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Seattle City Council District 3 Candidate Forum
Monday, June 8th, 7:00 PM
Bush School Auditorium
3400 E Harrison St, Seattle, WA 98112
On May 20th about 15 Madison Valley/Madison Park residents attended an update meeting on two public transportation projects affecting east Madison neighborhoods:
* Madison Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) — Update by SDOT
* Proposed 8 and 11 Changes — Update by Metro KC
Thierry Rautureau of Luc kindly hosted the meeting. Lindy Wishard called the meeting to order and gave an quick overview of the two projects. She introduced Reg Newbeck, a neighborhood public transportation advocate, and then introduced the SDOT and Metro speakers.
Maria Koengeter of SDOT on Madison BRT
Madison BRT would provide fast, reliable bus service on Madison Street from the waterfront to 23rd Ave or possibly Martin Luther King (MLK).
Residents present expressed support of the BRT extending to MLK. There was some concern about loss of parking on Madison in the Valley, but Maria said there would be no dedicated bus lane east of 20th Avenue. Residents also advocated for an intermediate stop between 23rd and MLK so as to reduce the need to walk a steep hill.
Maria mentioned that an extension to MLK would require creating a layover location on Arthur Place, with the loss of some parking.
The buses will be electric trolley buses — regular tires, not rail. Overhead wires would be used, although they are exploring the possibility of using electric battery buses.
The BRT will improve speed and reliability by using dedicated lanes and priority traffic signaling. Studies and simulation indicate a local bus takes about 16 minutes to travel from First Ave to 23rd, as little as 8 minutes and as much as 23 minutes. Maria projects that a BRT with dedicated lanes and signal prioritization will reduce average travel time to 9 minutes, plus or minus a minute.
Implementation of the BRT to 23rd is estimated to cost between $98 Million and $120M. Extension to MLK would cost another $13M for more wiring and a new electrical substation.
$15M of the funding would come from the $930M Move Seattle initiative on the ballot this fall. The balance ($83M+) would be sought from federal matching grants.
The possibility of extending the run of a subset of the trolley buses to Madison Park is being discussed, but no budget estimates have been made.
The project is in the planning stage. Service is proposed to begin in 2019.
More information and a survey can be found at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/MadisonBRTSurvey. The survey closes May 24th.
DeAnna Martin and Jeremy Fichter of Metro on Proposed 8 and 11 Bus Routes
DeAnna gave an overview of the Link Connections project to improve connectivity to the light rail system that will be expanded next March with Capitol Hill and Husky Stadium stops.
As publicized in earlier posts, Metro proposes the following changes to the two routes most used by east Madison residents:
* Move the western portion of 11 off of the Pike/Pine corridor and convert it to a water-to-water Madison route, with increased frequency — at least every 15 minutes Monday to Saturday.
* Split 8 into two routes at Jackson/Yesler. The northern/western half retains the 8 designation while the southern half becomes 38.
Jeremy Fichter of Metro gave more details:
When asked how riders will get to Pine/Pike commercial district, Jeremy suggested a transfer to 10 at 15th Avenue. He said it was a short walk, less than 600 feet. He did acknowledge the the transfer on return involved crossing both Pine and Madison. He also suggested taking 11 to 3rd, then taking one of the buses running north on the 3rd Avenue “transit spine” for the six blocks to Pine.
A Madison Park resident expressed concern over reduced access to light rail. For the ambulatory, the current 11 would have provided, with a 2+ block walk, access to the Capitol Hill Station. For the less ambulatory or more burdened, the current 11 provides direct access to the Convention Center light rail station. The proposed 11 doesn’t provide direct access to any of these stations. Jeremy said that Madison Valley residents will use 8 to get to the Capitol Hill Station. Madison Park residents can transfer from 11 to 8, or take 11 to 3rd Avenue and walk 3 blocks to the University Station. No Madison Park resident present expressed happiness with these alternatives.
Reg asked Jeremy why Metro didn’t incorporate the “notch” he proposed with his Alternative 3: that 11 would go off Madison at Pine and return on Broadway, providing an easier transfer to Pine/Pike via 10, and the 2 block walk access to Capitol Hill Station. Jeremy said route design calls for straight lines wherever possible and avoiding turns in congested areas.
