How Clearer Cameras Help Clear Streets

Constant innovation is central to our mission of building a more connected city, and SDOT’s Transportation Operations Center (TOC) is always looking for new ways technology can help. We use Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) devices to monitor traffic throughout the city, and then share information on incidents with the public through dynamic message signs (DMS), Twitter, and the Travelers Information Map (where you can see a live feed from cameras).

Over 40 traffic cameras, a key tool for confirming incidents, received a major upgrade in 2016 to give our TOC clearer video feeds and make identifying and reporting incidents easier. This improvement also helps first responders who monitor the feeds see what’s going on, plan ahead, and provide assistance more efficiently.

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To better share this information with the public, we’ve also installed 6 additional dynamic message signs throughout the city to let motorists know of any ongoing issues and plan ahead.

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At SDOT, we use the latest technological innovations to improve our ability to monitor, respond to, and share information about traffic incidents throughout Seattle. Our Intelligent Transportation Systems play a key role in creating a safe, efficient, innovative transportation system that works for all travelers, and we’ll be continuing to develop and upgrade systems next year in 2017. When people know what’s going on in real-time, they can make more informed travel choices.

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Happy Thanksgiving from SDOT!

Happy Thanksgiving from SDOT!

City Offices are Closed November 24 and 25 in observance of the holiday.

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Please enjoy the holidays wherever they take you.

On-street parking is free in Seattle on Thanksgiving Day, November 24.

Please remember that normal pay for street parking remains in effect on Friday, November 25, so make sure you observe time limits and other posted regulations as you would on any other Friday.

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New Restricted Parking Zone and a Change in Hours for Capitol Hill

SDOT has considered input and is creating a new Restricted Parking Zone (RPZ) on Capitol Hill which will be identified as RPZ  32. SDOT is also issuing a change in the hours of RPZ 15. The map below highlights the areas where parking restrictions are changing.

New RPZ: Zone 32 

Zone 32 signs will be installed on the green blocks in mid-2017. Residents in the gray area will receive a letter with instructions for obtaining a Zone 32 permit. The pink blocks will move from Zone 15 to Zone 32. Residents on these blocks will receive further communication about this change.

  • All residents within the gray area will be eligible for Zone 32 permits and guest permits
  • Permits are currently $65 per vehicle for a two-year cycle (discounted permits are available for income eligible households)
  • Zone 32 signs will limit parking for vehicles without Zone 32 permits to 2 hours Monday – Saturday, 7 a.m. – 8 p.m.
  • Zone 32 signs will not be installed adjacent to commercial properties or ground floor retail

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Zone 15

In response to resident feedback, SDOT will leave the 4-hour restriction in place in Zone 15, as opposed to the proposed 2-hour restriction. New Zone 15 signs will be installed on the purple blocks and orange blocks in Spring 2017. The new hours will go into effect at that time, limiting parking for vehicles without Zone 15 permits to 4 hours, Monday – Saturday, 7 a.m. – 8 p.m. If you live on one of the new Zone 15 blocks identified in purple, you will receive a letter with instructions for obtaining a Zone 15 permit before any signs are installed.

Background

SDOT and Sound Transit have been working together to manage on-street parking around the new Capitol Hill light rail station to prevent commuter parking. In July 2016, SDOT shared a plan for a new RPZ in the presently unrestricted area north of E Olive Way/E John St and west of Broadway. SDOT also proposed a change in Zone 15 hours to prevent commuter parking. Comments on the proposed plan were collected in July and September of 2016. Click here to see the mailer sent to residents.

SDOT does not change rates to generate new revenue. Per City policy, SDOT monitors parking conditions in and around all paid parking areas adjusts parking rates (up or down), and paid parking area boundaries and hours to achieve a target of keeping one or two parking spaces available on each block face at all times.

Questions?

Contact capitolhillparking@seattle.gov or Ruth Harper at (206) 684 – 4103. Visit www.seattle.gov/transportation/parking/parkingrpz.htm to see general RPZ program information.

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Remembering Those We’ve Lost

This week, Seattle is observing World Remembrance Day and commemorating the 240 people who died in traffic incidents over the past 10 years. On Thursday, families who have lost loved ones, city employees, and first responders gathered at City Hall at an event organized by Seattle Neighborhood Greenways for a public memorial with silhouette cut-outs to represent those we’ve lost.

