‘Healthy Streets’ weren’t supposed to remove parking. Alki Point will. Wildlife advocates have a problem with that.

(Updated photo: Constellation Park section of Alki Point Healthy Street, today)

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

Two local wildlife advocacy organizations say the final design for the Alki Point “Healthy Street” – Beach Drive and Alki Avenue from 63rd to Alki Point – is an impediment to their work and the wildlife and people who benefit from it, as well as to Constellation Park visitors.

After what they say was a fruitless appeal directly to SDOT, Seal Sitters Marine Mammal Stranding Network and The Whale Trail are taking their case to the mayor and asking for community support in a new campaign they’re calling “Alki Point for All,” with an online petition. Both groups have historically used Constellation Park, along the Beach Drive section, extensively, Seal Sitters for responding to beached, sick, and/or dead marine mammals, The Whale Trail for assisting land-based viewing when orcas are in the area.

While the “Healthy Street” designation has been on the stretch for almost four years, what’s new is the final design, reported here in December, removing more than 60 on-street parking spaces, mostly to add a 10-foot-wide “walking/rolling lane” adjacent to the waterfront sidewalk. That was a major change from the design proposal on which SDOT gathered feedback a year earlier, which did not include major parking removal. Regarding their challenge now, the Alki Point for All coalition explains:

An SDOT representative has informed our organizations that SDOT will not be reconsidering our request to keep the existing beach-side parking spaces around Alki Point as well as the public vehicle access. … We are disappointed by this decision since it not only impacts our organizations but many others who come to these parks and rely on the existing parking configuration.

We have asked to meet with the Healthy Street project manager, but that meeting has not yet been scheduled by SDOT.

Our coalition met with Councilmember Rob Saka and his staff regarding this matter. In addition, we sent a letter to Mayor Bruce Harrell appealing this decision and asking that his office review the SDOT decision to designate Alki Point as a “Healthy Street” with very restrictive public access as well as removing sixty-seven beach side parking spaces around Alki Point.

We have established an online petition to allow the broader Seattle community to respond to the negative impacts this decision will have on public access to a premiere marine reserve and the city park. We invite West Seattle and the wider community to join us in voicing their concerns and join our campaign Alki Point For All!

The coalition points to this excerpt from SDOT’s most recent FAQ document regarding the Healthy Streets program:

(The question “Will the permanent Healthy Street take away parking spaces on my street?” is answered “No, permanent Healthy Streets will not remove any legal street parking spaces.”) What became “Healthy Streets” were originally announced in the early pandemic days as places where more people could walk, run, roll, etc. while safely “social distancing,” but were kept in place even after the pandemic ebbed. The Beach Drive section of Alki Point, however, was also an undeniable solution to a long-running problem about which nearby residents had complained for years – recklessness and noise related to driver gatherings – as acknowledged by police in 2020.

153 Replies to "'Healthy Streets' weren't supposed to remove parking. Alki Point will. Wildlife advocates have a problem with that."

  • Meeeee February 29, 2024 (12:02 pm)

    SDOT: reneging on promises since Seattle streets were paved

  • Pete February 29, 2024 (12:15 pm)

    I’m really struggling with what the point of all this is. It’s absolutely fine as is. There are so many other places this time, money, and resources could be better spent on. I live walking distance away (not a rich homehomer before anyone jumps in) I cycle or walk there with my 6 year old almost every day, I don’t think I’ve ever had any trouble with cars there. There’s the odd kid smoking weed or enjoying a beer. Honestly… who is driving this? It’s totally fine as it is. I dunno, maybe stick in a couple of extra park benches. Just seems like a massive waste of time.

    • Vee February 29, 2024 (3:48 pm)

      Agree completely, not needed, biggest waste of money that could go elsewhere on needed road work, get this  stopped

    • JP February 29, 2024 (9:49 pm)

      Completely agree – what a waste of precious time, energy, and money. But just scroll the comments and you can see how unhinged some of our neighbors have become. “Climate arson”, “Ableist”, “War on Cars”…. Good grief.

    • Gary March 1, 2024 (12:55 pm)

      I lived here from 1971 to 2004 and my parents are still living there.I can acknowledge with over 50 years of perspective that there is no parking issue the way it was.

    • Barb S-L March 2, 2024 (9:35 am)

      Or an odd senior smoking weed!  Agree completely, it works marvelously, cars that drive by and park and very respectful.  I  love that stretch of beach!

  • Pete February 29, 2024 (12:16 pm)

    Seems like the privileged few who own homes along this stretch are the ones that really benefit. This is a public street that all tax players support and should have the freedom to use without restricting the ability to park and enjoy.  

    • Nancy Hansen March 7, 2024 (10:28 am)

      Pete I agree Those homeowners are being given private waterfrontMy mother in law owned a small house there but property taxes forced her to sell to a very rich person I am handicapped and you’ll notice that there is one handicap space in the picture yet I have had a homeowner there come out of her house to yell at me that I could not park there that it is private

  • Kyle February 29, 2024 (12:21 pm)

    Hear hear! Can’t afford to live within walking distance of this park so removing parking reduces access. Bus service is sparse for this area. SDOT listened only to neighbors upset about car clubs.

    • Max March 1, 2024 (9:26 pm)

      Then advocate for more bus service. There’s too much pavement and bus service is vital anyway.

      • Kyle March 3, 2024 (1:07 pm)

        Sounds great, in the meantime let’s not remove parking access.

  • Rocky Bullwinkle February 29, 2024 (12:26 pm)

    City can give registered seal sitters a special parking pass for when they need to sit seals. Or, seal sitters can just park around the corner on 63rd and walk 1 block to the water. Walking is good for one’s health, so win-win.

    • WSB February 29, 2024 (12:39 pm)

      It’s not that simple, they say. Here’s an excerpt from the Seal Sitters’ previous letter to SDOT (I’ll add a link to the letter above):

      We need to be able to park our vehicles as close as possible to the water side of the street to off-load equipment, set up a perimeter if required, and maintain full-time access to our vehicles for safety and shelter in adverse weather. First Responders commit to a 12-hour shift and depending on the situation, may need all this time. Also, if the animal remains on the beach for an extended period, our on-the-beach volunteers are called to do 2-hour shifts monitoring the animals’ condition and educating the public. They need to be able to park close to the response. These same issues were raised with SDOT back in September 2020 and we received confirmation that this access would continue to be granted.

