June 24, 2020 at 11:49 am #981533
After several attempts, and getting no response from our City Council West Seattle Representative, I’m throwing this idea out to the West Seattle general public: Now that we’re entering Phase 2 of the reopening plan for King County, I have an idea that would benefit our restaurants/businesses and patrons, as well. Using the California Ave SW area (say between SW Edmonds Street and SW Oregon Street) as an example, I recommend that that area be made into a pedestrian area only, allowing the restaurants/businesses to expand out into the sidewalks and outside lanes of the street, reserving the two middle lanes as a pedestrian walkway. This approach would allow the businesses in that area to safely space tables/merchandise apart to more easily observe the 6-foot social distancing effort, as well as serve more patrons than they would be able to under the current arrangement. Studies have shown that in areas that have gone pedestrian only, businesses have flourished. By making that area pedestrian only, it doesn’t impede anyone from getting to their businesses or living quarters, since that can all be accomplished utilizing the streets that already exist behind the businesses. I think this would really work and have a positive effect for all involved. I use the California Ave area as an example only, but this could be utilized in many areas that have a concentration of restaurants/businesses open to the public, such as Alki. There’s no reason traffic has to be in these areas – as a matter of fact, it’s probably safer in some respects not to have traffic zooming thru those crowded areas anyway. So I challenge you, Lisa Herbold, to look into this recommendation – SOON! We need to help our businesses succeed – NOW! And since it looks like our shopping and restaurant options are going to be limited due to Covid-19, compounded by the years-long bridge closure, it’s more important than ever that local businesses on our “island” be successful and that we, the public, also have the resources we need and enjoy.June 24, 2020 at 7:25 pm #981564
I completely agree with this idea, but it is not the city council or Lisa Herbold that will be the impediment; it will be the loud anti- anything (walking, bikes, transit) West Seattle car lobby.June 24, 2020 at 8:51 pm #981576
Are the junction restaurant owner’s wanting this? Would think that if it would help their bottom line they would be clamoring for it.June 25, 2020 at 6:24 pm #981640
You should ask the merchants first. You might be surprised to find that they’re opposed to closing their streets to traffic.
I understand that the dream is that it will be as busy and fun as a summer farmer’s market day, but the reality is that it will be almost as busy as it is now – probably less, since a provably large number of people come to the Junction in their cars, and if parking at mealtime becomes even more nightmarish than it traditionally has been, they may not come back.
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