View Ridge Community Council Calls on City Hall for Compromise
In a letter addressed to interim director of SDOT, Goran Sparrman and copied to Mayor Jenny Durkan, VRCC co-presidents plead:
“We understand that many residents and business owners have attempted to explain their objections on multiple occasions to your staff assigned to the project.
Unfortunately, they report feeling that none of their comments have been taken seriously and that no attempt at compromise has been made.
We recognize that no solution is going to completely please everyone. However, making a good faith effort at a compromise that addresses the concerns of opponents while still fulfilling the safety objectives of the plan is, we believe, the right thing to do.”
Read the full letter here. We too call on the City to make a good faith effort at a compromise that reflects the diverse needs of all who use 35th Ave. NE, including our local business owners.
“This isn’t just about parking. It’s about people.”
We love being cc’d on your letters to the Mayor, and we also follow comments submitted in response to media stories about Save 35th Ave NE. The following comment in response to a slanted article in the Stranger is exceptional and worthy of sharing with you. An excerpt:
"This isn’t just about parking. It’s about people. What best serves the needs of the greatest number of people living in a community?
The cycling contingent represents roughly 3% of the commuter population, a figure that has not only plateaued, but is in decline in Seattle, as well as many other cities, including model urbanist utopia, Copenhagen. Despite the city’s investment of time, money and resources, the bike lobby hasn’t been able to significantly grow their numbers over the past few years, even in a boomtown environment attracting an influx of their target demographic—young, white males. And let’s be clear: Of that tiny fraction of the commuter population that cycles, the vast majority—routinely 75-80% by most estimates I’ve seen--are white males. How do you define privilege? Were the angles of this investment observed through the lens we use to examine most public policy these days rather than as an approved plank in a so-called "progressive" platform, it would be construed as, at best, needless and wasteful given the lackluster numbers and, worse, racist, sexist, ageist and ableist in light of the primary constituency." Read the full letterhere.
KIRO TV Covers Firecracker Incident at 35th Ave NE Work Site
Last Friday, KIRO TV reported on the Seattle Police Department’s investigation of firecrackers found four weeks ago on construction equipment being used to improve utilities on 35th Ave NE.
In a balanced three-minute segment, KIRO noted our coalition’s opposition to SDOT’s proposal to remove 60% of the parking on 35th and reduce traffic flow to a single lane each direction in order to install fifty blocks of bike lanes.
In a brief statement, a supporter of the bike lanes stated, “I don’t think a rational person would do this.” Of course, we agree.
Sgt. Sean Whitcomb of the Seattle Police Department said, "It's a very serious investigation for us, and while we're not sure what the motive is, we do know the placement did create a degree of concern from the construction workers."
We responded with the statement above, denouncing such activity.
KIRO news also reported that construction workers had been subject to verbal abuse, presumably from area neighbors. Please remember that construction personnel are simply doing their job; they are in no way responsible for Councilman Rob Johnson and SDOT’s plan to change 35th.
We followed up with SPD seeking new information. They reported to us that the investigation is still open. If you have any information, please call (206) 625-5011. If you missed the story, you can view it here.
Safe Seattle Highlights 35th Ave NE Bike Lane Debacle
This week, Safe Seattle shared a post featuring a video titled, "Project Bottleneck", created by one of their page administrators, highlighting some of the proposed changes to 35th Ave NE. Check it out.
In last week’s newsletter story, “We Denounce Any Illegality or Incivility—Or Related Blame From City Hall”, we mischaracterized a post at the Safe Seattle Facebook page about the discovery of fireworks on a 35th Ave NE work site.
In their post, Safe Seattle said: “Such actions are likely to generate negative publicity for bike lane opponents and will strengthen the city in its resolve to go through with the project.”
Safe Seattle did not intimate it was a “ploy by folks at City Hall to generate negative publicity...” We did, maintaining that our detractors seized the opportunity to blame our coalition for the misbehavior, as this email exchange with the Mayor’s Deputy confirms. The record has now been set straight, all the way around, especially thanks to the responsible journalism of KIRO TV.