      • come on February 29, 2024 (11:10 pm)

        This is so Seattle it’s sick. A seal advocate needs curbside access, which is fine and great. Instead of just asking for minimally necessary curbside access like productive normal communicative friendly people, they’re undermining a thoughtful plan to make the beach nicer for pedestrians and families. This is a great example of why Seattle can’t have nice things. There’s always some loudmouth to force their obscure passion between the tired city we have and the vibrant city we keep voting to build. Pickleball, seals, tree canopy, single family housing. It’s incredibly easy to undermine the will of the voting majority with any number of gimmicks from the urban goretex playbook. 

        • CarDriver March 1, 2024 (7:03 am)

          Come on. Your comment reads like your complaining. Still scratching my head as to what exactly your point is.

        • Sean March 1, 2024 (8:04 am)

          They did ask nicely.They were ignored. What would you have them do?

        • WS-Suz March 1, 2024 (11:52 am)

          Nobody “voted”.  There was a survey which made no mention of removing parking/access.   Similarly, nobody voted to have the nearby bus stop removed.  When these things happen, what do you expect citizens to do?The affected groups requested meetings with SDOT, reviewed SDOT’s own Healthy Street policies & are now asking for the public to be aware of the impact of proposed changes that seem to be a “solution “ to a non- problem.What do you suggest?

    • Beth Bakeman February 29, 2024 (1:10 pm)

      Very ableist comments, Rocky! Not everyone can walk easily (or at all) from farther away to watch wildlife and enjoy the beauty of the beach.I can’t think of anyone who would want that access removed!

      • DC February 29, 2024 (1:34 pm)

        The plan includes new ADA parking. Sorry, can’t use that excuse here.  And I want it removed, so now you can think of someone! 

        • Erithan February 29, 2024 (6:30 pm)

          That doesn’t help people who have mobility issues, but can’t get a placard. There’s usually very few put in too.

    • JM February 29, 2024 (1:12 pm)

      Ableist much? WOW! 

      • acorn national standard March 1, 2024 (8:50 am)

        40 percent of people with disabilities cannot drive but can walk, bike, or use other means for mobility. There are many types of disabilities. 

    • Bill March 1, 2024 (1:53 am)

      Hurrah – so it’s entirely “healthy” logic to prohibit car access for rich homeowners in this area!! Win-win. 

  • DC February 29, 2024 (12:33 pm)

    Unbelievable. ‘Wildlife advocates’ advocating climate arson so they can get a few steps closer. Cars, the biggest contributor to carbon emissions,  are apparently more important than the animals the ostensibly represent. 

    • Jay February 29, 2024 (12:56 pm)

      How will denying the general public access to the tidepool area and all the educational events that take place there advance climate goals? This is not a walkable or transit friendly area. Maybe the investment would be better spent improving access? Maybe a shuttle bus? It’s also an excellent opportunity for families to drive a few miles for the tidepools rather than several times the distance to the aquarium.

      • Lot February 29, 2024 (4:35 pm)

        It’s not denying public access to anyone, including those who drive there. Looking at aerial imagery from the past 20 years, that portion of Beach Dr SW is nowhere near parking capacity. The on-street parking that remains on Alki Ave SW, on 64th Ave SW, on Benton Pl SW, and on Beach Dr SW south of 64th Ave SW will likely be sufficient. Those that are unable to walk the additional 1/8 mile will still have ADA parking spaces available.

        I agree that better bus service in the area would be nice.

    • CarDriver February 29, 2024 (2:26 pm)

      DC. Yes, we all really do own and use cars. It’s the real world we live in. Real conversations can’t occur with deniers pretending to not own/use/ get deliveries from someone driving cars.

      • walkerws February 29, 2024 (2:52 pm)

        We *all* don’t really.

        • CarDriver February 29, 2024 (4:17 pm)

          walkerws. So, you don’t own a car, or rent, or use rideshare/taxi or ride with someone ? You don’t order anything online and have delivered??

          • anonyme March 1, 2024 (5:09 am)

            I think WalkerWS was responding specifically to the statement “Yes, we all really do own and use cars” rather than the entire post.  Speaking for myself, I have never owned a car and do not use taxi, ride, or delivery services (other than the usual UPS, etc.).  Bus or walking only.  I don’t think anyone is suggesting that every mode of transportation on the planet be eliminated, but the fact is that a personal vehicle is more often than not unnecessary, especially in dense urban areas.

    • Blbl February 29, 2024 (5:16 pm)

      This won’t result in fewer cars, it will just result in those cars driving around in circles looking for a nonexistent parking space. 

    • Wseattlite February 29, 2024 (5:37 pm)

      What is your agenda DC?  What “problem” is removing the parking solving?  Climate change?  That is laughable.  Why do you want parking removed?  

      • Walkerws February 29, 2024 (9:54 pm)

        It’s more pleasant to enjoy the space with fewer or no cars. Cars are unpleasant. Removing them solves that problem. 

        • Cam March 1, 2024 (10:57 am)

          Removing a few parking spaces on a road that is already closed to thru traffic doesn’t remove any cars, it just pushes them to worse and worse locations for the drivers and neighborhood.

          • 937 March 1, 2024 (12:06 pm)

            It is not (at all) “closed”. (Invalid) signage may say it is. But it is most definitely NOT closed. I use it WITH MY CAR at least 3x a week.

        • Wseattleite March 1, 2024 (4:46 pm)

          Aha!  So basically the space is more pleasant if people who cannot walk there are not there.  What a protectionist, arrogant, and entitled view.  Less for them, more for me!  You should be ashamed.  

  • Pinto February 29, 2024 (12:40 pm)

    There’s perfectly good sidewalk on either side and also walkway down below along the water. I’ve never seen it so crowded that I had to step off the sidewalk. Not sure what the purpose of taking away parking is. healthy streets are a joke because people soon learned that streets are not closed and you can park there. They should just return everything to the way it was – use the money for real safety issues such as shooting guns and racing at Alki.

    • Bill February 29, 2024 (2:28 pm)

      Seattle – Healthy Streets?  — Maybe they should concentrate some effort downtown!

    • walkerws February 29, 2024 (2:52 pm)

      The purpose of taking away parking is to make it a more pleasant space for everyone!