Multiple concerns were expressed about the performance of the 8 on Denny. During rush hour, Denny is a parking lot. Jeremy agreed that this is a problem and that Metro is looking at mitigations. No details were provided.
Concerns were also expressed about the best split point between 8 and 38. I’m afraid I missed that part of the discussion.
More details can be found at http://metro.kingcounty.gov/programs-projects/link-connections/proposal.html#by-area. This Metro site asks for comments through email or web through the end of May.
The King County Council (not the Seattle City Council) will review the proposal late this summer.
This was a 90 minute meeting; these notes are not complete. Lindy, Reg, and other meeting participants, please supplement and correct as needed. All, please use the links above to find out more about these two proposals, and to register your comments.
Experience family-fun surrounded by the beautiful scenery at Seattle Japanese Garden on Sunday, May 31, when the garden hosts its annual Children’s Day event.
From 11 a.m.–3 p.m. there will be live entertainment and a variety of hands-on activity stations to give visitors of all ages an opportunity to enjoy Japanese cultural traditions. The Seattle Japanese Garden is located at 1075 Lake Washington Blvd S.
The performances, many of which will be interactive, include Issunboshi — The Inch High Samurai: A Modern Telling of an Ancient Japanese Story, by local puppet theatre West Cascade Puppet Brigade; an energetic taiko drumming show by youth group Kaze Daiko; an Aikido demonstration by the instructors and kids of Seattle Aikikai; and a dynamic presentation with Japanese swords by Seibu Ryu Iai-Battojutsu.
Local group Haiku Northwest will assist kids and adults with crafting garden-inspired haiku poetry. Washington Park Arboretum Education and Outreach staff will lead nature-inspired crafts, while P.A.P.E.R. volunteers will host mini-lessons on origami, including how to make wearable samurai kabuto hats. In a nod to the Japanese Garden’s Zen roots, children will be invited to rake their own miniature sand-and-stone garden and try water-based sumi-e brush painting with Japanese Garden volunteers.
Children’s Day is a Japanese national holiday that traditionally takes place on May 5, the fifth day of the fifth month. It is a day set aside to respect children’s personalities and to celebrate their happiness. It was designated a national holiday by the Japanese government in 1948.
Admission is free for all children age 12 and under. Ticket price for adults is $6; for youth 13 and over, seniors ages 65 and older, and students with ID, it is $4. Annual passes are accepted for event admission; with no additional charge.
For more information, including the exact time of the performances, visit www.seattlejapanesegarden.org.
There were 31 incidents reported to the police in Madison Valley during April, substantially lower than March, and only about half the monthly average reported in the several months before March. There were relatively few car prowls and vehicle thefts during April, but other frequent types of crime such as property damage/graffiti and theft were also rare. However, there were four burglaries during April, and a strong arm robbery.
1. On Tuesday, April 7 at 6:40 AM police responded to reports of an alarm sounding at marijuana distribution outlet on Madison near 23rd. When they arrived, they found that a glass panel in the front door of the business had been smashed open and that a burglar had entered the business through it. The police could not determine whether anything had been taken, although they did find a marijuana food item on the floor inside the front door. The owner of the business later reported that he had viewed a video recording of the burglary and that the burglar, whom he described as a male wearing a bandanna and a hoodie, had taken only one food item before leaving. The burglar left no fingerprints.
2. On Thursday, April 9 at about 4:30 PM residents of an apartment on Madison near 29th called police to report a burglary that had occurred sometime earlier that day. The burglar(s) kicked open the front door of the apartment and and searched both floors of the apartment, greatly upsetting the apartment’s canine resident in the process. Items worth approximately $2500 were stolen, including credit cards in a backpack left in an office near the front door. Neighbors did not report hearing the break in, but police found possible fingerprints in an upstairs bedroom.
3. Sometime during the night of April 22–23, a burglar gained entry to a business on Madison near 28th by prying open a key lock-box. The burglar stole approximately $500 from a cash drawer, a laptop computer, and five women’s workout shirts from the business’s retail display area. Police found fingerprints at the scene, and the owners of the shop have given the police names of possible perpetrators.
