Speed bumps at the beach? Precinct commander talks summer plan and more @ Alki Community Council

(WSB photo, Thursday @ Alki)

One day after Seattle Parks announced the start date for early closings at Alki, the beach’s summer plan was the main discussion topic for the Alki Community Council.

Seattle Police Southwest Precinct commander Capt. Martin Rivera was the only guest at the hybrid meeting, held online plus in-person at Alki UCC.

Capt. Rivera said SPD is working on a contract with Parks regarding the early Alki Beach closure (10 pm starting May 27th). Parks covers the cost of two officers to assist at closing time, he said, and SPD provides an additional four officers for an emphasis patrol in the area “when staffing allows.” Starting this week, Alki and other West Seattle “hot spots” will see the extra patrols Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays, possibly also Sundays.

What about traffic enforcement on Alki/Harbor Avenues? Capt. Rivera said SPD and SDOT have been talking about ways to deter speeding and racing via road design, primarily the possible addition of speed bumps. He said so far it’s just a matter of funding – he likes the idea of raised crosswalks but says those are estimated at around $80,000, about eight times the cost of a speed bump. Asked about the potential location, Capt. Rivera suggested “each end” of Alki; data collection was planned to further shape a plan, and he suggested contacting Crime Prevention Coordinator Jennifer Danner if you want to be involved. Could private money be raised to fund speed bumps? one attendee asked. Capt. Rivera wasn’t sure. They’re also in talks regarding the angle-parking area and how that can be reconfigured to minimize problems. “Maybe it needs to go back to lateral parking,” he mused. (Aside: In a discussion of Alki as a regional draw despite the bridge closure, he said he heard “end of July the bridge might be open again.”) Other road issue: Regarding the Alki Point “Keep Moving Street” status, he said they’re just “waiting for the mayor to say yes” to making it permanent. (Later a community member who’s been advocating for permanence mentioned a recent meeting with a mayoral rep.) Someone asked about Parking Enforcement; Capt. Rivera reminded attendees that those officers now work for SDOT. Bike officers? No bike officers, no Community Police Team, “we just have 911 (responding) officers,” he said.

That led into a brief discussion of police staffing: “Every shift is missing five or six bodies,” Rivera said. For those keeping track of personnel, acting Lt. Dave Terry, who had attended many West Seattle community meetings as a shift supervisor, has been promoted to the SPD Audits section. The precinct is now missing 1st and 3rd Watch lieutenants – Lt. Terry had been 3rd, and the 1st watch lieutenant has now been moved to the citywide intradepartmental group dealing with homelessness. He also said the precinct had added three new officers recently but also lost three, so is currently about 15 people below where staffing should be.

The ACC had hoped to have a guest from Seattle Parks but they were a no-show. One more note – Parks is running a survey about the early closing time at Alki (and Golden Gardens) – here’s the link.

NEXT MEETING: Third Thursdays at 7 pm most months – so the next one will be June 16th.

38 Replies to "Speed bumps at the beach? Precinct commander talks summer plan and more @ Alki Community Council"

  • marcus May 20, 2022 (2:14 pm)

    I do not really like speed bumps they are a pain but why does not the city install cameras activated by speed or common radar.  Get the license plate and go through the process of a warrent for arrest or heavy fined ticket.  Get these guys because you know they are going to hurt someone eventually.   Police presence may just creat a high speed chase which is also not good, these guys will run over a elderly person or child to get away.  Seen them in the afternoon swerving to avoid people and cars and they race around dawamish head.  No reason for allowing this with the technology we have today.

    • CarDriver May 20, 2022 (4:45 pm)

      Marcus. WOW just WOW. A warrant for arrest for speeding?? Courts are already clogged. Please name the crimes that this would take precedence over?? The practical reason your plan would be nixed in a heartbeat is that not a single driver is perfect all the time-you included.  Doubt you want to be charged you only want those “other” drivers charged.

      • Marcus May 20, 2022 (6:04 pm)

        Cardriver, apparently you have never had to slam on you brakes to avoid two of those speed racers driving at least 60mph to avoid a t-bone that would surely would have put me near death.  These speed racers are just as dangerous as the people who love to fire their guns here in WS. Gosh wow, do you not realize the danger to the public that these people can cause.  Your call sign says it all.  

        • CarDriver May 21, 2022 (6:28 am)

          Marcus. Nope-never had to slam on my brakes to avoid “racers”.  I have had to slam on my brakes to avoid cell phone talkers and people not realizing their mirrors are there for a reason.  Never been in an accident either. Been driving for 50 years now.  My secret? I pay attention behind the wheel. What a novelty!!! I have seen LOTS of bad drivers over the years. They all seem to have the same attitude that they aren’t a problem it’s “those other bad drivers”

      • Mike May 20, 2022 (7:15 pm)

        Yeah maybe if you haven’t seen the single car accidents yeah there very dangerous so yeah I’m for it and the death penalty for murder!!!!!!