      • Alf March 1, 2024 (3:41 pm)

        But it doesn’t for everyone, I have sent email to Rob cc, to request information that the homes along this private enclave be reevaluated for property taxes, additional I have a handicapped plaque and will drive thru and park anytime I want,  my taxes pay for this road, 

        • Kathy March 3, 2024 (10:04 am)

          This whole thing disappoints me. I understand the original need given Covid restrictions back then. But those days are past; let’s be reasonable about real current usage from the public that doesn’t live within a couple of blocks. I am often there with my dog. I am almost always there when the whales come. Constellation enables seeing them even when they don’t come further south. I have never seen it crowded with walkers. Even when there are lots of cars, it doesn’t feel crowded. Whale folks park there when the whales are there. I think one of the more wonderful sights is the super friendly group who come there to watch the whales. Families. Everyone. We all know there is no parking on Alki. Nor on surrounding streets. How often can you drive to Alki and simply park? So. Please. Just stop with that. Lots of us who go there to see the marvelous orca have heavy camera stuff. Or small kids. And honestly we don’t stay all that long. This really does smell of a small group of homeowners trying to keep the rest of us out. And this would definitely increase their property values. So. Hey. How about they pay a subsidy to live there? And seriously. If they want to spend taxpayer money to help a handful of people, why not spend it on other infrastructure? Or. I don’t know. Raise salaries or benefits to their employees. I hadn’t thought of WS as a place where money enables one to mess up public places for the rest of us. (And yes the dreaded PB slated for LP is another). It’s bad enough that owning the beach is allowed (not in CA nor Hi for example). We live in one of the most beautiful places in the country. Orca viewing is unique to this area. I will sign or show up for public comment if there is an opportunity to voice leaving it as is. I can imagine most people would like continued access. I can’t  imagine how many would show up for total blockage. 

    • dolly alderton February 29, 2024 (8:39 pm)

      People on bicycles and children learning to ride scooters often avoid the sidewalk for these activities. They require dedicated paths to travel safely. I’ve observed a woman in an electric wheelchair attempting to navigate the street between a moving truck and a parked car. Implementing healthy streets could address racing issues, and designated safe bike lanes could increase drivers’ awareness, prompting them to slow down. We want to see more children riding their bikes and learning to scooter in bike lanes that are safe for them.

      • SD March 1, 2024 (7:48 am)

        Don’t forget skateboarders, and roller skaters. Let’s encourage these citizens to use the 10 foot wide sidewalk.

      • Pinto March 1, 2024 (1:40 pm)

        That is a fair point. However, there are so many other places to go without any cars at all, such as the massive concrete playgrounds at Lafayette and Schmitz Park Elementary, for learning to scooter and bicycle riding. And of course the massively popular skate park with features designed by skateboarders – and I forgot about Lincoln Park, if you want to ride by the water without any cars. 

  • Remove Food Huts Too! February 29, 2024 (12:48 pm)

    Classic government overreach, and I applaud this effort to push back against what amounts to a land grab of sorts. I agree that some level of change was necessary; the weekend “car groups” that were using that stretch of road for cruising and organized vagrancy (stereos often blasting) must have been a nightmare for homeowners. But this goes way too far, and as a senior aged fisherman who likes to fish off that point in the fall, it greatly hampers my access. And let’s face it, Covid was used as cover for a lot of  wrong thinking still on display today and apparently sanctioned by our current Council. I’m specifically talking about the eye sore “food huts” taking up valuable parking in front of Taliricos and Easy St on CA, plus side streets. As if it was ever any safer to eat “outside” under covered structures to begin with, but I’ll not go down that embarrassing path any farther. Hey Saka and Council: newsflash, Covid ended well over a year ago, if not two. Can we get our parking back that our taxes paid for, please? Or would you prefer a car slams into diners during an accident before you make a change? I’m amazed it’s not already happened, honestly. It’s time to hold the SDOT and the City accountable to smarter thinking and more equitable uses of our public streets and parking places. 

    • walkerws February 29, 2024 (2:54 pm)

      “Food huts” are a much better use of public space than providing subsidized parking for cars. We should have more of them, and also permanently close California Ave between Edmunds and Oregon to car traffic in order to maximize the use of our public spaces.

    • Brian February 29, 2024 (6:09 pm)

      This reads vaguely like a threat. Strange times. Also: COVID didn’t go away lol

    • aa March 2, 2024 (8:22 pm)

      I am so tired of the republican outcry against government overreach while at the same time overreaching into the wombs of women all over this country. Sick of this whole mess we are all living in.  Sick of all the arguing, sick of everyone taking sides,  from sidewalks to the president of our country, people are always fighting. sigh

  • 937 February 29, 2024 (12:50 pm)

    Our taxes fund this roadway and associated parking. This, like all other “Healthy Street” government over reaches, are open to public use. I will continue to use them as such.

    I would relish the opportunity to get a ticket to enact a Court challenge against this nonsense.

    It is – and will remain – a public right of way.

    • dayton February 29, 2024 (2:52 pm)

      “my taxes pay for the parks so I’ll drive my damn car through the volleyball court whenever I want.  get out of the way kids!”

      • 937 February 29, 2024 (4:34 pm)

        Dear lord… The hyperbole is ramped up to 12! I didn’t even know a pejorative called “ableist” even existed until today. This is crazy town.

        And now someone comparing driving legally on a public road is akin to driving OFF road IN A PARK or through a “volleyball court”. Cause they’re EXACTLY the same thing.

        SMDH – it is getting ridiculous around these parts!

        • Danimal March 1, 2024 (3:32 pm)

          937, the fact that you’ve never heard the very common term “ableist” explains everything about why you’re a Trumper. I’m happy for you that you learned something from coming to the blog though. I find it curious you live in Seattle. How can you stand living among all these liberals?

  • Actually Mike February 29, 2024 (12:51 pm)

    All part of the city’s War on Cars.

    • Jay February 29, 2024 (12:58 pm)

      It’s not a war on cars. The traffic body count rises each year. It’s a war against the working class using cars. The rich people living here will have access to Constellation Park, but the dirty poors will have to keep away or hoof it from street parking half a mile away.

    • walkerws February 29, 2024 (2:56 pm)

      What we have is not a “war on cars.” I wish we had a war on cars, but what we have isn’t even 1% of that.

  • Alki for All February 29, 2024 (12:59 pm)

    Seems the people who live there and want special treatment that other steeets don’t get, should probably just join together and buy the land from the city. That way if I can’t park or drive there I don’t need to pay for upkeep. It seems if you want to live in a gated community you should have bought a house in one. 