4. On Thursday, April 23 between noon and 12:30 someone kicked in the front door of a residence on John St. near MLK. When one of the residents returned home and saw the door, she called the police. The residents searched the home and found that a few items had been stolen, but what the items were and their value are not given in the police report. Police did not find fingerprints in the home.
Finally, on Monday, April 20 a resident of a building on 23rd near Denny called police around 5:45 PM to report that she had just been a victim of a strong arm robbery. The woman had parked her car on the P1 level of the building’s parking garage and hurried into the room outside an elevator when she saw her assailant, who was emerging from the stairway from the P2 level of the garage, notice her purse and start walking toward her. The robber was able to get through the door between the elevator room and the parking garage, however, and proceeded to shove her into a corner and demand that she hand over her belongings. The woman tried to fight off the robber, but he took her purse and fled into the stairway outside the elevator room. The woman’s purse contained her passport, credit cards, and a laptop worth approximately $650. There is a security camera in the elevator room where the robbery took place, and the manager of the building told the police that a tape of the robbery would be available on April 21.
Lowell Hargens is a Madison Valley resident and former University of Washington professor of sociology specializing in the statistical analysis of data.
At the May update meeting of the 520 Bridge construction, WSDOT staff announced that the June, July, and August monthly meetings will include a tour of the bridge construction area. The tours will begin with a brief meeting at the Graham Visitors Center. Afterward staff will lead neighbors out to Foster Island and beyond to view the current construction area. Participants are advised to wear hiking boots or shoes and be prepared for a one-hour walk. Interested neighbors who want to go on the tour need to register in advance. The dates for the tours are:
Wednesday, June 3rd, 5:30 pm
Wednesday, July 1st, 5:30 pm
Wednesday, August 5th, 5:30 pm
Register for the tour on the WSDOT website. Look for the article “Latest WABN Construction Update.”
Metro has announced their latest recommendations for re-routes to the Seattle bus system.
David Lawson did a good job of summarizing the changes in an article written for the Seattle Transit Blog. You can view the specific article here. The Seattle Transit Blog is independent of any transit agency including Metro, Sound Transit, and SDOT.
For the latest information direct from Metro visit: http://metro.kingcounty.gov/programs-projects/link-connections/
If you would like have a say in the latest iteration of the transit plan, please complete the survey here: http://metro.kingcounty.gov/programs-projects/link-connections/have-a-say.html
Finally, Metro will be in Madison Valley on Wednesday, May 20th, from 9:30 – 11 am at Luc to explain how the routes will affect our neighborhood. All are welcome and encouraged to attend.
Note: The comment period for this final round of design changes ends May 31st, so get your comments in soon! Nextdoor is an excellent place to comment and join the conversation on the Metro changes: https://arboretum.nextdoor.com
On Tuesday, May 13 at 2:30 PM three female residents and volunteers working in the Harrison Ridge Greenbelt were assaulted by stranger. He approached smiling with a friendly greeting. Suddenly, he looked enraged and struck one of us with two fists on the side of the head, knocking her to the ground. He looked at the two standing gardeners with malice and raised fists but abruptly turned and walked away.
He was a white male, mid 30’s and a bit unkempt.
Medics and police were summoned by 911. They both arrived promptly, were efficient and kind. The injured woman was treated at the scene and released home.
With our description, the police were able to locate and apprehend the man within the hour. We identified him and he was arrested.
The Parks Dept. and the police will sweep the Greenbelt on Thursday, May 15 to search for any sign of an encampment. We don’t expect anything but are using all caution to ensure our safety.
We cannot praise the fire fighters/ medics or police enough. They were truly wonderful.
Although our community is very safe, occasionally an incident such as this one will happen. This post is to remind everyone to use good judgment and safety awareness while out and about.
