News of Madison Valley

ACTION/FEEDBACK: Dorffel Drive Intersection Reconfiguration Study


Your feedback is needed on an experimental pedestrian safety intersection reconfiguration. Please share this invitation for feedback to anybody you know who uses Dorffel Dr E and the intersection of E Harrison St at Lake Washington Blvd (between The Bush School and Lake View Park). As supporters of safe routes to schools, parks and other local destinations, your feedback is very much needed at some point between now and Oct 6th.


As part of The Bush School's commitment to experiential education, students in the 2014 winter Action Module Program (AMP) ventured beyond the traditional classroom setting and engaged with local community organizations to develop a Safe-Routes-To-School map.

The students identified the three way intersection of E Harrison St, Lake Washington Blvd and 37th Ave E (separating The Bush School from Lake View Park) to be a hazard to students arriving by foot or by bike from the south (Denny Blaine, Madrona and Leschi).

When asked by the Denny Blaine Neighbors for Safer Streets (DBNFSS), local community groups (Madison Park Community Council and Madison Park Greenways) agreed to help study this issue. Subsequently, the MPCC collaborated with the Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) to execute a 6 week test of a new configuration of the intersection of Lake Washington Blvd and 37th Ave E.

From Aug 18 through Oct 6, this new configuration will be evaluated using temporary materials to see how it performs and to see if there are any unforeseen problems with the configuration. The final reconfiguration won't resemble the current one. Numerous usability problems are already apparent, but data from this experiment will inform the design process.

While SDOT will conduct quantitative traffic volume and speed data as part of this study, qualitative data is needed in order to understand who uses this intersection (and especially Dorffel Dr E) and what role it plays in the lives of those who depend on it today. Love it or hate it, this is where your experience and insights are crucial to a successful long term outcome.

In order to fully participate in this data gathering activity, it's important for you to experience the test reconfiguration in as many ways as possible. Since it's primarily a pedestrian safety study, we ask you to walk from The Bush School through this intersection to Lake View Park and back. Experience it at different times of day and in different lighting conditions. If you drive, try it out from each of the three legs of the intersection. Note whether traffic is moving more slowly, attentively and carefully than before. If you own a bicycle, try rolling between the barriers and see if you feel more or less comfortable waiting for a break in traffic than before.

Once you've experienced it fully, come back and fill out this short survey to capture your experiences. (Pardon that some of the text fields are small, you can paste in responses from a text editor or word processor if you find it easier.) If you have further insights later, come back and give more comments. Spread the word, we need lots of feedback.

After the test period, the temporary treatment will be removed so we can study the traffic with the previous configuration.

Thank you for your support and patience during this experiment. Your written feedback is vital to informing the design process.


Topics: Transportation, Safety