles which creates such a wonderful environment. When implemented widely, it encourages people to travel by foot and car. The result is actually faster and more hassle- free movement for drivers. It’s win-win once enough pedestrian and cycling infrastructure is in place. What a terrific direction for the city to head. Seattle could be a national leader!

    • Ray Finkle May 8, 2020 (8:45 am)

      Get in your time machine and change the way our city was laid out to match. While you’re at it let’s get that money back from Atlanta to build us some rapid transit and we’ll be golden.

    • dan May 8, 2020 (9:41 am)

      I have traveled in Europe and Asia as well, the way European/Asian cities have developed is much different than in the US.  They cover a much smaller area with large dense populations close to stadiums, food, museums etc. Seattle like most US cities is spread out, in Seattle we have many hills, and large neighborhoods miles away from these same resources.  Most of us live in single family homes with nice large yards, you don’t find this as much in Europe or Asia

      • WSB May 8, 2020 (10:10 am)

        No, “most of us” do not live in detached houses. Half of Seattle’s residents are renters. West Seattle alone has added thousands of apartments in the past decade-plus (we’ve chronicled them all since 2007). And even in the non-renter category, hundreds of townhouses have been built,too.

      • CarFree May 8, 2020 (2:15 pm)

        I’ve lived car free in West Seattle for the past 15 years, it’s not a problem. It’s a huge benefit.There is practically nothing in West Seattle that I can’t easily walk to, after walking regularly for years and years, you get used to it and it’s easy and enjoyable to do, and I’m not young but I am in much better shape than I would be if I drove everywhere.If I need to go somewhere outside of West Seattle, I just Uber or take the bus.

    • TM7302 May 8, 2020 (12:15 pm)

      How was the public transportation system over there?  Better than Seattle I imagine…

  • grow up May 8, 2020 (5:50 am)

    Sigh. Carholes continue to be carholes at even the slightest provocation.

    Breathe. I promise you will survive this assault on your unassailable, totally inviolate rights as car drivers.

    Try to make do on the uncountable millions of miles of roads (and parking!) which are still left to you and your very-surly ilk.

  • flimflam May 8, 2020 (6:14 am)

    is this really legal? in a city where things are planned by committee and then presented to the public then go back to committee then environmental review etc etc etc this seemed to just come to be with the snap of a fingers. i don’t really have an opinion one way or the other, it just seems strange and way out of character from how things usually work…

  • Jack May 8, 2020 (6:34 am)

    If those parts of Beach Drive and Alki Ave are dead ends where are they going to turn around?  I see a lot jam parking lot this weekend.

  • Foop May 8, 2020 (7:07 am)

    I love the irony of people griping here when just above this is a post about a pedestrian getting hot by a car in south Park. I love this and I hope we progress to entire car free areas of the city as our transit infrastructure grows.

  • Mark Schletty May 8, 2020 (8:07 am)

    I really do feel sorry for the people who live on Constellation Drive. I’m very aware of the problem some people cause there. But the residents are pushing for the wrong solution. In this city the innocent are punished rather than punishing the guilty. Taking away access to everyone because a bunch of the same miscreants keep making it miserable to live there is wrongheaded. The residents should instead use their money and efforts to get the City Council and Mayor to take the handcuffs of the police and let them do their jobs. Much of the behavior of the troublemakers violates numerous laws. Enforce them. Don’t deny access to those of us who respect your neighborhood and cause you no trouble.  

  • dan May 8, 2020 (8:40 am)

    Delridge/Highland Park.  Where was the public input?  Blocking off henderson which is a main thoroughfare between 16th and North side of  West Wood Village has to be the worst decision.  Oh but wait no closing Myrtle and blocking one of the busiest streets in West Seattle connecting 16th with Delridge way and access to gas stations, Elemetry school, and increasing traffic to an over congested intersetion of 16 and Holden, is worse.  With the close of the West Seattle Bridge having access to all through streets in West Seattle to avoid huge backups on Highland park way, Holden and Delridge way has to be a priority. No one rides their bikes on this route, they ride on 16th, few people walk these streets there are no parks, stores, few trees, no scenic views, its a lower income area, nothing to attact people to walk these streets and there are sidewalks on this route.

    • dan May 8, 2020 (9:01 am)

      Thats Trenton not Henderson

    • TM7302 May 8, 2020 (12:21 pm)

      I live on 15th and haven’t seen any increase in bike traffic after the city implemented the bike corridor.  We have speed bumps that don’t work, new bike signals and cyclists that avoid the route because it makes the trip longer.

