Tag Archives: Seattle Department of Transportation

Construction Begins on RapidRide G Line to Open in 2024

The new route will ferry 12K passengers daily from downtown to Madison Valley by way of First Hill.

by Ben Adlin


A groundbreaking ceremony in Madison Valley this week marked the official start of construction of a new RapidRide bus route — the G Line — expected to carry nearly 12,000 people daily along Madison Street between downtown and Martin Luther King Jr. Way. 

The 2.3-mile transit expansion, projected to open in 2024, will include major upgrades to roads and sidewalks, including 240 curb cutouts to increase accessibility, new traffic signals, more visible crosswalks, signs that show real-time bus arrivals, and raised-curb stations designed to make it easier to get on and off buses — which will come every six minutes at peak times and have doors on both sides.

In the short-term, the $133 million project will likely mean a snarl of construction traffic on Madison, only adding to the region’s growing pains. But the investment of time and money will eventually mean a more connected, built-out transit system that links some of the city’s densest neighborhoods, speakers at Thursday’s, Sept. 30, event said.

“In some cities, the best lines of communication are from the city center to the suburbs,” said the Rev. Patricia Hunter of Mount Zion Baptist Church, where the groundbreaking ceremony was held. “But in Seattle, one of the best lines of transportation will serve those within the city, all along Madison.”

Continue reading Construction Begins on RapidRide G Line to Open in 2024

Durkan Budget Would Gut JumpStart Spending Plan, Increase Funding for Encampment Response

by Erica C. Barnett

(This article originally appeared on PubliCola and has been reprinted with permission.)


Mayor Jenny Durkan released the final budget of her term yesterday, Sept. 27, outlining the proposal at a very high level in a six-minute speech from North Seattle College. In the coming weeks, the proposal will be debated, analyzed, and rewritten by the Seattle City Council (the addition of 35 net new police officers is an obvious target for their red pens), and PubliCola will be covering every aspect of those upcoming discussions. For now, though, here are a few initial notes on the plan, which reflects better-than-expected revenues and incorporates a lot of ongoing federal funding for COVID-19 relief.

Continue reading Durkan Budget Would Gut JumpStart Spending Plan, Increase Funding for Encampment Response

The South End Guide to Reducing Our Carbon Footprint: Safety to Walk and Roll

by Mark Van Streefkerk


For Seattle to meet its carbon-neutral goal, we need to take an honest look at how we get from one place to another. Burning fossil fuels, like gasoline and diesel for motor vehicles, emits greenhouse gasses. In Seattle, roadway transportation makes up 40% of greenhouse gas emissions. For the U.S., emissions from transportation account for 29% of total greenhouse gases. Reducing our reliance on cars and gasoline plays an important role in reducing our carbon footprint. The good news is that everyday choices to walk, bike, scoot, or roll instead of driving can significantly reduce the greenhouse gasses we produce. Earlier this year a study found that ditching the car for one day out of the week can reduce personal carbon dioxide emissions by a quarter. Swapping even one trip in a car with walking or rolling makes a significant impact over time. 

Continue reading The South End Guide to Reducing Our Carbon Footprint: Safety to Walk and Roll

The Morning Update Show — 8/10/21

The Morning Update Show — hosted by Trae Holiday and The Big O (Omari Salisbury) — is the only weekday news and information livestream that delivers culturally relevant content to the Pacific Northwest’s urban audience. Omari and Trae analyze the day’s local and national headlines as well as melanin magic in our community. Watch live every weekday at 11 a.m. on any of the following channels, hosted by Converge Media: YouTube, Twitch, Facebook, Periscope, and whereweconverge.com.

We also post the Morning Update Show here on the Emerald each day after it airs, so you can catch up any time of day while you peruse our latest posts.

Morning Update Show — Tuesday, August 10

Live From the Liberty Bank Building | LIVE — Alyse Nelson of SDOT | LIVE — Elijah L. Lewis of Africatown | LIVE — Jamerika Haynes-Lewis, USA Ambassador, Ms. 2021 | New Vaccine Mandates for Public Employees

Continue reading The Morning Update Show — 8/10/21

What Happens to Seattle’s Streetside Cafés After the Pandemic?

by Ben Adlin


Last summer, when the first COVID-19 vaccine was still months away and indoor dining was limited, a group of businesses in Columbia City transformed a half block’s worth of South Ferdinand Street into The Patio, a shared outdoor seating area open to everyone. Residents could order takeout from nearby Geraldine’s Counter or Lottie’s Lounge, sure — or they could just drop in and say hello to friends they might not have seen since the pandemic began.

After months of social isolation, “a few people said it just kind of saved their life,” said Lottie’s owner Beau Hebert. “They were just going bonkers.”

The project unfolded under a special pilot program by the Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT), part of an aggressive push by the agency to quickly convert public streets and sidewalks into outdoor seating. Restaurants at the time were facing mass closures, and open-air dining offered customers a less-risky alternative to venturing inside. Changes to SDOT’s permitting process, including waiving fees that sometimes cost several thousand dollars per year, led to a proliferation of patio seating across the city.

