Three components to this week’s update on the Delridge road work paving the way for RapidRide H Line:
TREES SAVED: Two weeks ago, we reported on neighbors’ campaign to save the big trees outside Youngstown Cultural Arts Center, after the project team made a late-in-the-plan decision to remove them. SDOT told us that after neighborhood outcry, they were working on design revisions in hopes of saving them – and this week’s project bulletin says they succeeded:
This design change included a lane reduction for vehicles and reducing the size of the planted median. Additionally, we were able to extend the curb next to the trees even further than previously, which is better for tree health. We are not always able to preserve trees on project corridors and have already needed to remove other trees on Delridge Way SW. In all, we are replanting around 150 new trees on the corridor with only 6 planned removals.
TUESDAY UPDATE: Regarding the “lane reduction,” SDOT clarifies in response to our followup question that it’s a lane WIDTH reduction, not a removal of a lane.
DIVERTERS OR STAY HEALTHY STREET? Another late-in-the-process change that drew neighborhood pushback, once revealed, was shelved – but is now back on the table: We reported on this two months ago – a plan for “diverters” at two intersections where the 26th SW greenway crosses, at Brandon and at Genesee. Here’s the flyer neighbors received over the summer:
SDOT told us at the time they had dropped the idea – but now it’s been revived, and SDOT is running a survey right now asking about it (with other alternatives), open through October 14th, and plans an online community meeting Wednesday (October 7th) at 6:30 pm. The survey goes into extensive detail about three options SDOT says are now being considered: #1, the previous diverter plan; #2, a “modified” diverter plan described as “for people driving, 26th Ave SW would be an exit-only street at the intersections of SW Brandon St and SW Genesee St.”; #3, turn 26th between Brandon and Genesee into a “no-through-vehicle-traffic” Stay Healthy Street. The survey link is here; the meeting link is here.
OTHER WORK AHEAD: As for what’s happening on the project right now – remember that SW Oregon is closed east of Delridge this weekend, and there’ll be another closure next Friday through Sunday (October 9-11). Also of note, this week crews will “begin demolishing the roadway between SW Hudson St and Puget Blvd SW on the west side.” The full list of planned work ahead is in this week’s bulletin here.