      • Kyle May 8, 2020 (10:18 pm)

        Agree with the meta point…the public input on this was abysmal. While borderline okay for a temporary order, making these changes permanent with little to no public review is incredulous.

      • Aaron May 8, 2020 (11:16 pm)

        This is absolutely true. I’d add that the speed bumps are extra miserable on a bicycle as well, and one of the main reasons I do not take the “greenways” while bicycling, and the added distance and hills just make them even worse. Poorly executed. Seems like enforcing existing laws would be better. I’d prefer getting rid of the center dead lane on Delridge and making a bike lane on both sides instead.

  • HP resident May 8, 2020 (8:54 am)

    I live next to Highland Park elementary and the streets surrounding the school are half closed. How are the school buses supposed to just go around the signs and not hit someone? This is not a safe idea to keep them permanently 

  • anonyme May 8, 2020 (8:56 am)

    I think of the “war on cars” fanatics in the same light as the Michigidiots who showed up at the legislature with assault rifles to (purportedly) protest pandemic safety measures.  If having public safety and livable cities are “ulterior motives” in some kind of government conspiracy, I say bring it on.

  • cwit May 8, 2020 (9:08 am)

    Interesting news. I’m planning on having a bike ride along Beach Drive and see how it is in practice before I start making veiled threats about kids playing in the streets, thumping my chest about how I’m going to flaunt the new rules, or wax poetic about how my parents brought me up right.

  • Don Brubeck May 8, 2020 (9:18 am)

    It is just as legal as blocking streets and doing snow routes when it snows. 

  • Voy May 8, 2020 (9:33 am)

    Blocking Trenton and Myrtle is a bad idea and will add to the traffic mess that will be West Seattle.With the closure of the West Seattle Bridge having access to all streets in West Seattle to avoid traffic on Highland park way, Holden, 35th, CA., Roxbury and Delridge has to be a priority.No one rides their bikes on these routes, they ride on the same streets as you find bus routes.Please open this up now, don’t block these streets.

  • CMK May 8, 2020 (9:43 am)

    I am not for the anti- car policies of this city. However, I live right across from Constellation Park, and there is a constant problem with drivers acting dangerously. It’s jam packed with car and motorcycle clubs partying on evenings and weekends…the red solo cups and constant wafts of pot coming out of their cars makes me think there’s no way most of them are driving home sober. They use the road as a racetrack looping around and down 63rd and around the point. I and my neighbors have seen plenty of drag racing ( yes- using both lanes including the oncoming), wheelies, games of “chicken”, burning rubber, peel outs, and excessively high dangerous speeds, and car accidents. It is a problem and dangerous to not only pedestrians and bikes, but other cars as well. I’m glad they are finally doing something about it!!

    • WSJ May 8, 2020 (10:46 am)

      This comment is perfect. “I don’t like it when a policy seems anti-car… but if’s anti-someone-else’s-car doing something I don’t like, I’m all for it! Just don’t you dare tell me how *I* can use MY street.”

  • Lagartija Nick May 8, 2020 (9:45 am)

    Wow, who knew that less than 1% of residential side streets were so vital to car drivers mobility in West Seattle. /S

    • Zarand May 11, 2020 (7:38 am)


  • MW May 8, 2020 (10:12 am)

    to the delivery truck guy above who said this makes his deliveries on those streets more dangerous as he could hit an idiot who jumps in front of his truck…,you and other delivery drivers should leave parcels at the end of a  closed street in  a safe locked container that those street residents should provide for their own deliveries.   Pizza and food deliveries can happen by calling the customer to meet you at the end of their closed street.  Problem solved and no one then should worry about hitting a random street walker or biker.  The closed streets can then be left to be reclaimed by nature (and hikers).  Tell Mayor Durken, have SDOT tear up those safe streets and turn them into trails.  Let’s grow gardens down their centers!   Let’s plant flowers and native plants, where there were once tires.    Everyone can come out to participate in returning our city to its rightful place in nature.  