    • Herongrrrl February 29, 2024 (4:10 pm)

      Exactly this. 

    • 937 February 29, 2024 (8:25 pm)

      Why “buy” it when the city will give it to you…for FREE??

      Elections have consequences people.

  • wsres February 29, 2024 (1:16 pm)

    I bet there is a homeowner on that street with ties to SDOT that is getting a favor. That is a wide street with plenty of room for cars to park. They just don’t want to be part of Alki area parking in the Summertime.

    • walkerws February 29, 2024 (2:59 pm)

      So what if it’s a wide street with plenty of room for cars to park. It’s a nicer place for those walking, running, cycling, skating, or using a wheelchair if the cars aren’t there!

  • Rhonda February 29, 2024 (1:16 pm)

    I’m PARKED here right now. I’m not seal-sitting but I’m lighthouse-watching, beach-combing, and Rueben sandwich-eating. I’ve been nursing an injured knee lately and there’s no way I could’ve walked a few blocks without severe pain. Most people with mobility issues (temporary or permanent) don’t have disabled parking placards. We shouldn’t need them to parallel park on public streets like this with hundreds of yards of curb.

    • JP February 29, 2024 (9:52 pm)

      Where did you get the Reuben? 

      • 937 March 1, 2024 (12:11 pm)

        Here’s someone asking the real question!

      • Rhonda March 1, 2024 (2:35 pm)

        Easy Street Records.

        • johnny March 1, 2024 (11:45 pm)

          Where did you park to go to Easy Street Rhonda?

          • Rhonda March 2, 2024 (7:08 pm)

            johnny, I parked closer to Easy Street Records than the walking distance from where I park at Alki to the sand/rocks/seaweed on the beach.

        • JP March 1, 2024 (11:57 pm)

          Ahh I haven’t had the Reuben from Easy Street yet. Been searching for the best one in West Seattle since West 5. 

    • Francis Parkman March 1, 2024 (10:48 am)

      Yet you can beachcomb just fine on the gravel and rocks with your injured knee. Sure thing, Rhonda! Maybe the city should pave a driveway down to the waterline just for you, so you can eat your Reuben without being inconvenienced. 

  • The Lorax February 29, 2024 (1:23 pm)

    Good. We have plenty of free parking already in this city. With only 425,000 vehicles registered and 1.6 million parking spaces overall, of which 500,000 on street free spaces are available, surely we can get over this and stop complaining to actual elected officials who have bigger things to work on besides sitting down with 3 busy bodies to discuss 20 parking spaces on Alki Beach.

    • Pete February 29, 2024 (2:45 pm)

      It’s just more money chucked up the wall though that could be better spent improving cycle lanes or actually having decent public transport to Alki. I’m absolutely in favour of pedestrianising and expanding cycle paths etc, I’m just stunned that this little strip where there is barely any car traffic at all has suddenly become a priority. I’d love to know which well connected person lives on that strip.

    • Alki resident February 29, 2024 (2:47 pm)

      So since you’re bringing up Alki beach it’s clear you missed the part where this is on Beach Drive not Alki. This patch of road has never had issues with cars or accidents much less. This is a land grab for the residents benefit. There’s tons of sidewalk for people to safely pass each other by and there’s hundreds of people each week how temporarily pull over to watch the waves, the mountains, the weather, the people, the view and maybe have a quick bite of food and drive off. Many people don’t have time to park elsewhere and walk to the strip. Some are disabled or recovering from something and don’t need to leave their cars. There shouldn’t even be a discussion about this strip. It’s quiet and friendly and safe, period. My friend literally lives at the end of the street for 30 yrs and can’t believe they want to change it up. Absolutely zero reason. 

      • Grew up in good old WS February 29, 2024 (6:04 pm)

        To be fair, it is Alki point.  

      • Butch February 29, 2024 (6:36 pm)

        Strongly agree this little section of the viewpoint that faces the south. Is a clean cared for tranquil setting away from the Sandy beach. It has always been the spot to take a quick meal from spuds or any place along the waterfront. Medical reasons low immunity keeps us out of mingling with others . res of west seattle 65 years

  • Matt Hutchins February 29, 2024 (1:27 pm)

    OMG YES, get rid of the parking!  

  • Erik February 29, 2024 (1:36 pm)

    Welp, when you have wildlife advocates complaining about removing parking spaces you know it’s a waste of money. Hopefully they realize how much of a waste of public funds this is and cancel the project. Not sure what the DOT has been doing lately. Lots of wasteful decisions.

    • Bill February 29, 2024 (2:34 pm)

      They have legitimate reasons for the parking spaces — fully explained in previous comments

  • Lucy February 29, 2024 (1:41 pm)

    I also live within (long) walking distance of both Alki beach and Beach Dr.  I would like to see Beach Dr go back to what it was before the pandemic.  Everyone should have access.  However, there also needs to be more police presence in the evenings and nights when the cars are obnoxiously loud and the drag racing starts.  Our beaches are for everyone.

    • walkerws February 29, 2024 (3:03 pm)

      I would love to see all property on the west side of Beach Drive seized by eminent domain and converted to a megapark that spans from Alki to Lincoln Park, but in the absence of that dream I’ll take a car-free Constellation park as a consolation prize.

  • Duncan February 29, 2024 (2:41 pm)

    See, this is why we can’t have nice things in Seattle. It’s a plan to partially pedestrianise what is essentially a promenade by an ecologically interesting beach, and environmentalists are opposed because that means they will have to park their carbon-emission spewing automobiles a full half-a-kilometer away from the tide pools instead of right on top of them. Utter insanity.

    • Gary March 1, 2024 (1:26 pm)

      EV’s will also be prohibited from enjoying the strip also.

  • Trekprn February 29, 2024 (2:56 pm)

    Amazing! From 2015-2021 I lived/worked in Seattle (in the city) at least 90 days a year. I appreciated being able to get my senior body anywhere in the city. I rarely drove. I was in awe of how people of all shapes, ages, and sizes got around on foot, on their bike, and using transit. What particularly impressed me was the long pilgrimage to Gas Works Park to watch the Fourth of July fireworks. People walked incredible distances with their kids, wagons, coolers, and more. I was reminded of a family reunion in an urban area where my 80-something mother-in-law was able to see the sights with us. Between each attraction we wheeled her in a wheelchair and when we arrived she got up and went about appreciating where we were. There is no need to drive and park to exactly where one needs to go. With planning, we can all make it happen. 