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SDOT Traffic Safety Coordinator Jim Curtin speaking at City Hall memorial 11/17

This Sunday, November 20, local Greenways coalition member groups will hold events throughout the city to install the silhouettes as a public reminder, and come together as a community to commit to doing better:

  • Ballard/Aurora/Fremont noon Peddler Brewing Company 1514 NW Leary Way
  • Beacon Hill/Mt. Baker 10AM The Station 2533 16th Ave S
  • Central/Capitol Hill noon Victrola Coffee Roasters 310 E. Pike St.
  • Crown Hill/Broadview noon Holy Grounds 9000 Holman Way NW
  • Downtown/Belltown 10AM Uptown Espresso 2504 4th Ave
  • Lake City/Northgate 10AM Kaffeeklatsch 12513 Lake City Way NE
  • Queen Anne/Magnolia 10AM Starbucks 2135 Queen Anne Ave N
  • Ravenna/Roosevelt 10AM Third Place Cafe 6504 20th Ave NE
  • West Seattle 10AM Ampersand Café 2536 Alki Ave SW
  • Rainier Valley 10:15AM Bike Works 3711 S Hudson St. (back entrance to warehouse)
  • Duwamish Valley noon Oxbow Park (Hat & Boots) 6430 Corson Ave S

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As a city, we’ve committed to end traffic deaths and serious injuries by 2030 through our Vision Zero initiative. These tragedies mostly aren’t “accidents,” but preventable incidents caused by poor behaviors and unforgiving roadway designs.

Earlier this month, we instituted lower speed limits – arterials in central Seattle were reduced from 30mph to 25, residential streets throughout the city from 25mph to 20 – an adjustment proven to increase crash survival rates. And over the last year, we’ve made significant investments in our Safe Routes to School program to make it easier and safer for students to walk and bike. These efforts were funded through the 2015 voter approved Levy to Move Seattle, which has supported safety and infrastructure improvements throughout the city.

By working with community groups, health-care professionals, university researchers, and local corporate partners, we can eliminate death and serious injuries on our streets.

 

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The New 2016-2017 Winter Weather Brochure and Snow Route Maps are here!

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SDOT’s annual Winter Weather brochure has a large map of Seattle’s snow and ice routes, lists important telephone numbers and web sites to use during winter storms, and offers preparedness tips. Here’s a link to our Winter Weather page that has useful information about what to expect when it snows.

During major winter storms, plan your trip by seeing where the snow plows have been and viewing traffic cameras by clicking on the link below:
Winter Weather Response Map

The brochures will be free at Seattle Public Library branches and Neighborhood Service Centers.

This year we will again distribute the brochure to elementary schools in the Seattle public school district for children to take home to their parents.

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Download only the map in English

Download the full brochure in:

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SDOT Mobility Innovations First Forum on Mobility Hubs

SDOT hosted the first Mobility Innovations Forum Monday, the topic Mobility Hubs.

We’re hosting a speaker series on mobility innovations, running through mid-2017 (see below)

The City of Seattle is partnering with transit agencies and private mobility services to develop a network of shared mobility hubs throughout the city, providing better mobility and integrated transportation choices for all. Topics will include mobility hubs, smart mobility strategies for high growth in Seattle, preparing for autonomous vehicles, and making shared transportation equitable.

Scott Kubly, Director of Seattle Department of Transportation; Seleta Reynolds, General Manager of Los Angeles DOT; David Bragdon, Executive Director of TransitCenter; Sharon Feigon, Executive Director at the Shared Use Mobility Center, discussed their thoughts on mobility hubs as Ross Reynolds from KUOW, moderated the conversation.

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Scott Kubly, SDOT Dir; Speakers: Seleta Reynolds; David Bragdon; Sharon Feigon; Ross Reynolds KUOW.

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Scott Kubly , SDOT Dir. addresses attendees alongside featured guests.

Here’s a definition of what Mobility Hubs are:

Mobility hubs provide an integrated suite of transportation services, supporting amenities, and urban design enhancements that reduce the need for single occupant vehicle trips by increasing first mile/last mile access to high-frequency transit stations. Mobility hubs are places of connectivity where different modes of transportation such as walking, biking, ride-sharing, and public transit, cometogether seamlessly at concentrations of employment, housing, shopping, and/ or recreation.

Hub features can include: bikeshare, car share, neighborhood electric vehicles, bike parking, dynamic parking management strategies, real-time traveler information, real-time ride-sharing, demand-based shuttle, bicycle and pedestrian facility improvements, wayfinding, urban design enhancements, and supporting systems like mobile applications, electric vehicle charging, smart intersections, and a universal payment system to make it easy to access a wide range of travel options.

Please join us at the upcoming forums. More details will be posted, we appreciate your participation in the months ahead.

