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
by Jake Goldstein-Street and Emerald Staff
(An earlier version of this article appeared on Capitol Hill Seattle Blog. This revised version is being printed under an agreement.)
On Monday, April 5, U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg announced $187 million in federal funding for four bus rapid transit projects — San Bernardino, California, Ogden, Utah, Everett, Washington, and right here on East Madison in Seattle.
From the announcement:
Continue reading Madison Bus Rapid Transit Project Secures Funding, Metro to Modify Passenger Limits
“The City of Seattle Department of Transportation will receive a $59.9 million allocation for the Madison Street BRT project, a 2.3-mile east-west BRT line operating diesel-electric buses along Madison Street spanning from downtown Seattle in the west to the Madison Valley neighborhood in the east, with connections in First Hill, Capitol Hill, and the Central Area. It will connect people to hospitals, schools, businesses, and other destinations as well as to dozens of bus routes, the First Hill Streetcar, and ferry service at the Colman Dock Ferry Terminal.”
by Ben Adlin
Seattle officials are urging residents to prepare for a series of winter storms expected to bring snow and sustained below-freezing temperatures to the region this week, warning that the severe weather could cause power outages, create problems for drivers, and put vulnerable populations at risk.
“We have to check in with our neighbors at times like this, especially our seniors and disabled neighbors,” Mayor Jenny Durkan said at a press conference Wednesday afternoon. “And also remember, you have the responsibility to shovel that sidewalk in front of your property.”
Agencies around King County are gearing up for the severe weather — preparing to clear roads and adjust bus routes, for example — but leaders at Wednesday’s press conference acknowledged the ongoing pandemic will complicate some efforts, such as expanding emergency shelter for people without housing.
Continue reading As Seattle Gears Up for Winter Weather, Officials Scramble to Secure Emergency Shelter
by Andrew Engelson
Thanks to an enthusiastic response from city residents, one mile of Lake Washington Boulevard will be closed to car traffic and open to walking, cycling, and rolling from Friday Dec. 18 through Sunday, Jan. 3. Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) announced the one-mile “Keep Moving” street after many people got outside to enjoy the three-mile closure of the street to cars over the summer. The current one-mile pedestrian-only stretch, which was also in effect over the Thanksgiving holiday, spans between Mount Baker Park in the north and Stan Sayres Memorial Park in the south.
Continue reading Lake Washington Boulevard Opens for Walking, Biking, and Rolling Over the Holidays
by Bunthay Cheam
On March 23, the City of Seattle closed the West Seattle Bridge due to rapidly expanding cracks that rendered it unsafe for vehicle traffic.
The bridge will be closed until at least 2021 and may not be repairable according to Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) director Sam Zimbabwe. SDOT is still working to assess the full cost and timeline of needed repairs.
The city-owned bridge is vital to people living on the West Seattle peninsula, serving as the main route of access to the rest of the city, serving about 100,000 vehicles per day.
The main detour routes offered by the city take drivers through the Duwamish Valley, and through the communities of Georgetown, South Park and along West Marginal Way.
Continue reading West Seattle Bridge Closure Exposes Inequities in Duwamish Valley Communities