        • CarDriver May 21, 2022 (6:32 am)

          Mike. The accidents I’ve seen in my 50 years of driving had NOTHING to do with racing and EVERYTHING to do with not paying attention. If you want to jail the “speeders” then I’m sure you’d want to jail the cell phone talkers and the simply not paying attention drivers, right?

      • Julian May 22, 2022 (3:24 pm)

        So do you think these hooligans and scofflaws should go unpunished? I hate speed bumps but I also hate the people who engage in this kind of behavior.  Seattle doesn’t really enforce any kind of moving violations so not really sure of any other way to curb the behavior other than something like speed bumps

    • KBear May 20, 2022 (6:43 pm)

      Unfortunately, use of traffic cameras is severely limited by state law. My guess is lawmakers like car drivers like to remain above the law. 

      • CarDriver May 20, 2022 (8:43 pm)

        KBEAR. Name the traffic law(s) you’ve NEVER broken. 

  • Mike May 20, 2022 (2:18 pm)

    Just install temporary rubber speed bumps that bolt into pavement. This is done on east coast – they are installed spring and removed in fall to reduce speed at the beach . Simple and cost effective 

    • AlkiDeadEnder May 22, 2022 (5:36 pm)

      Mike, you are making TOO MUCH SENSE and confusing those that have nothing better to do than gripe. PLEASE, make sure to forward that idea to our SW Precinct Commander Capt. Martin Rivera. In my mind there’d need to be one every 0.2 miles, as quarter mile racing is still a thing, and the flat route is about 3.5 miles. I’d think the more expensive thing would be signage, and labor installing and de-installing. I’d donate money to that plan.

  • StopCuttingDownTrees May 20, 2022 (3:09 pm)

    Speed bumps would be terrible but a couple raised crosswalks like on California Ave in the Junction would be ideal.

    • CarDriver May 20, 2022 (4:14 pm)

      Just wait until speed racer decides the raised part might work as a jump if they’re going fast enough. 

    • Scubafrog May 20, 2022 (6:01 pm)

      I agree with raised crosswalks, that’s good idea.

  • Jay May 20, 2022 (3:40 pm)

    Speed bumps would work well because the worst offenders have lowered cars and huge straight-pipe exhaust mods hanging down to the pavement. 4″ speed bumps would keep them off of Alki.

    • Buttercup May 20, 2022 (9:19 pm)

      Well said, speed bumps, raised crosswalks all good. Will keep these problems away

    • CheeseWS777 May 21, 2022 (1:25 am)

      So now lowered cars is a problem. I thought this was about speeding

  • Alex May 20, 2022 (4:24 pm)

    Speeders turn to the residential streets when deterrents are placed on arterials.    Unfortunately, SDOT does not consider residential streets part of their program.   You have to go through a long process and then get your block to pay for a speed hump.    It’s rather embittering.   

    • Auntie May 20, 2022 (5:32 pm)

      There are no side streets between California Way and Bonair Dr – so speed bumps between those two intersections would not divert traffic anywhere. It would just discourage the bad actors. Then, raised crosswalks past Bonair would further annoy the annoyers.

      • Alkilocal May 20, 2022 (10:01 pm)

        Yes, Auntie. Can we talk about funding this plan? It’s brilliant. Next council/community meeting?    The only gap is having burn outs and donuts between the full width raised bumps. 

        • Auntie May 21, 2022 (10:56 am)

          I realize there is no funding for any of this. Just responding mostly to the “diverting to side streets” comment. Not sure anything will deter the knuckleheads who are determined to wreck it for the rest of us.

  • WS Resident May 20, 2022 (5:00 pm)

    Yeah. Put down speed bumps. If you want to slow people down there’s the solution. That said they would need to be full width, as any bike will go between the bumps and they would need to be an actual bump, as you can roll right over the ones on Beach drive at 40mph. If the city is serious about slowing things down, do it- all the way around Harbor Ave to Alki

    • Mike May 20, 2022 (7:17 pm)

      AMEN everywhere on Harbor 

  • Morgan May 20, 2022 (6:25 pm)

    Given all the pedestrians one or two raised crosswalk intersections, cost of $640k each, would be an improvement in traffic flow and safety…especially at peak hours. Then I also like the temp seasonal rubber cross walks for other stretches.

  • CarDriver May 20, 2022 (6:47 pm)

    Speed bumps would also slow down the response of emergency vehicles. Everyone ok with that? As a morning walker on Alki Ave the speeders i see zoom by aren’t kids but appear to be residents that can’t leave for work earlier.

  • Justme May 20, 2022 (9:01 pm)

    I agree with the concern for emergency response vehicles. Speed bumps would be a challenge and could slow down a person needing a fast trip to the ER. Wouldn’t ticket cameras be enough? Like school zones use.