  • Concerned May 8, 2020 (10:27 am)

    I’ve read most of the comments here and I can understand both the pros and cons. What I haven’t seen mentioned is the fact that those streets were and are taxpayer funded. Every single taxpayer has a stake in them and they are designed to be used by the public. If use is limited to local access, how is it just and fair to allow limited use when all have paid for them? Are city owned streets not a public space? Can the City determine who uses other publicly owned properties, i.e. parks, ball fields, etc…? This is an overreach by the local government and if nothing else, that much should be acknowledged by all. 

    • WSB May 8, 2020 (10:35 am)

      To clarify: No one is barred from USING the streets. Not a single, solitary soul. They are and continue to be open to the public. What the city says is that *motor vehicle usage* on these three stretches is limited to residents, delivery, solid-waste pickup.

      • Concerned May 8, 2020 (11:44 am)

        WSB, I agree that no one is “barred” from using the streets. Just limited to those that live there or have business needs. How is that justifiable though to every taxpayer in the city that has put forth money to use that street as it was designed and intended to be used? When they designed and built our streets it wasn’t for local access only in mind, it was for the traveling public, mainly automobile, now multi use, but for the entire tax paying public. I fully support the healthy streets idea, permanently restricting the full use of tax payer funded use of infrastructure… Causes me, and I hope everyone concern. 

      • Concerned May 8, 2020 (11:59 am)

        WSB, could you let us all know what streets in the City of Seattle that are fully tax payer funded are limited to local access only and why?

        • WSB May 8, 2020 (1:24 pm)

          No, that would be a huge project. If you mean which ones citywide have been designated “Stay Healthy Streets,” check the links in our coverage or just go to https://sdotblog.seattle.gov – If you mean other “local access only” streets, that would be an immense project. There are some narrow streets marked that way – Atlas over Beach Drive, for example.

          • Concerned May 8, 2020 (3:42 pm)

            WSB, the streets that are currently designated as local access only are for design reasons. I.E. narrow, dead end or some other obvious hazard to the traveling public. To do the same on a residential through street that was paid for with the expectation of being able to use it for its intended purpose isn’t even in the same metric, two very different items. My question is, how can a street be restricted to local access only when all have paid for it? And if that can be done on a permanent basis can parks, boat launches,, the City Center, beaches etc. be closed off to certain groups? If not please explain. Seems very NIMBY to me.  

          • Concerned May 8, 2020 (3:51 pm)

            WSB As far as the request for the aforementioned streets, a simple PDR (Public Disclosure Request) to the City would provide that information. Not that difficult as I imagine you already know. 

      • Ally May 8, 2020 (8:21 pm)

        So my mom is disabled and has a ada plague she enjoys that park I assume she can drive and park and get out 

    • heartless May 8, 2020 (2:21 pm)


      If I am reading this correctly, you are worried that you (vis a vis your tax dollars) are not getting your money’s worth if some streets are suddenly unavailable for you to drive on?

      If so, I will personally reimburse you for the Seattle healthy streets closures.  How much did you pay in taxes, and how much of that went specifically to street infrastructure?  From there take out highways/bridges/etc., and just look at the amount that went to the (roughly) 7,000 lane-miles of road in Seattle.  Then take .29% of that figure (the 20 miles closed in West Seattle being that percent of 7,000).  

      What do I owe you?  (And yes, this is an absolutely serious offer–I am directly putting my money where my mouth is.)

  • wetone May 8, 2020 (10:34 am)

    I would like to see a survey done on these street closures with a couple real questions. I want to know if the people Pro Street Closures live in area ? are renters ?  and/or people that use bicycles or transit for main transportation ? Do they work ?  do they work from home  ? For home/condo property owners that live in affected areas are they for or against the street closures ? Do they work ? do they work from home ? What’s their main transportation ? Same questions on cameras coming. I want numbers to prove to me that this is what the people want. Between these street closures, cameras coming along with Highrise bridge issue (if people only new the real facts)  I know who I won’t be voting for ;)   

    • DS May 8, 2020 (5:28 pm)

      @concerned as others have typed in other replies: clicks like button and +1

    • Matt A May 8, 2020 (8:46 pm)

      Hi! I live on Beach Drive not far from the closed section. I own my home, I work, I guess I work from home at the moment, but I worked outside of West Seattle before this current situation, and my main form of transportation is a car. This evening I rode my bike down by Constellation Park, and it was amazing! I think it’s a huge improvement, & it’s open to everyone to enjoy—on foot, or on a bike, or a skateboard or rollerskates or whatever. I just wish they’d close it all the way to the other end of 63rd, or at least to where the bike trail & pedestrian path starts on Alki. 