  • Leo Shaw February 29, 2024 (3:09 pm)

    Constellation Marine Reserve is the Parks Dept most visited Marine Reserve in the city.  Thousands of people from the city and other areas of Washington State and other parts of the U.S. and other nations visit Constellation Marine Reserve every year.  The Seattle Aquarium Beach Naturalist program provides naturalists on low tide days and nights to explain the world of intertidal life to anyone with an interest.  The Naturalists will have no parking to offload their materials needed for their job.  In addition school groups in large numbers visit the beach via school bus every spring for low tide exploration and education.  The busses (as many as 19 per low tide day) are parked on the area that will be without parking if the SDOT plan is implemented.  Just where these busses will be parked now if a mystery to me and any student that is cold, sick, or injured on the beach will no longer have the refuge of the bus to return to.   During inclement weather people drive to Constellation just to watch the weather, waves and wonder of nature.  This is best observed from the water side of the street which will be unavailable under the SDOT plan.  This is also a official Whale Trail location with signage.  The whole idea of the Whale Trail is to allow the public to appreciate the whales from shore not from a boat.  The parking on the street allows people to get to the viewing area quickly as the whales move fast and walking or biking especially in poor weather conditions is not a good option both time-wise and weather-wise.  My credentials:  I was a marine science educator at the Seattle Aquarium for 28 years and was the person who first proposed the Marine Reserve System and worked with other education staff members to develop the Beach Naturalist program and the Citizen Science Program as well as providing almost all of the educational photographs used in training sessions.  There is also no public transportation to Constellation Marine Reserve….I guess thousand of people will have to use Uber of Lift to get to the beach….since not everyone that visits the park rides a bike or will walk miles to access a resource they own.  

    • Eldorado February 29, 2024 (5:48 pm)

      Perfectly said Leo! Couldn’t agree more with everything you wrote. 

    • KM February 29, 2024 (5:58 pm)

      They already have the beach naturalist program and Whale Trail info boards at Lincoln Park in areas you cannot park nearby without an ADA parking permit. I think it’s going to be okay!

    • Dad February 29, 2024 (8:37 pm)

      Thank you, Leo.  I am convinced this is way more harm than good.  Signed the petition.  

      • MMM March 8, 2024 (1:13 pm)

        The 14 storm drains on this part of Beach Drive flow directly into the Sound UNTREATED,  carrying car and street pollution out to the Sound.  The contamination for the cars directly effects the quality of the marine environment for the wildlife in the area.   Signing this petition does not help the wildlife or the health of the Sound.

    • Karyn M. March 1, 2024 (9:53 am)

      Yes absolutely – thank you for this, Buzz!  As a current and long time Beach Naturalist, having accessible marine habitat for people of all ages and abilities to be able to visit is something we all benefit from. Our shorelines are precious places that we all share and care for, and everyone should be able to access these spaces and community programs as freely as possible.

  • April February 29, 2024 (3:24 pm)

    Petition Signed!!! 

  • Veracity February 29, 2024 (3:33 pm)

    Is there a real need to spend precious public dollars on a 10-foot-wide “walking/rolling lane”?  There are sidewalks on each side of the street there, and I have never seen them so crowded that additional walking space would be needed.  The speed limit is 15 mph, and there are speed bumps.  Bicyclists don’t seem to be having a problem sharing the street.  They are often going faster than the cars.  This is one of Seattle’s infamous solutions in search of a problem.  Unless…the problem is beachfront property owners who want the public to pay for less of the public around in their enclave. 

    • SuzanneD February 29, 2024 (3:45 pm)

      Very well stated Veracity.  I think this Healthy Street is a success just as it is.  Pleasant to walk, cycle, access the beach for kayaking, low tide exploration, just having lunch, & looking at the waves, Olympic mountains, etc.  It is fine as it is ~ spend time, energy, and budget to  add sidewalks to parts of the city that don’t have sidewalks.  Spend time, energy, and budget to add bike lanes and/or or turning lanes to heavily used bike commuting routes to keep cyclists, pedestrians, and car drivers safe… I’m thinking of the tragic accident on Marine View Drive recently.Support access and protection of our Marine Mammals by providing people shoreline viewing opportunities.  I’m not against Healthy Streets Initiative and am happy for the limited access in place to remain although I agree with other people that it is confusing and does prohibit some people from feeling comfortable accessing that stretch of roadway.

    • Eldorado February 29, 2024 (5:50 pm)

      Perfect points! I concur. 👍 

  • Oh Seattle February 29, 2024 (3:46 pm)

    I feel like SDOT and Parks Dept. get most of their ideas from episodes of Portlandia.

  • luke February 29, 2024 (4:04 pm)

    Good for SDOT – adds more ADA spaces and makes a street much better while stopping car racing and other antisocial behavior. Smart move. Hope they go ahead with this instead of caving to an outspoken few here in the comments

    • Paul Hage March 3, 2024 (12:22 pm)

      The statement “adds three ADA spaces” does not mention that it removes five ADA spaces on the shore side of the road.  That is a subtraction of two.  We are 76 and 80 years old.  We enjoy the beach from our car for an hour or so – as do 30% of the users according to the SDOT survey.  Control of antisocial behavior can be largely achieved with time and area restrictions – like on summer weekends and late evenings.  Most of our visits find a mostly empty street.  Permanent closure is classic overkill.  The plan needs revision.

  • Reed February 29, 2024 (4:21 pm)

    Keep the parking. I honestly get a kick out of watch drivers bicker over parking spaces, sit in traffic, and generally be miserable while I run or ride my bike through that area.

  • MacJ February 29, 2024 (4:35 pm)

    You can drive four cars abreast down that street but there isn’t enough room on the sidewalk for 2 strollers/wheelchairs/etc side by side.

    Meanwhile there’s an abundance of parking 10s of feet away on 63rd/Beach Dr.

    Where can I sign a petition to buy the Seal Sitters a wagon?

  • Ian February 29, 2024 (4:39 pm)

    What’s the problem? Why can’t people park on the other streets? Why is it considered normal to store private property on public land? The entitlement of drivers is hilarious. The only problem with this is it doesn’t remove all street parking on Beach Dr SW and use that space to expand access for walking/cycling

    • Plf March 1, 2024 (3:17 am)

      And those who are disabled?I believe they “left’ a couple of spotsnot everyone is able body to cycle, run or even walk, but to those privileged out of sight out of mind

  • IF February 29, 2024 (4:51 pm)

    As a runner who regularly runs in the roadway along this stretch, the dedicated walking/rolling lane is not necessary. This project solves a problem that doesn’t exist.