But with restrictions on indoor dining now gone and nearly three in four eligible King County residents fully vaccinated, the city faces a choice: What to do with its outdoor dining and new communal spaces?

Continue reading What Happens to Seattle’s Streetside Cafés After the Pandemic?

District 2 Bears the Brunt of Seattle’s Traffic Deaths

by Lizz Giordano


A car crash in SODO took the life of a pedestrian just over three weeks into 2021. Days later, another traffic death occurred within the same block. Two months after that, a semi-truck collided with a bicyclist on the industrial streets of Georgetown, marking another fatality in the South End, where traffic deaths were quickly outpacing other areas of the city. 

In April, a driver fled the scene of a deadly crash with a bicyclist near Seward Park. Early one morning in June, another person died after an SUV hit a man walking along Airport Way South. Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) and police blogs show yet another pedestrian was killed near the Columbia City light rail station a few days later. 

Six months into 2021, more than half of all Seattle traffic fatalities have occurred in Council District 2, which includes Rainier Valley, SODO, and parts of Chinatown/International District. 

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NEWS GLEAMS: Record-Setting Heat, West Seattle Bridge Repair Developments, and More!

curated by Emerald Staff

A round-up of news and announcements we don’t want to get lost in the fast-churning news cycle! 


Seattle Sees (and Feels) Hottest Day on Record

During the recent heatwave, on Monday, June 28, 2021, the National Weather Service (NWS) station at SeaTac recorded 108 degrees Fahrenheit — the highest temp on record for Seattle.

The highest temp ever recorded in Seattle prior to Sunday, June 27, 2021, which is the day we broke the last record (with a 104-degree reading at SeaTac), was a balmy 103 recorded in 2009. This year, roadway pavement even expanded and buckled in some places due to the heat in Seattle, nearby, and elsewhere in the state, according to the Washington State Department of Transportation. 

Continue reading NEWS GLEAMS: Record-Setting Heat, West Seattle Bridge Repair Developments, and More!

SDOT Plans to Close Lake Washington Boulevard to Cars on Weekends Through September

by Jack Russillo


Beginning on the Fourth of July weekend, the 3-mile section of Lake Washington Boulevard between Mount Baker Park and Seward Park will be closed to vehicles every weekend of the summer.

The Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) announced the road closures on Thursday, June 24, as part of its Stay Healthy Streets initiative

The barricades that will signal the section closed-off to cars will be installed Friday afternoons and will be removed Monday mornings, except for Fourth of July and Labor Day weekends, when the barricades will be removed on the Tuesday morning after the holiday weekend. People driving to homes along the boulevard because they live there, are visiting, or making deliveries are allowed. 

“This summer’s approach […] expands the lakefront for more use, and supports affordable travel options by making it easier to walk, bike, and roll,” SDOT said in its announcement. “It provides space for children under 12 that are not currently eligible for vaccinations to stay active. It’s consistent to help people planning their trips and it maintains vehicle access during typical commute hours.”

Continue reading SDOT Plans to Close Lake Washington Boulevard to Cars on Weekends Through September

NEWS GLEAMS: Vaccines, Seattle Parks Summer Jobs, Share Your ‘Seattle Histories,’ & More!

curated by Emerald Staff

A round-up of news and announcements we don’t want to get lost in the fast-churning news cycle! 


The City of Seattle offers COVID-19 vaccines at a site in Rainier Beach.
The City of Seattle offers COVID-19 vaccines at its Rainier Beach Vaccination Hub, which now accepts walk/roll/drive ups. (Photo: Alex Garland)

COVID-19 Vaccination Accessibility & Other Info

Auburn Vaccination Center Now Offering Car-Side Service on Mondays From PHSKC: On Mondays only, beginning May 10, the Auburn vaccination clinic is offering car-side service for those who cannot easily walk into the clinic. Just let a greeter know upon arrival that car-side service is needed. Find directions to the Auburn location at https://kingcounty.gov/vaccine

Continue reading NEWS GLEAMS: Vaccines, Seattle Parks Summer Jobs, Share Your ‘Seattle Histories,’ & More!

Durkan Revisits Push to Move Parking Enforcement From Police to SDOT

by Paul Kiefer

(This article originally appeared on PubliCola and has been reprinted under an agreement.)


Six months after the Seattle City Council voted to move the city’s parking enforcement officers from the Seattle Police Department (SPD) to a new Community Safety and Communications Center by June, Mayor Jenny Durkan and Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) Director Sam Zimbabwe hope the council will revisit their decision. On Tuesday, April 13, Durkan’s office transmitted legislation to the council that would move the roughly 100 parking enforcement officers to SDOT instead, arguing that SDOT is better equipped to manage parking enforcement.

But the proposal is an unwanted case of déjà vu for the Seattle Parking Enforcement Officers’ Guild (SPEOG), the union that represents the officers. When the council was considering opportunities to shift some positions and responsibilities away from the police department as part of the larger conversation about defunding SPD last fall, SPEOG leadership lobbied the council to move them into the Community Safety and Communications Center, arguing that the placement would signal the parking officers’ role in the city’s reimagined approach to public safety.

Continue reading Durkan Revisits Push to Move Parking Enforcement From Police to SDOT