      • WSB May 8, 2020 (9:18 pm)

        There’s a discussion under way on Twitter with city traffic engineer Dongho Chang which sounds like that’s under consideration. I’m including the tweets in tonight’s roundup.

    • 1994 May 8, 2020 (9:29 pm)

      SDOT reply to HPAC concerns about cut through traffic. Does the City even communicate with the Sdot people?Status/update: Cut-through traffic is a complicated issue. Any attempts to eliminate or discourage cut-through traffic may solve the issue on one street, but most likely will have secondary, unintended impacts on adjacent streets within the neighborhood. As a result, evaluating cut-through traffic requires a comprehensive neighborhood traffic study to quantify the problem, develop neighborhood-wide solutions and build consensus. We can get back to you on this idea as we engage the neighborhood on the collaborative neighborhood traffic plan that we are developing. 

  • Josh May 8, 2020 (11:12 am)

    “The Local Traffic Only signs should be used where road user flow detours to avoid a closure
    some distance beyond the sign, but where local road users can use the roadway to the point of closure. These
    signs should be accompanied by appropriate warning and detour signing.” If you’re going to the park,  you’re a local user. If you’re part of that neighborhood, you’re a local user. If you just want to drive halfway down the street and turn around, you’re a local user! You won’t get a ticket unless the SPD officer is having a bad day or you’re being a d—head about it.  There is still a foundation of laws and best practices when driving that most people ignore. Don’t use a cellphone while driving (ever!), don’t go above the posted speed limit, use a GD signal when turning. These are basic safety factors that the “war on cars” people seldom ever recognize. How about a war on s—ty drivers?

  • anonyme May 8, 2020 (12:39 pm)

    Concerned, unless you are suggesting that taxpayer-funded sidewalks should be open to cars and that all streets and arterials should be open to pedestrians, your argument makes no sense.  Not every piece of public infrastructure can, does or should allow any and all forms of use.

    • Josh May 8, 2020 (2:30 pm)

      I agree. The argument needed the context that I was only talking about cars. My point being, we can all go to the same places we wanted to before, we just shouldn’t use non-arterial streets as shortcuts. The quote at the top of my original post is from the federal guidelines on “Local Traffic Only” signs. What I’m saying is, if you’re driving down that street and not just driving through, you’re a local user.  So, in reference to earlier posts about people who jumped to the conclusion that they can’t drive to their favorite park anymore, or they can’t do X anymore, or they can’t do Y anymore, are unfounded. You can drive to where you want to go just maybe not on the road that you took before. Or, let’s be real, they won’t enforce these and this whole comments section will be moot. 

    • GAM May 8, 2020 (3:20 pm)

      Concerned’s comments make perfect sense.   We paid taxes to build and maintain the streets.  Now the city allows only the rich and wealthy who live on Beach Dr and Alki to drive down the street while the rest of us are made to walk…and we’re still paying for the street.     

      • heartless May 8, 2020 (3:27 pm)

        …and we’re still paying for the street. “

        Since this seems to be about money for you, let me ask: How much are you paying for that street?  

        • Ray Finkle May 8, 2020 (4:22 pm)

          The exact same amount as the people who live on that street. Your point?

          • heartless May 8, 2020 (4:54 pm)

            My point was to engage directly with those that are trying to make this about money, specifically that they feel short-changed because they paid taxes for these roads and are thus not getting their money’s worth.  I am asking them just how short-changed they got. Once they run the numbers, I’m happy to talk about personally making them whole. So please, go ahead and figure out how much you have paid for Seattle roads in general, then figure that out of the 6,500 lane-miles of road how many got closed in West Seattle, and, etc., etc. The amount will… not be much.

    • Concerned May 8, 2020 (4:06 pm)

      anonyme, I’m not suggesting nor inferring that sidewalks should be open to vehicles but thank you for bringing that subject up. Let’s suppose for the sake of argument, that a sidewalk were to be closed down due to concerns of the spread of COVID-19. I get that (extreme but stay with me) and once the pandemic was over that sidewalk plus others remained closed to the people that paid for them. Would you want that if the shoe was on the proverbial “other foot”?

