Not long ago, NE 75th Street was just another dangerous street cutting through a Seattle neighborhood. But a March tragedy at NE 75th and 33rd Ave NE left two grandparents dead, their daughter-in-law and baby infant in critical condition and a community searching for answers.
Since then, NE 75th Street has become a symbol for unacceptable roadway danger, and the city has promised action to make it safer. Speeding emphasis patrols and flashing crosswalk beacons are already in place, and the city set to hold public meetings to develop a larger road safety plan to be implemented this year and early 2014.
The first public input meeting is tonight (Tuesday), 6 – 8:30 p.m. at Ravenna-Eckstein Community Center.
An image on the SDOT website (see above) shows a problem that is all too common in Seattle: NE 75th Street’s design has not been significantly updated since 1957. The neighborhood has changed dramatically since the 1950s, as have modern safe street design standards, and it is borderline negligent for the city to allow such outdated infrastructure to remain in use. Just like fire codes have changed to require old buildings to install sprinkler systems and other safety features, our streets require complete streets updates to ensure that every person using them can easily and confidently do so without fear of death or injury.
But this won’t happen unless the city hears loud and clear from the people that we demand it. Start by getting to an upcoming meeting listed below. First NE 75th, then the dangerous street by your home and the street by your co-worker’s home and the street by your friend’s home and the street by your mother’s home…
NE 75th Street plan outline, from the SDOT website:
A series of community meetings have been scheduled to listen to community concerns, share traffic data, and develop strategies to lower vehicle speeds and reduce collisions. These meetings are open to the general public and all are welcome.
Issue Identification Meetings – April-May 2013
Purpose: Review existing conditions and traffic data, discuss toolbox of potential improvements, and hear concerns and ideas from residents
- Tuesday, April 23rd, 6-8:30PM,
Ravenna-Eckstein Community Center, 6535 Ravenna Ave NE
- Thursday, April 25th, 2-4PM,
Wedgwood Presbyterian Church, 8008 35th Ave NE
- Wednesday, May 1st, 7-9PM,
Calvary Christian Assembly, 6801 Roosevelt Way NE
Conceptual Designs – May-June 2013
SDOT will synthesize community input and define roadway improvement alternatives based on community input and data
Design Alternatives Review Meetings – July 2013
SDOT will share conceptual improvement options and seek feedback from the community
Implementation – August 2013
- Short-term improvements, such as changes to signs and pavement markings, will begin
- Design for civil improvements will begin with construction/installation in 2014
- SDOT will develop a funding strategy for longer term improvements
Evaluation – Ongoing
- Seek and respond to community feedback
- Collect and evaluate speed, volume and collision data at one-year intervals
- Make adjustments if needed