By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
New speed humps are popping up all over Highland Park, South Delridge, and Riverview. SDOT is building up to six a day, and sent reps to HPAC‘s monthly meeting to talk about Home Zone progress and other Reconnect West Seattle projects meant to tackle bridge-detour cut-through traffic.
SDOT’s Sara Zora and David Burgesser began by announcing the RWS project dashboard – centered on a map – has been updated.
A quarterly report is now out, too – here are the key points:
Here’s the list of prioritized projects in HPAC’s jurisdiction:
The 15th/Roxbury project is actually going to be installed as part of the Metro RapidRide H Line work, timeline not yet set. For the 8th/Roxbury project, they’re collecting data right now; the intersection will have to be rechannelized to get the turn pocket in, and they’re hoping that the crews for that can be aligned with upcoming speed-hump work – perhaps within two months. The Highland Park Home Zone has one line on the list but actually involves 27 projects.
Question: Can more be done to improve flow at 16th/Holden?
At this time, SDOT feels it’s done what it can, Zora said, but then said they’re open to re-evaluating.
Also, it was noted, the 15th/Holden signal seems to be cycling even when there’s no pedestrian waiting to cross. The crossing signal at 16th/Austin isn’t working either.
Zora also announced the West Marginal Way west-side sidewalk work would start the following weekend and might last all four weekends of May. Regarding the contentious discussion of a potential protected bike lane on West Marginal, “we’re not at a decision point yet” – they’ve continued to walk the zone with people on different sides of the issue – but are hoping the decision will be this quarter. The interim signal/crosswalk on West Marginal by the Duwamish Tribe Longhouse is expected to happen in August/September. And they recapped the plan to overhaul the West Marginal/Highland Park Way intersection, announced a month ago:
The construction later this year will be “carefully planned,” Zora promised, with an emphasis on work at night and other off-peak times.
One addition to what’s been announced: Sidewalk beveling will happen in the Home Zones; this is fairly quick work, done by contractors, meant to help people “stay local” by improving sidewalk usability in spots where there’s been “uplift.”
Beveling will be done in business districts in other areas of West Seattle too.
Byrgesser picked it up from there with a Home Zone update, reminding attendees that the HZs are meant to be “more holistic approaches to traffic calming, neighborhood-wide rather than street-by-street. … We’re moving full speed ahead into the construction phase,” starting with the speed humps/speed cushions. (See the maps in this March report.) Crews are working fast and will have much of it done by the end of June. Riverview for starters, north of Holden. West of 16th too. The Dumar speed-radar sign has gone in. Some work on Trenton and Henderson has been done, as well as layout for painted curb bulbs, and design is under way for the speed cushions that are going in on the arterials. (A few of the projects won’t happen before next year including the 12th/Holden crossing signal.)
In the south area, most of the work will happen in the next few weeks. These speed humps are part of the first package going in. “We’re hoping prople are going to start seeing results soon on some of these (speeding, cut-through) issues.”
An attendee wondered if stop signs could be installed where 5th, 6th, and 7th SW meet Cambridge. Burgesser said they are hesitant about adding stop signs because they can lead to faster speeds on the streets that don’t have them. So the answer – probably not.
Question: 9th/Henderson crosswalk? No, they’re installing painted curb bulbs, said Burgesser. They generally don’t install painted crosswalks at all-way stops because drivers are already coming to full stops.
Also brought up – worn-out SCHOOL ZONE paint on roads, near Highland Park Elementary. Burgesser said they’d take that back for maintenance teams to tackle.
Some neighbors asked more specific questions about specific trouble spots. Some areas have a lot going on – 11th/Webster, for example – beyond the Home Zone work; bioswales too. Burgesser promised SDOT would be talking to immediate neighbors to make sure issues are addressed early.
One more note: Area residents will get a mailer soon about all this work.
Also at HPAC’s meeting last Wednesday:
POLICE UPDATE: Southwest Precinct Lt. Chris Johnson said most of their “emphasis patrol” funding will focus on Alki but they also are paying extra attention to the recurring racers on West Marginal. There’s been a decrease because of the West Seattle Bridge closure – but they’re still out there – so if you see/hear racing happening, please call 911. Otherwise, downtown’s been calm so the precinct has not had to lose staff to downtown-protest duty lately.
FIREWORKS BAN: The unincorporated King County ban will take effect next year, after the recent King County Council approval. So this year will likely still be problematic. Last year, it was noted, the Seattle Fire Department was at Westcrest Park telling fireworks users to stop.
HIGHLAND PARK IMPROVEMENT CLUB: Decanted wine event May 22nd, 4-8 pm, with building tours. Livestreamed music events are coming up – watch for the HPIC newsletter.
NEXT MEETING: HPAC meets fourth Wednesdays most months, 7 pm, online until further notice – watch hpacws.org for updates.