  • KM February 29, 2024 (5:24 pm)

    April Fools came early this year.

  • wetone February 29, 2024 (5:51 pm)

    Where is funding coming from for this 4 year project ? general fund, SDOT, Parks or private ?  How much $$ has been spent ? What is projected total cost ?    Isn’t there a better way to spend tax dollars (if that’s the case) in a city that is forecasting $250mil shortfall ?  Something really stinks about this project…  ;)

    • onion February 29, 2024 (8:21 pm)

      I agree with all the commenters who believe restricting access to this stretch further is a solution in search of a real problem. We have so many legitimate projects in need of city energy and money that it seems detrimental to spend more time and resources on the stretch of Beach Drive along Constellation Park.

  • Matt Hutchins February 29, 2024 (6:00 pm)

    Hey, you can still park ACROSS THE STREET. The project keeps 46 parking spaces there!

    • Beth Bakeman February 29, 2024 (6:10 pm)

      Why do you want the parking removed, Matt? What good would that do? Truly curious as I can’t come up with any reasons.

      • Matt Hutchins February 29, 2024 (7:24 pm)

        Sure. If you have to drive, there is parking across the street, it is safer for everyone to have fewer cars, and cars spoil the view. 

        • Kyle February 29, 2024 (8:45 pm)

          You are assuming that parking won’t already be filled with cars on a summer day. No parking analysis was done, just caving to a special interest group mostly concerned about car clubs/riff raff. It’s the wrong million dollar+ solution.

  • Vlad February 29, 2024 (6:25 pm)

    This stretch of road belongs to a much larger community than the houses that front it.  To remove the parking spaces would limit access to this precious stretch of waterfront by diverse groups of people that access it from this location   I regularly come here to tidepool, view wildlife, skate and walk.   I live in Gatewood, which isn’t within easy walking distance, especially when wearing high rubber boots.  There isn’t any transit in this location, so that parking is what allows me to do that.  Often I come with a friend who has an electric vehicle, which will soon be the norm.  One of my greatest pleasures is to see children having their first experience exploring ocean tidal flats, the area is a gateway to learning about our ocean environment.  This is already about as healthy a street as it can be, and I fear that the use of that word is greenwashing the removal of critical access to the shoreline.  Keep it as is, this is a street that already does all of the things that define the word healthy.

    • acorn national standard March 1, 2024 (8:54 am)

      About 1/3 of our state can’t drive or doesn’t have access to a car. How would preserving cheap space to store one’s private  property in public right of way help us enjoy this public space? 

  • Ross February 29, 2024 (6:36 pm)

    All the Healthy/safe streets need to go! I’m about ready to start dismantling the ones in my neighborhood. If they can’t listen to what the majority want and stop the over reach, it’s time for chaotic disobedience!

  • admiral admirable February 29, 2024 (6:40 pm)

    I live in the neighborhood, often drive to Constellation, and I want parking removed. The existing sidewalk is totally inadequate and people typically have to jump off it into the street to pass each other, which is hard to do when it’s used as a parking lot. The street is supposed to be closed to cars but that is completely ignored, so walking in the street is as dangerous as walking in any other street. Probably worse because drivers are looking at the view. Parks should be for people, not cars. All the parking maniacs in this neighborhood are really living in the past. Your way of life is ending, it was never sustainable, it isn’t natural and is an aberration. Sorry.

    • Veracity March 1, 2024 (3:52 am)

      First, what can we say about self-entitled people would would walk on a normal-sized sidewalk, apparently hogging it and not yielding to others, such that “people typically have to jump off it into the street to pass each other”?”Your way of life is ending, it was never sustainable, it isn’t natural and is an aberration.”  Wow, that sounds Old Testament!

    • Lola March 1, 2024 (7:41 am)

      Admiral Admirable,Your way of life is ending?? It isn’t natural.  What world do you live in? Really.  What do we need to conform to your way of life now?  I have never met anyone who has to jump into the street and pass each other.  It is not like there are a thousand people there at one time.  Your whole ilogical way of thinking is absurd.The street is not closed to cars, it is advising you to take another route if you can.  You can still go down that street.  When my car tabs stop paying for streets I will gladly stop going down them.  

  • ITotallyAgreeWithYou February 29, 2024 (6:43 pm)

    Signed, shared, posted comment! Thanks to all who alerted us to this issue.

  • Donna, The Whale Trail February 29, 2024 (6:58 pm)

    For us (The Whale Trail), it’s not just the parking the matters. It’s the Street Closed signs that have kept most people away, and turned it into a semi-private park.

    From our outreach, we know firsthand that people came to Alki Point from all over the city, country and world. That all changed when the Street Closed signs were installed.

    I am concerned about the impact on our program. I am more concerned about who is being cut off, and what has already been lost. How can a change of this scale move forward without square one studies about its impacts, or public notification?

    Thanks to everyone who’s signed the petition. Please share it widely!

    • dolly alderton February 29, 2024 (8:47 pm)

      I don’t believe the ‘street closed’ signs have deterred anyone. People simply park outside of Beach Drive and walk to the beach. It seems unlikely that visitors from across the city, country, or even the world would come all the way to Alki Point only to turn back because of a street-closed sign. In fact, on sunny days, I’ve observed many people coming out on their bikes and scooters, enjoying the street.

  • Pam February 29, 2024 (7:35 pm)

    Interesting how this time and money couldn’t be used to improve public transportation, remove parking, and close the street in front of all the shops and restaurants. The sidewalks there are always packed on nice days and crossing the road is dangerous since no cars want to stop in case they lose a potential parking spot. Instead they decide to pour all this funding into the street with residential homes. 

    • dolly alderton February 29, 2024 (8:53 pm)

      The street that hosts all the shops and restaurants features a designated bike lane and sidewalk, making it significantly wider than Beach Drive. This allows it to accommodate two-way traffic, even with cars parked on both sides. In contrast, Beach Drive cannot handle the same level of activity, and the presence of cyclists makes the street even narrower on busy days.

