Policy & Infrastructure News

As of April 20, 2019

SEATTLE

Leadership

  • On Monday, April 22, Seattle City Council will vote on which of 11 applicants will fill the District 4 seat, recently vacated by Rob Johnson.
    • When asked during a public forum whether they supported bike lanes on 35th Ave NE, Darcy DuComb and Kathryn Gardow indicated they did not.
    • Nearly all applicants support pedestrianizing The Ave.
    • Brooke Brod, David Goldberg, and Abel Pacheco attended a recent meeting of Green Lake & Wallingford Safe Streets.
    • David Goldberg is the board president of Seattle Neighborhood Greenways and WSDOT’s SR520 Project Ombudsman who has helped get a transit-only lane added to an off-ramp and assist in resolving neighborhood angst about increased traffic during construction.
  • Shaun Scott (candidate for District 4) has collected the most Democracy Vouchers; Kshama Sawant (District 3) has fundraised the most from outside of Seattle. Seattle PI
  • Seattle Bike Blog is forming a candidate endorsement board; and Kelli Refer (former Cascade field organizer, Bike Works staffer, and G&O Family Cyclery staffer) is now a legislative aide to Councilmember Mike O’Brien. SBB
  • Seattle Councilmember Debora Juarez has been nominated to the Sound Transit Board. Kent Reporter

Proposed BMP Implementation Plan

  • Seattle’s implementation of its Bicycle Master Plan now has half the miles of bikeways to built at twice the timetable as set out in 2017. West Seattle Bike Connections did some great analysis for how the new delays impact West Seattle. WSBC.
  • Cascade says the city’s proposed BMP Implementation Plan is close to “connecting seattle” with “a few tweaks.” Cascade
  • SDOT’s first two of four Coffee Clashes for the BMP Implementation Plan are next week. CHSMy Ballard

Bikeshare

  • Seattle is the only city in America with dockless bikeshare but no docked bikeshare and no scootershare. SBB
  • Lyft pulls its electric bikes from streets in several cities after it discovers brake problems.  Lyft has been expected to bring its bikes to Seattle this spring or summer. The News Tribune
  • Bikeshare riding declined during the February snows. MyNw

Participatory Street Projects

Tolling

  • With NYC moving forward on congestion pricing, Seattle thinks about it. Seattle Times
  • A transportation consultant completed a tolling study for SDOT in February, but Mayor Durkan refuses to allow it to be released. Seattle Times
  • The Seattle Times Editorial Board says “no” to congestion pricing.
  • Seattle Times columnist Jon Talton has so many thoughts on tolling that he has no thoughts other than that the City should implement tolling at the pace of I-5 traffic when a fish truck collides with a bee truck on a Thursday at 5pm.

North Seattle + Shoreline

  • The City of Shoreline seeks feedback on improving walking and biking access to the future Sound Transit Light Rail Station at NE 145th Street. STBComment Online.
  • Last year bike/ped/transit advocates, thanks to facilitation by city council District 4 appointment applicant David Goldberg who’s the SR520 Project Ombudsman, successfully got WSDOT to add a transit-only lane on a Montlake offramp. Now the transit lane will soon go away as construction of the “Last of the West” SR520 Project begins in Montlake. STB

Central Seattle

  • SDOT needs to implement complete protected bike lanes on Union Street, not half ass it, say Urbanist & SBB.
  • Since the implementation of the two-way protected bike lane on 2nd Avenue in 2014, bike ridership has increased 413% on the street. Streetsblog.
  • Major changes are coming to the Colman Dock ferry terminal, with construction completion expected in 2023. There will be a new bike entry. WSDOT

KING COUNTY & REGION

  • The King County Council voted 8-1 to send a 6-year Parks Levy to voters this August. Of the $338 million in capital improvements, $154 will be dedicated to regional trails.
    Seattle PatchWSB

    Regional trail investments will include:

    • Eastside Rail Corridor ($50 million)
    • East Lake Sammamish Trail ($32 million)
    • Lake to Sound Trail ($16 million)
    • Foothills Trail ($5 million)
    • Green to Cedar Rivers Trail ($9 million)
    • Interurban Trail South ($5.5 million)
    • Green River Trail Extension North ($6 million)
    • Wayne Connector Trail ($2 million)
    • Pavement resurfacing and other safety improvements of existing trails ($18 million).
  • PSRC released its 2017 Travel Survey results, filled with interesting facts. Bike ridership across the region was pathetic (<1%, 2% in Seattle).  Eight-two percent of transit riders walk to their bus (or rail), but the regional still massively subsidizes free car parking at transit stations as a means of increasing ridership. Meanwhile, whether employers offer free parking is the major factor for whether employees drive to work or not.  And higher income workers get more free transit passes than poorly paid workers. Urbanist