  • Mark Schletty May 8, 2020 (2:50 pm)

    Just a follow up. I just was at Constellation Park. There are no local access or through traffic signs. There are STREET CLOSED signs. I broke the law and drove slowly northbound through the street. Then 15 minutes later I drove slowly southbound and parked for a few minutes. There were people in the street trying to force me off onto side roads. Between both slow trips I counted 3 bicycles on the road. This completely sucks.

    • KM May 8, 2020 (4:30 pm)

      Mark, as many people have already explained to you, you don’t break the law by accessing Constellation Park in your vehicle, so you don’t have to worry. SDOT has stated that they have run out of some signs and have had to improvise. You won’t be arrested, and it sounds like you were still able to enjoy the park, assuming those 3 bicyclist didn’t try to run you over or revved their engines too loud, and none of the people trying to “force you off onto the side roads” did so with guns or other weapons. Have a great weekend.

      • Zilla May 8, 2020 (5:40 pm)

        I tried to go to the park today. Drove slowly around street closed sign to park and was yelled at by people there that the street was CLOSED!! I was discouraged by their aggressive behavior and just kept driving. I just wanted to sit and eat my lunch, outside by the water and enjoy the sun and view. I can’t afford to live in a neighborhood w/ a view of the water and rely on publicly accessible spaces for this small joy. The criteria I read for street closures included low car ownership and decreased access to outdoor areas as reasons for certain streets to be chosen. Neither of these things apply to the entirety of Beach Drive. Denying public access to a public city park that The public pays taxes on to maintain, in order to create a private park for local residents and people that can bike to only is not OK. At the south end of the street the street closed sign was blocking so much of the street I could just squeak through without hitting because I have a very small car. Emergency vehicles and delivery trucks would not be able to do this.

        • heartless May 8, 2020 (7:22 pm)

          At the south end of the street the street closed sign was blocking so much of the street I could just squeak through without hitting because I have a very small car.”

          I can’t begin to express how much I love everything about this complaint.  I mean, The Onion could not have done this any better.  

          • Zilla May 8, 2020 (8:04 pm)

            Heartless you must not understand how streets work. There is a beginning and an end. The only other way out would have been a u-turn and go back out the way I came, on this supposed still open for local use street which I was screamed at for trying to use, locally. How is that better? 

  • Bob Lang May 8, 2020 (3:34 pm)

    Rich people who live on alki shouldn’t  get preferential  public street parking.  We all pay taxes.  This is a terrible  decision.   City has really taken advantage of this health crisis  to push multiple  agendas.

  • joe May 8, 2020 (4:32 pm)

    Bob Lang. Hate to break the news but “rich” people live in almost every neighborhood in the city.

    • Rick May 10, 2020 (1:24 pm)

      Don’t worry Joe, we’ll get around to taking care of them too.

      • heartless May 10, 2020 (1:55 pm)

        Ah, yes, the rich do like to be taken care of.  So you’re offering services as a domestic worker, are you? Very thoughtful.

  • anonyme May 8, 2020 (5:16 pm)

    Concerned, I’m not actually sold on these closures being permanent, despite the fact that I believe undue priority and privilege has long been given to drivers.  I’m just saying that the argument supporting any preferred usage of any right-of-way by anyone who pays taxes is flawed and unworkable. 

  • pallyn@comcast.net May 8, 2020 (5:29 pm)

    Thank you!!! I live across from the Alki Lighthouse, and finally, due to Street Closure signs…we are  getting a little peace and quiet. Can I tell you how loud it can get down here with boom boxes and mufflers blaring for hours on end?!  All they do is go around and around and around the block. Then, they stop on Beach drive and have a party for hours on end.Thank you so much for this program…and hopefully this will be PERMANENT!!!  Alki Ave SW and Beach Drive…peace at last!!!!

  • Authority and process in Municipal Code May 8, 2020 (6:15 pm)

    Based on the number and nature of the comments on this article, communication regarding the origin of this decision and process by which it has been approved appears to have been very poor.  
    There are specific chapters in the City of Seattle Municipal Code under Title 11 that would help clarify the authority and process to make these decisions to limit traffic on public roads.     Individuals also have the authority to appeal the decision in 10 days of the decision so get going people.    I don’t think I have seen anyone asked for the Traffic Engineer report which would normally part of the process when determining changes to street use.   Authority    11.16.120 – Director of Transportation—Authority.11.16.125 – Director of Transportation—Authority—Street and alley closures.   11.16.240 – Traffic Engineer—Authority—    Review and recommend   Review of Decisions (aka Appeals)   15.04.112 – Decisions—Review or reconsideration

    • Ray Finkle May 9, 2020 (11:35 am)

      A very thoughtful post. Of course the rules only matter when the government wants them to. Thanks for illustrating this hypocritical power grab by the mayor.