  • Lura February 29, 2024 (8:02 pm)

    I think the petition has a photo from Emma Schmitz (Mee Kwa Mooks), not Constellation Park. I signed the petition anyway, as I do think that Parking at Constellation is a public resource that should remain available for families from around the City to access this fine beach. But, seriously? You used a picture from the wrong park?

    • Donna, The Whale Trail February 29, 2024 (9:47 pm)

      The photo was taken at Constellation Park yesterday. Thank you for signing the petition!

    • Pelicans March 1, 2024 (1:51 am)

      The photo was taken from 63rd Ave. SW looking northwest along Beach Drive.
      Thanks for signing the petition!

  • Matt Hutchins February 29, 2024 (10:56 pm)

    I like how the story’s accompanying photo shows exactly two parked cars where there are more than a hundred empty parking spaces. 

    • Steve March 1, 2024 (8:04 am)

      It also shows sidewalks on both sides and not a person in sight.

    • Scarlett March 1, 2024 (9:05 am)

      Yeah, and where are all the joggers, cyclists, unicyclists, strollers, Matt?  Gosh, there might be room for all, including parking spaces, after all?  It’s West Seattle, not balmy Miami Beach.  Let supply and demand dictate usage, we don’t need hall monitors dictating how others use a public good.  

  • Kristin February 29, 2024 (11:07 pm)

    This is not about rich people that have houses on Beach Dr. Assume what you want but this street is used for drag racing during daylight and evening hours. Since the implementation of the safe streets initiative, the racing activity has greatly reduced. The foot traffic and people enjoying the park has not reduced as you might claim. It’s still lively on beautiful days. People can still easily access and have continued to access the street.

    • Veracity March 1, 2024 (3:27 am)

      Please explain how this street is used for drag racing when the street has multiple speed bumps.

      • Kristin March 1, 2024 (10:41 pm)

        Clearly you haven’t been on this street or you wouldn’t be asking this question. Please do your research and know the street and neighborhood first. 

    • Kyle March 1, 2024 (9:08 am)

      Reducing access to tax-paying citizens is not the answer to car racing woes.

      • Kristin March 1, 2024 (10:43 pm)

        As stated, access has not been reduced. It is still very easy to access the street, and residents and nonresidents continue to do so. 

  • Sally March 1, 2024 (1:54 am)

    Thank you for your actions! Petion is signed and I am sharing it with all my friends that I take there to see orcas and just enjoy the beach. We don’t live in the walking distance and if they remove the parking we won’t be able to enjoy orca whales from the shore. We can’t walk out on our deck or balcony and use binoculars to be able to see these mighty mammals in their natural home. We have to prepare, pack some things and unfortunately use a car. Sometimes we have very little time to get to the place where we can see them. We wish we lived by the shore with beautiful views and primo location to be able to enjoy marine life but we don’t. This little stretch of a street gave us so much joy not only from whale watching but also from meeting like minded people. Keep it as it is! It’s beautiful.

  • LeaveItOpen March 1, 2024 (6:12 am)

    I’m a delivery worker in my spare time and use my own vehicle when I work. It’s a newer car and I keep it very clean. I myself am professionally kept and probably look more like the company CEO. When I need to access this strip to deliver to the very people who live there I drive courteously and under the speed limit and politely wait for people to move. Yet the amount of people who refuse to step aside so I can pass through here is amazing. They look right at you and if they do not recognize you, a slow and ugly glare is almost always sure to follow. I love the view and the smell of the sea here, and sometimes I think that it would be nice to just pull over and maybe take a 5 min break to recharge. But this strip sadly sucks that thought right out of me. I’ve been through thousands of neighborhoods and other that a couple gated and guarded communities I’ve never seen anything like this. I also live in WS and remember when this was open. I never had an issue with cars or pedestrians. And most certainly nothing like Alki Ave. It was a friendly place for everyone before the closure. Now (walking or driving) I just don’t feel welcome here…like I’m trespassing in someone’s back yard. I understand what they may be trying to do here but I believe it’s having more of a negative effect. It’s really kind of sad. 

    • West Seattle Nomad March 3, 2024 (12:53 am)

      I hope you signed the petition! You have as much right to be here as everyone else! 

  • Stephen March 1, 2024 (6:22 am)

    Love the proposal! We bike down from the Junction area with the kids all the time and are excited to see more safe pedestrianized zones. Keeping parking on one side of the street is a fair balance. Will be sending a note to the city to let them know how supportive other residents are of it. 

  • John March 1, 2024 (6:26 am)

    Again, perfect example of government thinking they know local issues better, it should be for the people by the people.They need to ask and listen before they assume they know better.

  • Taco March 1, 2024 (7:57 am)

    Nothing says “Wildlife Advocacy” like driving your micro plastic producing machine in an area where the debris will be immediately washed into the Sound… Creating safe spaces for pedestrians and cyclists is how we save the planet, not parking.

  • DeeJay March 1, 2024 (8:41 am)

    again, more idiotic decisions by the city.  This ONLY pushes parking to the already more conjested parking areas and adds frustration to the homeowners where what little parking there was will be an even bigger challenge.  BRAVO, SEATTLE.   this team or city individual needs a pay raise and promotion

  • Mark H March 1, 2024 (8:55 am)

    Make Alki area 24/7 paid parking and problems go away. Good God people.  Pick your battles and stop complaining about everything. 

  • Momo March 1, 2024 (1:26 pm)

    If all designated Healthy streets were intended for no cars to drive down with the exception of local home and business access, then it also intends no parking. Parking would mean driving a car to park – ya? If people need permits, then please lobby for permits. Please don’t lobby to take away a space that has been designated for four years already. Our family uses that healthy street multiple times a week and find lots of parking elsewhere. We have parked elsewhere because the street is closed to cars. We are so thankful for the safe space and hope that the groups who need closer and longer access can find a solution for permits as I am sure the Seattle Aquarium will have to figure out too in order to continue their programming down there at low tides.

  • Shh March 1, 2024 (3:29 pm)

    The city should enforce eminent domain, demolish all waterfront homes and buildings by several blocks back and turn that whole area  into a natural, sprawling public park for all! Let’s get back to nature.  Buh-bye privately owned waterfront property owners, yeah! lol!  