  • Ban em May 20, 2022 (11:39 pm)

    Ban cars. Whatever it takes to deter cars on Alki, make it happen. Cars ruin Alki for me, just frightening.

  • Marcus May 21, 2022 (6:06 am)

    If we cannot have speed cameras then put in the speed bumps and elevated crosswalks.  I am willing to live with them.

  • Eric May 21, 2022 (6:50 am)

    I would gladly chip in for some speedbumps, but I’ve heard from reputable local leaders that busses cannot/will not go over them.  Can this be verified? I’m all for taking logical steps to keep the speeders slowed down.

    • Kathy May 21, 2022 (4:36 pm)

      What buses? The only buses I see on Harbor Ave/Alki must be there for training purposes since bus service has been cancelled (“suspended”) from 61st Ave SW all the way to Spokane Street. I am all in favor of banning those training runs in this area since they are not providing the service we need.  Let them train on someone else’s streets.

  • Runner May 21, 2022 (8:11 am)

    As someone that lives on Alki Ave, when there is a police car with an officer in it, parked along the street, everything is better.  The cars and motorcycles slow down, the drivers with the loud exhaust pipes quit revving their vehicles, and the cars and motorcycles playing their music loud enough to be heard blocks away turn it down.  The police presence makes a significant difference to the behavior of the drivers, that’s a simple fact.  

  • mark mulligan May 21, 2022 (12:50 pm)

    Seattle appears to have three kinds of streets: those with speed bumps, those with so many potholes that speed bumps are not necessary, and those with both. This includes brand new, fully repaved streets immediately cut across with trenches and swiss cheesed with repair pits (Delridge anyone?), none properly patched so more potholes, or should it  be more speed bumps, or both?I have a final solution for the problem of everyone driving too fast. Make us drive in reverse all the time. That would fix it.Note: running someone over is my panic attack while I drive. I don’t like to drive. Also note, now that the Alaskan Way Viaduct is gone, Alki is pretty much the only relaxing SouthSide drive worth the bother.

  • KT May 21, 2022 (2:56 pm)

    Now let’s see ….. “SPD provides an additional four officers for an emphasis patrol in the area “when staffing allows”” and “Every shift is missing five or six bodies” and “the precinct had added three new officers recently but also lost three, so is currently about 15 people below where staffing should be”.  So much for the emphasis patrol the Captain talked of.  Been the same since we moved here in 2003.  

  • JimBob Furgeson May 21, 2022 (3:43 pm)

    No fun allowed. Won’t someone think of the rich 70 year olds who want to sit in complete silence on their beach front villas? Let people have fun, it’s 3 months a year of good weather in this city. 

    • Julian May 22, 2022 (3:32 pm)

      I wish people would stop acting like this is a valid argument.  First off, what beach front villas are you referring to hah?  Nothing like that along the main part of Alki beach or even along the north point.  Secondly, there are plenty of people who live either in Alki Ave or directly off of it that rent too. Thirdly, regardless of where people live or don’t, they are entitled to an opinion about dangerous and illegal behavior occurring in places they frequent…

  • Joel May 21, 2022 (6:01 pm)

    If they’d really like to make the beach nice, the police will bring some decibel meters down there, and start giving tickets to every over-loud motorcycle or over loud jacked-up truck or street racer with a missing muffler.Or better yet just set up a traffic camera to do it, complete with microphone and decibel meter… Automatic tickets for being a jerk

  • Burgerman May 21, 2022 (11:24 pm)

    Already witnessed threats to kill somebody over being asked not to violate business rules and Liquor Control Board laws stating no alcohol in open containers be taken off the premises. I also noticed two bike officers at a baseball game at Whale Tail park, one was astride his bike engaging some kids, another was playing or practicing with the kids. Might have been their kids? Dunno.The police better get focused on regular Alki patrols, AND ENFORCEMENT, fast, or we’re going to see more shootings this summer.

  • AlkiDeadEnder May 22, 2022 (5:43 pm)

    I hated the idea of ‘traffic calming’. Rainier Ave. is a bit extreme, but was an early test case. The speed limit went from 40 to 25. 4+ lanes to 2 parking lanes, a lane each way and a center turn lane. I hated it.A friend has a business and told me that almost every week there was an auto vs. pedestrian accident that required an Ambulance. And, every month hosted an auto vs. building event. At 6 months after the ‘traffic calming’ they hadn’t heard the ambulance once, and zero autos colliding with buildings.I like the idea of removeable thick rubber speed bumps, staggered, every 0.2 miles which would probably allow them to NOT change traffic on the Lighthouse Point, and the budget for changing our street into a pedestrian mall (but magically allow residents access to their driveways).It might even help reduce accidents. Those low riding racers doing donuts at 59th and Alki are likely to hurt someone, at the worst time to get EMT staff down those streets.I hope this is in our budget minded future before the bridge opens.

Sorry, comment time is over.