      • heartless May 9, 2020 (12:40 pm)

        No, it wasn’t a very thoughtful post.

        The person who wrote that post said they haven’t “seen anyone asked for the Traffic Engineer report…”  

        Who the hell thinks the comments section of the West Seattle Blog is the appropriate place to request city reports?  Well, apparently you. 

        It is a nonsense post, and you are a fool for lauding it.

        • Mark Schletty May 9, 2020 (6:14 pm)

          Heartless, raising the traffic engineering report in the blog is not nonsense, nor does it make the poster a fool. Street closures in Seattle are not supposed to happen without a traffic engineers study of the need, and open public comment. I thank the poster for the heads up. I have written to the Mayor, Council Member Herbold and Council President Gonzales insisting that a report be properly prepared, including the rationale for closing and with public comment. I have appealed the closing to her, until this requirement is met.I also have raised the issue of an ADA violation, and explained the difficult situation this closure puts seniors and mobility impaired  people  in. And for those of you who say I can access the park as a disabled person,  you are wrong. I was told I had to get off the street by residents , and I have handicapped plates on my car( as were other blog commenters  who were aggressively verbally attacked for being there, claiming the street was completely closed and we/they could not be there). For many reasons this particular closing is totally unacceptable to many of us. Just enforce the law on the miscreants who cause so much trouble, and let the rest of us enjoy the park.

  • RobS May 8, 2020 (8:23 pm)

    As of 8:15, Alki Beach has not been vacated.   No one to report it too (surprising, huh).  As though the bridge debacle isn’t bad enough, it’s the wild west over here.  And not in a good way.

    • WSB May 8, 2020 (8:30 pm)

      We saw six SPD cars/trucks in various spots while there just after 6 pm. Parks employees, too. All gone?

  • Aaron May 8, 2020 (11:29 pm)

    My wife and I drive to that section of Beach drive and park to enjoy the waterfront sunsets and storms. These days there are WAY too many people jogging without masks and crowding the area for me to feel safe actually getting out of the car, so we sit with the windows closed for safety. Closing this street because of a failure of enforcement is BS. I think it would make sense to make it a one way street, as that would take care of most of the traffic and parking problems. Enforcing the noise ordinance and distancing rules would take care of most of the NIMBY complaints too. It is unfortunate and disappointing  that the mayor has decided to create more problems with poorly thought out street closures.

    • Zilla May 9, 2020 (11:22 am)


  • Seriously? May 9, 2020 (7:47 am)

    PSA. I am driving along Beach Drive/Alki Avenue whenever I feel like it. 

    • Cwit May 9, 2020 (12:19 pm)

      So edgy!

      • heartless May 9, 2020 (12:36 pm)

        Real rebel on wheels.

  • Paul Hage May 9, 2020 (2:10 pm)

    I oppose further closure of the road through Constellation Park.  It is one of our favorite locations to enjoy Puget Sound.  We are in our seventies and have limited mobility, so walking in is not an option.  I add my voice to those who believe Seattle Police can affect loud music and reckless driving under existing law.  To anyone who accesses this area frequently – one way traffic seems to be a no brainer.  Most of the other side road closures make some sense and have been vetted for a couple of years.  I attended several of those meetings in the High Point area.  There was no discussion of closure of premium waterfront access.  Closing Constellation Park beyond this weekend is a step too far.  NO!

    • dsa May 9, 2020 (5:58 pm)

      Paul understands what is wrong with this idea and has a simple, obvious solution making it a one way road.

