Neighbors, employees and patient families can look forward to the streets around Seattle Children’s becoming easier and more comfortable to travel. After gathering and evaluating information for more than a year, we completed the final report for our Livable Streets Initiative. It paves the way for building five projects this year – including a new traffic signal at 40th Ave. NE and Sand Point Way NE and a bidirectional cycle-track with separate paths for bikes and pedestrians along our frontage with Sand Point Way NE.
Seattle Children’s and the city of Seattle will collaborate later this spring to conduct outreach to residents and businesses in the surrounding community about the proposed improvements.
The projects address the themes that emerged as we met with the community: improve access to the Burke-Gilman Trail, develop safer crossings at major arterials, and create streets where traffic moves at slower speeds and pedestrians and bicyclists are better protected.
“We’re excited to see our collaboration with the community and the city of Seattle enter this new phase and look forward to the great improvements that are on the way,” says Paulo Nunes-Ueno, who leads transportation planning at Children’s. “These projects will make the neighborhood more walkable and bikable, but also healthier because they’ll help people stay active and reduce pollution by providing an alternative to driving.”
Besides the new traffic signal at 40th Ave. NE and Sand Point Way NE, proposed Livable Streets projects include:
- 39th Ave. NE: neighborhood greenway – a quiet street with improvements for pedestrian and bike safety
- NE 50th Street and 40th Ave. NE: curb extensions to reduce crossing distances and connecting to a new sidewalk on NE 50th Street
- NE 45th Street between 40th Ave NE and 47th Ave NE: curb extensions to reduce crossing distances
- NE 70th Street and Sand Point Way NE: new sidewalk apron
We have committed to spend nearly $4 million on neighborhood transportation improvements as part of our 20-year master plan and to spend an additional sum to support the 40th Ave. NE and Sand Point Way NE project. Sand Point Way NE is a barrier between the east and west halves of the neighborhood with Children’s on one side and the Burke-Gilman Trail on the other.
Highlights of New Traffic Signal
The traffic signal and redesigned intersection at 40th Ave. NE will make it safer to cross the four lanes of traffic at this busy spot. The new intersection features many elements that maximize safety and improve operations, including video detection to allow more time for slower pedestrians to clear the intersection or to shorten pedestrian signal time if pedestrians and cyclists clear the intersection quickly, allowing traffic to move quicker. Planning for the trail connection will begin soon. “The whole thing is going to be a night-and-day improvement,” Nunes-Ueno says.
For more information visit our Livable Streets page at http://construction.seattlechildrens.org/livablestreets/
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