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[Reposted with permission from the Seattle Transit Blog]
We’ll spend the most time on this part of the proposal, because it’s so different from either Alternative 1 or Alternative 2. Here are the highlights:
Proposed Route 8
Proposed Route 38
Route 8. This proposal splits route 8 in half, but in a different place from Alternative 1: the Central District, rather than Capitol Hill/Madison Valley. Route 8 would be truncated at 23rd and Jackson, and new route 38 would take over service along MLK Jr Way south of Jackson. Frequency on both routes would be similar to the level current route 8 will reach once Prop 1 investments are made, but with an improvement to 12-minute midday service on route 8 only. The frequent evening and Sunday service included in Alternative 1 is not included here.
Proposed Route 11
“All-Madison” route 11. Metro received much feedback, not at all consistent, about Alternative 1’s Madison Street proposals. Its solution was to develop an “all-Madison” route 11, running every 15 minutes Monday-Saturday and every 30 minutes evenings and Sundays. It’s not clear this solution will make anyone happy. Downtown trips for eastern Madison riders will remain very slow, and will no longer reach the retail core. Connections from Madison Park to Link will require a ride all the way downtown or a two-bus ride to Capitol Hill Station. The route will have to use diesel coaches, which are far from ideal for the steep hills on Madison and Marion, and which will take electric trolley service away for riders on First Hill.
Proposed Route 12 (Or “Route 43 Jr”)
Routes 12 and 43 survive… sort of. These two routes, both proposed for deletion in Alternative 1, received a lot of love in comments to Metro. Metro’s solution was to create a “route 12″ which is really a truncated 43. It would serve 19th Ave E north of Thomas, but be identical to route 43 between 19th/Thomas and downtown. It would have the same frequency as the current 43, except 15-minute service would last a bit later. This solution preserves frequent service between downtown and Summit and to 19th Ave E. But it does not address criticism of Alternative 1 from Montlake residents, who would still have to transfer from route 48 to get downtown or to Capitol Hill. It will also require changes to trolley overhead at 19th and Thomas. Finally, with 15-minute frequency on this route and 12-minute frequency on route 8, it’s impossible to coordinate schedules between the two for super-frequent service along John St.
Route 49 stays on Pine. Alternative 1’s move of route 49 from Pine St to Madison St got a lot of love from the STB staff, and some from commenters, thanks to the new connection between First Hill and Link. But other commenters worried that Route 10 by itself was not enough capacity along Pine Street, and they carried the day. Route 49 will stay on Pine. It will also receive a daytime frequency boost from 15 to 12 minutes, except Sundays.
Ballard is awash in fantastic breweries (as is our ’hood, of course) but that can make for an expensive Uber ride after a fine day of beer drinking. So … sample some great brews from north of the ship canal right here in your backyard this Thursday night!
We’re hosting FOUR FINE Ballard establishments at The BottleNeck in conjunction with Seattle Beer Week. You can sample the suds AND meet the folks behind the scenes at the breweries. Here’s the line up:
Populuxe Brewing: Populuxe IPA
Stoup Brewing: Special Bitter
Bad Jimmy’s: Girl Scout Drop Out
Peddler Brewing Co: Tangerine Hefe
The main event is from 6-9 PM on Thursday but the beer will flow all night! Please join us!
2328 Madison Street
Report: Smoke billowing from the Madison Lofts build today at 10:45AM. Seven fire trucks and five ambulances on the scene.
Here are the Dept. of Planning and Development’s Land Use notices pertaining to the Madison Valley community from the last week. Note that the absence of recent reports is due to no notices pertaining to the Madison Valley community for most of April.
227 23rd Ave E
Land Use Application to subdivide one development site into three unit lots. This subdivision of property is only for the purpose of allowing sale or lease of the unit lots. The construction of residential units is under project 6405859. Development standards will be applied to the original parcel and not to each of the new unit lots.
Pedestrian Designation for Neighborhood Commercial Zones (including Madison Valley)
The Seattle City Council is considering Council Bill (CB) 118383, which would amend land use regulations that pertain to Pedestrian (P) designations and neighborhood commercial zoning districts, and would amend the Official Land Use Map to add P designations in 42 neighborhoods.
Amendments to Lowrise Multi-Family Zoning Regulations
The Seattle City Council is proposing to amend the Land Use Code (Title 23 of the Seattle Municipal Code) to make adjustments and corrections to the regulatory framework for Lowrise zones.