  • macdanny May 10, 2020 (10:26 am)

    I live in the same location on Alki Point where I grew up. That’s 60 plus years here on the Point. I am what you might call, an old-timer. My dad worked for Boeing and looked to buy a home in all the “nice” parts of Seattle, but could not afford it. We ended up here in West Seattle down on Alki. That was way before condos on the beach. I’ve been through 2 major earthquakes (6.4 in 1965 and the  6.8 Nisqually in 2001) not to mention several small ones. I lived through the 2 old West Seattle low-level bridges (2 lanes per bridge: east and westbound), when a freighter creamed into the northern bridge and permanently took it out of commission. I forgot how many years it took to get a new “modern” high-level bridge built and then replace the old surviving low-level bridge. I realize folks want to come to Alki Beach to enjoy all it has to offer. But the endless cruising in loud standard transmission Hondas and such that backfire and stutter when downshifting can get old in a hurry. My dad tried several times to get the Alki Ave. SW  west from 63rd SW to the start of Beach Drive SW south to 63rd SW turned into a one-way street. It’s time to give this some serious thought. Either north to south, or south to north. And since we are going there, why not make the residential streets near the Alki business area alternating one-way streets. That would help the congestion on the narrow streets where only one car can get by at a time. Just a thought from an Alki old-timer.

  • WSB May 10, 2020 (11:05 am)

    Note that the Stay Healthy Street has been expanded to Alki Ave. west of 63rd as of this morning. Separate update to come.

    • Mark Schletty May 10, 2020 (11:33 am)

      Tracy- this is a copy of the letter I sent to the Mayor, CouncilMember Herbold and Council PresidentGonzalez. It doesn’t show the paragraph breaks. I hope others will do the same.  The closing of Constellation Park to the general public is unwarranted and a terrible idea. Has the City’s Traffic Engineer done the required study to justify this closure. If not, I demand that it be done properly before this closure is continued, with all due public input. I am formally appealing this closure to you.This closure of a public Park for the exclusive benefit of private neighboring property owners, and for the exclusive nonresident use by bicycles, is a clear violation of the ADA. It is the unlawful taking of a public park and the converting of the park for the private benefit of the aforementioned.As concerning the ADA violation, this park is the best, if not only, park in West Seattle with direct car access to the edge of our Sound. It has the steps and ramps necessary for mobility impaired people to get to the shoreline without having to walk a long way. I have handicap plates on my car, my wife and I visit this park almost daily to enjoy a lunch in our car and enjoy the sights, smells, and sounds of the water, without endangering ourselves or anyone else.We have noticed a number of other seniors doing the same thing. Losing this unique opportunity, at this time, will very disadvantageously affect our physical and mental health. If this Park remains closed to the public I will file an ADA violation claim against the City.While there are absolutely no rational grounds for limiting this public Park access road to bicycles, there is a real problem for the adjacent residents. The constant behavior of a number of miscreants violating numerous laws and making living there miserable, especially at night and on weekends, is truly disgusting. But the solution for that problem is not to give the residents a private park, but rather to take the handcuffs off of our police and direct them to aggressively enforce the laws being continually violated along Constellation Avenue. You can do the right thing here, and I am requesting that you do so. I would really rather not have to go to the trouble of filling an appeal to the Traffic Engineer and filing an ADA complaint. It is hard enough for us all to get through this time of crisis without you taking away one of the few pleasures available to us now. Sincerely,Mark Schletty

      • Ally May 10, 2020 (1:49 pm)

        Mark, my mom has ada plaques as well and using the area much like you do, she would be happy to work with you on a official,appeal,or contacting civil liberties attorney to file suit that due process was not followed.funny how they can do this so fast but can’t make a decision  on larger issues and get caught up in the Seattle process,  I’d like to file a petition that is this continues all of those benefitting from this have their property value looked atmom   Went down there and people yelled at her it was a private street even with her plaque hanging from the windshield 

  • Paul Hage May 15, 2020 (6:47 pm)

    The following letter sent to Lisa, Mayor Durkan and STDThe current vehicle situation in Constellation Park is unacceptable to those who reside there and to SPD.  The resulting total closure of the road to non-residents is serious over-reach in the minds of we who pay for and enjoy the Park. I am among those opposed to the closure.  I propose the following solution for consideration.A reasonable compromise to this deadlock could be closure to non-resident motor vehicles only during summer weekends when the majority of the problems occur – and access for everyone when the street is calm – that is, most of the time.My wife and I are retired and have driven around Alki regularly for ten years.  We recognize the validity of issues raised by both proponents and opponents of the current temporary closure.  We mostly avoid Alki on summer weekends for the same reasons the proponents want the park road closed.  We revel in the natural wonders at Constellation Park on weekdays when those problems are much reduced.  In the off season we rarely see much traffic other than on days with very stormy weather and high tide.  A “certain days and hours” approach could go a long way toward calming the waters.The residents would then be largely freed from the activity of miscreants, and the citizenry would continue to have use of their beloved park most of the time.

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