UPDATE: The ordinance and both resolutions passed unanimously. Details on amendments in updates below.
The City Council will vote today on an ordinance and set of resolutions that would all but require the Seattle Department of Transportation to build planned bike lanes when repaving streets, would dramatically increase the bike parking supply and would request additional funding in the mayor’s budget to build key southend and downtown bike lanes that were left out of the mayor’s most recent short term bike plan.
The Council meets 2 p.m. at City Hall today (September 3). You can watch online via Seattle Channel. I will update this post after the meeting, so stay tuned. UPDATE: Passed!
As we reported previously, the bike lane ordinance (CB 119601) would effectively strengthen the city’s existing complete streets ordinance by stating, “Whenever the Seattle Department of Transportation constructs a major paving project along a segment of the protected bicycle lane network, a protected bicycle lane with adequate directionality shall be installed along that segment.”
The ordinance does create an out for SDOT if the department determines a bike lane to be infeasible, but they would need to justify the decision to the City Council’s Transportation Committee. (Full Disclosure: My spouse Kelli works as a Legislative Assistant to Councilmember Mike O’Brien.)
UPDATE: A Councilmember Lisa Herbold amendment (with Councilmember Debora Juarez’s support) to water down the ordinance did not make it to a vote. A note was added that requires broad community outreach.
The two resolutions up for a vote are budget requests to the mayor as city leaders head into its annual budget season. Resolution 31898 seeks funding to build an additional 3,000 bike parking spaces, mostly in the form of on-street bike parking corrals, to support parking private bikes as well as shared bikes and scooters. This is key to the city’s goal of reducing sidewalk blockages from dockless bikes (and, soon, scooters).
Resolution 31894 seeks funding to add a list of vital bike projects in the southend and downtown that did not make the mayor’s cut in her latest short-term bike plan. Specifically, the resolution highlights:
- Beacon Ave S Segment 1 (S 39th St to Myrtle St)
- Beacon Ave S Segment 2 (Myrtle St to S Spokane St)
- Beacon Ave S Segment 3 (S Spokane St to Jose Rizal Bridge)
- Georgetown to Downtown
- Martin Luther King Jr Way (Rainier Ave to Henderson St)
- Two-way protected bike lane on 4th Ave (Main St to Vine St)
- Alaskan Way (Virginia St to Elliott Bay Trail)
UPDATE: Two amendments passed: Councilmember Herbold added the Georgetown-to-South Park Trail to the list. Councilmember Bagshaw added Vine St from 2nd Ave to Thomas St.