PIERCE

  • Tacoma will soon have its largest sidewalk cafe outside of the new McMenamins Elks Temple. I wonder, will it be the largest in Cascadia? Tacoma Weekly

STATE

  • The legislation to enforce bus lanes and against “blocking the box” using traffic cameras remains alive in the state legislature, passes out of House. STBSeattle Times
  • WSDOT is updating the State Active Transportation Plan, and you can weigh-in. WSDOT
  • WSDOT Active Transportation Director Barb Chamberlain writes what she’s reading. Bike Style Life

NATIONAL & RESEARCH

  • USDOT has turned the TIGER program, which funded urban transit, bike & walk infrastructure into the BUILD program, which funds rural roads. T4A
  • A study found that drivers pass bicyclists 1.25 feet closer on streets with painted bike lanes and car parking than streets with no bike infrastructure. Advocates cite study for why protected bike lanes are necessary. Streetsblog

As of January 3, 2019

As of February 8, 2018

  • 2nd Ave Protected Bikeway Opens
    • The two-way protected bikeway on 2nd Avenue in Downtown now extends all the way from S Washington Street to Denny Way, a 24-block stretch — all the lights, planters, and markings are installed (SDOT).
    • In celebration of the 2nd Ave Protected Bikeway, the Belltown Brewing (301 E Pine St), will donate a dollar for every beer sold on Tuesday, Feb. 13 (4-9pm) to Cascade Bicycle Club.
  • 35th Ave NE
    • SDOT finalized its design for new bikeways on 35th Ave NE, with paving and installation to happen this spring and summer (SDOT).
  • Burke-Gilman Trail Missing Link
    • Last week the Seattle hearings examiner decided SDOT completed a sufficient environmental impact assessment for the Burke-Gilman Trail Missing Link, but the opponents vow to continue fighting the project (PSBJCouncilmember Mike O’Brien).
  • Bikeshare
    • Bothell and Kenmore are opening embracing bikeshare, and Bellevue will likely roll out pilot authorization soon (Crosscut).
    • “Seattle’s dockless bike shares: Our guide to the city’s new wheels” (Curbed).
    • “Welcome to Seattle. The cloud is watching you,” (KUOW).
    • “Are E-Bikes the Future of Dockless Bikeshare?” (Bicycling).
  • Bicycle Parking
    • Seattle City Council is considering major parking legislation, including an update to bicycle parking requirements for new buildings (Bicycle Security Advisors).
    • Architects, developers, and property managers can compete for their building/project to be named best for bicycle parking (BSA).
  • Hostile Bike Racks
    • The city admitted that bike racks installed along Elliott Way under the Alaskan Way Viaduct as it enters into the Battery Street Tunnel were installed to prevent people from setting up tents as housing in that space (KING5KOMOSeattle Times).
    • Conservative talk show host Jason Rantz took the opportunity to attack Councilmember O’Brien (MyNorthwest).
    • Finally, after much media attention, the city reversed course and will remove the hostile racks (StrangerKIROMyNorthwestPubliCola).
  • Vision Zero
    • Family of Desiree McCloud is suing the City of Seattle over the streetcar tracks allegedly responsible for her death (Bicycling).
  • Climate
    • Trails are part of the local solutions to climate change, according to KUOW.
  • Bellevue
    • Thanks to the state capital budget, there’s now $8 million secured of the $13 million needed to retrofit the Wilburton Trestle on the Eastside Rail Corridor (Cascade).
    • Bellevue City Council held a hearing on a pilot downtown protected bike lane and pilot bikeshare program proposals (CascadeSeattle Bike Blog).
  • Kirkland
    • In the state capital budget, Kirkland received $2.5 million to connect the Cross Kirkland Corridor toward the Redmond Central Connector and the Eastside Rail Corridor toward Woodinville (Kirkland Patch).
    • Last night Kirkland held an open house to unveil designs for a trail bridge for the Cross Kirkland Corridor in Totem Lake (Kirkland ReporterKirkland Reporter).
    • A reader questioned the rationale for installing the Totem Lake trail bridge (Kirkland Reporter).
  • Arlington
    • The state capital budget provided $46,000 for the City of Arlington to develop a pocket park along the Centennial Trail at a former gas station; the park will likely include a rest area and bike racks for the trail users (North County Outlook).
  • Washington State Legislature
    • The State Senate continues to move legislation that would cut as much as $2.8 billion in funding for the ST3 light rail and transit investments, potentially eventually impacting pledged funding for bicycle and pedestrian improvements at future stations (Urbanist).