The “For Safe Streets” Report

The City of Seattle has great aspirations to address climate change, make our streets safe for everyone to walk and roll, and expand transit. Unfortunately, over the past two years, we have experienced poor performance in delivering safe streets projects.  At the same time, there  has been an uptick in traffic fatalities and serious injuries.

Whether it’s bad project delivery models, poor management, or leaders failing to support their staff and instead playing politics, it’s clear that the Seattle City Council needs to step-in and the Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) needs to take take corrective action.

That’s why on June 16, 2019, hundreds of caring residents attended The Ride for Safe Streets to call for change.  Now, Seattle City Council is considering the “MASS Transportation Package” and the “Green New Deal” resolution.  Both are positive steps in the right direction.  

The MASS Transportation Package is billed as a work-in progress, with a few proposals now and additional proposals to be unveiled in the future. The package’s call for firm commitments for specific important bikeways and bus lanes to get built and thousands of bike parking corrals to get installed are tangible actions that will address key connectivity, accessibility, and equity issues.  

Future reforms need to address systemic issues of community engagement, planning and engineering, project management, and funding.  Additionally, the MASS proposal to require SDOT to install BMP-planned protected bike lanes with all repaving, transit, and other corridor projects would not have changed the result of Mayor Durkan’s decision to not install bike lanes on 35th Avenue NE.  The current MASS proposals also do not speed up project delivery or identify new funding.

If we are to reach Seattle’s Vision Zero, climate change, and bicycle and transit ridership goals, even bolder, systemic changes are required.  The “For Safe Streets” report attempts to fill in the details of how to address the major systemic issues of policy, project delivery, and funding  to make our streets safer for people who walk, bike, roll, and ride transit. 

The recommendations are rooted in the values of protecting human life, building a more equitable city where all people have safe streets and affordable transportation options, and creating neighborhoods and communities that are genuinely great places to live.  The recommendations aim to create systems, policies, and engagement processes that value the time and energy of thousands of volunteers, stakeholders, community members, and staff, past, present and future.

We hope the recommendations are included in the policies still yet to be unveiled as part of the MASS Transportation Package in the future, and will be adopted and implemented by Seattle City Council and SDOT.

Add your name in support of the “For Safe Streets” report.

About the Report

The “For Safe Streets” Report is a set of 38 transformative recommendations covering three areas:

  • Valuing Community

  • Policies for Safety

  • Prioritizing Funding

Your name will be added to a cover letter in support of the report that will be included when it’s sent to Seattle City Council and other leaders.