The City of Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) has secured funding to review and design an extension of the First Hill Streetcar Line into the Broadway Business District. This project would extend the line into Broadway’s retail core.
On December 13, 2012, SDOT hosted an open house to introduce the Broadway Streetcar Extension to the public. The event was attended by approximately 100 Broadway residents, business owners and stakeholders.
Attendees learned about the project from display boards, handouts, project staff, and the City Council representatives in attendance.
Key objectives of the open house were:
- Raise public awareness and understanding of the extension’s purpose and of its place in the streetcar network.
- Provide information to the general public about the preliminary designs and engineering concepts of the proposed extension.
- Collect feedback regarding the planned extension, possible alignment and terminus options.
- Solicit comments and feedback from the general public about the preliminary extension plans.
The comments collected from the public were diverse, however, several topics emerged:
- Extension Design Option #1 Favored: Respondents favored Option #1 for the design of the Broadway Streetcar Extension, noting that it maintained street parking while also giving bicyclists access to Broadway.
- Impacts of Route Alternatives: Opinions varied on the most appealing route alternative, but there was nearly universal agreement on the need for further research into the traffic impacts of each of the three options presented at the open house.
- Lack of Importance Regarding Left Turns: Attendees rated left turns less vital a consideration than most of the other issues brought to their attention.
- Longer Extension More Appealing: An overwhelming majority of respondents noted their preference for the Broadway Extension to terminate at Prospect Street. Several stated that they would like the Extension to go even further than Prospect Street.
- Importance of Bicycle Safety: A significant number of respondents noted the importance of bicycle safety. It was noted repeatedly on comment cards, and the survey respondents marked it as one of the more important aspects of streetcar design.
The track alignment and terminus options developed are available online at: http://www.seattlestreetcar.org/broadway.htm
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For more information about the First Hill Streetcar visit the project’s website at: www.seattlestreetcar.org
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