  • Eli March 1, 2024 (3:32 pm)

    I think the issue with this specific location (maybe others in the city, this doesn’t seem like a typical application of healthy street) is that the public impact is disproportionately higher than the resident benefit. The signage is only at Beach Drive, and seems very odd that it doesn’t wrap around to include Alki Ave SW (maybe this has changed, but last I was out there this was the case). If this did happen, then I could see the argument that this is actually supporting the neighborhood. And it was one thing to prevent this from being a through-traffic option (I say that in a good way), but to now make access to the beach even harder… climate/lifestyle/activities aside, I don’t know how that doesn’t smack of favoritism for that small group of residents. There’s no logic to the decision

  • Danimal March 1, 2024 (3:37 pm)

    This really is a huge waste of public tax dollars that need to go somewhere else for sorely needed road rebuilding, if not another basic infrastructure maintenance project. This is 100% our government not listening to the will of the people, not focusing on the things that really matter, and bowing to pressure from the most moneyed people in the city. I’m no Republi-tator, but I can recognize governmental excesses and misplaced priorities when they’re staring me in the face.

  • KA March 1, 2024 (4:12 pm)

    Ruin access to everything. Ridiculous.

  • Pookie March 1, 2024 (10:46 pm)

    Another outrageous attempt by the Uber-Wealthy along Alki to snatch up public spaces and make them a private playground. Petition signed and this West Seattlite is ready to go down and protest the homeowners. Let’s make signs that read: “Eat the Rich!”

  • Won’t Somebody Think of the Cars??? March 2, 2024 (3:46 am)

    I walk down this stretch of road regularly and have never seen it  even remotely close to full usage of its existing parking. 

  • OneTimeCharley March 2, 2024 (5:20 am)

    Please recall that Camp Second Chance was also supposed to be “temporary”. It seems like those in the middle continue to suffer at the hands of the extremes. Eventually there will be no middle any longer and everyone will be relegated to one extreme end of the financial spectrum or the other. Our future awaits and it’s looking more and more like it will be modeled on a fixed caste system. When dovetailed with one party’s obvious desire to deny our right to self-determination, the future looks quite bleak to these old, tired eyes. The power to correct these inequities, but only if we choose wisely this Autumn.

  • Don Brubeck March 2, 2024 (8:16 am)

    There will still be car parking and cars and trucks will still be able to travel the full length of the street. If parking is full, Seal Sitters will be able to drop off equipment just like all the delivery trucks that will continue to use the street.

    Seal Sitters and Orca Network respond now at Jack Block Park and Lincoln Park from parking that is up to 3/4 mile away to sites with no adjacent street for dropping equipment. Constellation Park is only 1/4 mile end-to-end and has car access the full length.

    • Paul Hage March 3, 2024 (11:53 am)

      My concern is the absence of reason for closure.  If there is a problem that requires restriction, like too much conflict on summer weekends and night time, then restrict parking at those times.  We are old – we enjoy the shore side curb for in-car viewing – especially in the off season when migratory birds are plentiful and traffic light.

  • wetone March 2, 2024 (10:59 am)

    Local news channel did blurb on this SDOT fiasco and was interesting how SDOT spokesperson said project is going forward per plan after many years of planning. Spokesperson said SDOT had surveyed throughout county and discussed project with the public and it was done deal……. I found it interesting that the person interviewed pro project said nothing about healthy streets,  only mentioned safety issues related to reckless driving and noise. Videos showing the reckless driving in blurb wasn’t area involved)… Interesting how special interest groups had an issue regarding a redesign of a park recently and SDOT stopped the project quickly. Be interesting to do a public records request on this safe streets project for true cost, city time spent and all survey data for project……… This project goes against all common sense, whose street will be  next…..

    • nothend March 2, 2024 (2:49 pm)

      Wetone,Who’s street will be next? Hopefully mine. I live on Palm Ave SW,,, and the sidewalks are only like 3 feet wide,,, makes it really hard to pass other walkers and not have to step on the parking strip or out into the street. And biking is almost impossible because on some parts of Palm Ave they allow parking on both sides of the street. The only fix that I can come up with would be a couple of “Street Closed” signs at both ends. 

  • aa March 2, 2024 (3:04 pm)

    Its my understanding that the intention behind blocking off certain ‘ Healthy Streets’  was to give people room to walk at a safe distance apart during Covid.  When I come upon a street with barriers now years later it just looks like the city never got around to taking them down.  Not talking about this specific street but in general I just drive through. No one  is walking in the middle of the road. Often there is no one around at all.  This particular project definitely seems like a waste to change something thats not a problem.  Its not like the area for miles in every direction is lacking in places to walk.

  • Paul Hage March 2, 2024 (3:50 pm)

    My wife and I have used the shore side curb of Beach Drive a couple of days each week since our retirement in 2011.  It is our chosen recreation and of great value to us.  With age our use is for about an hour of in car viewing.  The HS survey showed 30% of use is in car viewing.  The latest update proposing permanent year ’round loss of 61 spaces is characterized as what the community “strongly desired”.  That is simply not true according to their own study.  They presented data on use by walkers, bikers and vehicles during Apr-Jun – with no mention of Oct-Mar when viewing is magnificent and usage minimal – Yet they include total closure as part of what the community “strongly desires”.  It does not appear they have really reached out to the community for the big picture.  Recent news coverage repeats the concern over too many cars and bad behavior.  I rarely see that because I avoid summer weekends, but I don’t question there are problems.  At the 20 Feb council meeting the director was asked about his approach.  He said specificity first, then flexibility.  Perhaps it is now time to consider an approach that addresses everyones needs.  If parking restriction is one of them make it time specific – like summer weekends and late evenings – and leave we who choose to use our park responsibly free to do so.  Like so many of the signers of the current petition.  Thanks to “Alki Point for All!

  • TCA March 2, 2024 (6:22 pm)

    I oppose this project as someone who needs a vehicle to get around. I fail too to see how this isn’t some sort of elitist power grab by some of the residents there who want their own private space at public expense. I live on Alki Ave SW and the racing, backfiring cars tear around at all hours of the day and night. Can we therefore consider Alki ave the next candidate for “healthy streets?” Obviously that would be ridiculous and this project is only slightly less so.

  • WiseWoman March 3, 2024 (8:47 pm)

    This project alone is such BS and a waste of taxpayer money!! It doesn’t take in account if how events and this closure affect the entire neighborhood around there. I am a frequent visitor to friends and clients on nearby roads and its ridiculous to have a toad closure or any healthy streets closed it was for Covid only. The insanity needs to stop. 

  • sick & tired March 7, 2024 (12:36 pm)

    yes it does –     AMEN to that !!!

Sorry, comment time is over.