Who Is Save 35th?
One of the questions we receive via email is “who is Save 35th?” More specifically – “who is part of the steering committee working behind the scenes?”
The truth is – Save 35th is you:
The 5,033 of you who have signed the petition; the 3,000 plus letters and emails you have written and sent to the Mayor, Rob Johnson, and SDOT; the hundreds of phone calls you have made to the Mayor’s Office and other representatives at City Hall; the 57 businesses, their owners and employees along our ‘Main Street’; the five northeast community associations who have written letters of support for Save 35th: Hawthorne Hills, Laurelhurst, Meadowbrook, Northeast District, and Windermere; the droves of you who purchased yards signs and put them up and replaced them when they ‘disappeared’; and the many more of you who attended community meetings and rallies.
This is what a community moved to action looks like.
Back to that question about the steering committee. There are several of your neighbors who, beginning almost a year ago, on October 26, 2017, came together out of concern for the proposed “paving plan” for 35th. They formed an ad hoc steering committee with only one purpose: to bring the City to the table—to ask they stop, look around, listen to our concerns, and hear us out.
The steering committee includes the following neighbors from Wedgwood, Ravenna, Bryant, View Ridge, Alicia Park and Matthews Beach:
The mediation team comprises six steering committee members (one of whom is a local business owner and another who is an avid cyclist), and two more small business owners, for a total of eight representatives from our community.
Your actions, engagement and continued support demonstrate that a community moved to action can impact change. Working together we have arrived at this time and place: mediation; a spring delay for restriping 35th Ave. (more below); and the creation of a political action committee (more below also). Still, we can’t be lulled into complacency by these developments. We need to remain vigilant and engaged.
Thanks to each of you, our neighbors, for your many contributions.
Encouraging News from SDOT
Below is an email from SDOT’s 35th Ave. NE project engineer to one of our neighbors who lives south of 55th, indicating that bike lane striping on 35th is “delayed until the spring . . . at the direction of the mayor’s office.”
We are pleased by the Mayor’s commitment to “community engagement”—specifically the facilitated conversations we are having with City Hall this fall, which we shared about at the last community meeting and wrote about in our last newsletter.
Here’s that SDOT email:
"We are about to update our public messaging so I apologize that this hasn’t gone out to you yet. Due to continuing community engagement, permanent striping on 35th will be delayed until spring. This is at the direction of the mayor’s office out of sensitivity to the discussions they are having with Wedgwood residents and businesses. Striping is weather dependent, and we are approaching the time of year when we are unlikely to get dry, warm weather needed to ensure good adherence to the pavement.
Only the striping at the 5-way U-Village NE 45th/Mary Gates Drive intersection will be completed this fall (assuming we get a string of good weather days). That part is being installed because it is not changing from what was there previously. Until early next year, only the centerline, stop bars, and crosswalks will be marked along 35th.
Again, I’m sorry about the change of plans.
MariLyn J. Yim, P.E."
Stay tuned for more information about SDOT’s latest construction plans and our conversations with City Hall in coming weeks.
“Neighborhoods for Smart Streets” Is Now Online
Our new PAC now has $10,000 in its bank account!
You can still make your donation by mail.
Send your check or money order to:
Neighborhoods for Smart Streets
PO Box 15288
Seattle, WA 98115 Please note: Public disclosure regulations require that your name and address be included with your donation. Donations over $100 must also include: Employer, Occupation and City of Employer. We are unable to accept anonymous donations.
With our sights set on the 2019 City Council elections, please help us reach our initial, $15,000 fundraising goal.
Seattle Bike Lane SEPA Exemption
Last week, District 5 Councilwoman Debora Juarez, while questioning skyrocketing bike lane costs citywide, criticized the City’s bike lane exemption under the State Environmental Protection Act (SEPA)—and rightly so. (Watch her here at 1:46:00).
A prior City Council passed a law exempting bike lane projects—like the 35th Ave. rechannelization—from environmental review in accordance with SEPA.
That means reconfiguring a street like our "Main Street", which accommodates 20,000 cars and buses per day, would not require thorough review of impacts to transportation, transit, traffic, parking, businesses, schools, churches, etc.
That is not good law, policy, or government.
We commend Councilwoman Juarez for bringing this reality to light. If you haven’t yet, please email her a message of thanks and support at Debora.Juarez@seattle.gov