The preliminary schedule for future topics is:

  • January: Smart mobility strategies for high growth Seattle
  • March: Preparing for connected and autonomous vehicles
  • May: Making shared mobility equitable
  • June or July: Rethinking mobility as a service

Questions, please contact Evan Corey: evan.corey@seattle.gov.

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SDOT Mobility Innovations Forum Monday, November 14 at 6 p.m.

SDOT is hosting a speaker series on mobility innovations, running through mid-2017. 

Please join us at the first event on Monday, November 14. The City of Seattle is partnering with transit agencies and private mobility services to develop a network of shared mobility hubs throughout the city, providing better mobility and integrated transportation choices for all. Topics will include mobility hubs, smart mobility strategies for high growth in Seattle, preparing for autonomous vehicles, and making shared transportation equitable.

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Topic: Mobility Hubs
When: November 14, 6:00 PM
Where: Seattle Art Museum (Pletscheeff Auditorium) 1300 1st Ave
Free with RSVP: https://sdot-mobilityinnovations.eventbrite.com

Speakers include:

  • Scott Kubly, Director of Seattle Department of Transportation
  • Seleta Reynolds, General Manager of Los Angeles DOT
  • David Bragdon, Executive Director of TransitCenter
  • Sharon Feigon, Executive Director at the Shared Use Mobility Center
  • Ross Reynolds from KUOW will moderate the conversation.

The preliminary schedule for future topics is:

  • January: Smart mobility strategies for high growth Seattle
  • March: Preparing for connected and autonomous vehicles
  • May: Making shared mobility equitable
  • June or July: Rethinking mobility as a service

Learn about this effort, similar efforts throughout North America, and how mobility hubs can transform the travel experience in the future.

Questions, please contact Evan Corey: evan.corey@seattle.gov.

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Rainier Vista Creates a New Space!

Meaningful space for neighborhoods to share is an important part of community building. SDOT’s Adaptive Streets Program works toward that end, facilitating possibilities like using underutilized right of way for new gathering places. The latest effort came last week in the Rainier Vista neighborhood, with the grand opening of a new Pavement to Parks project.

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Colorful new park space at Rainier Vista!

The project repurposes part of S Genesee St between 29th Avenue S and Jill Place S for an expanded park space, including planters, seating, turf mounds, and a street mural–designed by local youth involved in an arts program through Horn of Africa Services. The project was community-driven and community-designed. Built under SDOT’s Adaptive Streets Program, the project uses low-cost, adaptable materials to test a public space on the street before permanent changes take place.

Here’s a video from our friends at Seattle Channel:

The site was selected for improvements based on neighborhood requests and a very engaged and highly diverse Rainier Vista community joined together to create the project.

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SDOT Director Kubly and Mayor Murray at the ribbon-cutting ceremony.

For the November 3 ribbon-cutting event, the Seattle Housing Authority (SHA) Rainier Vista community was joined by Mayor Ed Murray, SHA Director Andrew Lofton, an SHA youth community leader, and SDOT Director Scott Kubly to celebrate the amazing work of so many.

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Your new Vision Zero speed limits

What is happening?

Beginning November 7th, new speed limits will be going into effect for city streets.  This is part of Seattle’s Vision Zero plan to end traffic deaths and serious injuries on city streets by 2030.

Speed limits for the streets in central Seattle (indicated in blue in the map below) will be reduced to 25 mph. The non-arterial (a.k.a. residential street) speed limit will be reduced from 25 mph to 20 mph.

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Why is this happening?

While Seattle is one of the safest cities in the country, each year about 20 people are killed in traffic collisions and another 150 are seriously injured. Their lives are cut short or changed forever, impacting their families, friends, and broader communities. One life lost or altered is one life too many.

Speed plays a role all serious injury and fatal collisions.  Someone who is walking and is struck by a vehicle going at 20 mph has a 90% chance of surviving the crash.  The chances of survival are reduced to 50% when a vehicle going +10 mph faster.

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By lowering the speed limits, we will be:

  • Creating consistent speed limits.
  • Enhancing safety for everyone, especially people walking and biking.
  • Reducing the severity of all collisions.

What is SDOT doing to let people know about the new speed limits?

To let Seattle residents and people traveling into the city know about the new speed limits, we will be:

  • Adding new or altering existing signs.
  • Launching a comprehensive public education campaign.
  • Enforcing the new speeds through the high visibility patrols (the Seattle Police Department will issue warnings for a period of two weeks to one month).

Drivers traveling from outside the city will see either of these two signs indicating our city’s lowered speed limits:

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Drivers will see 25 mph signs when using arterial streets to travel central Seattle:

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Where can I learn more about Vision Zero?

You can find out more about Vision Zero. Also know that yard signs are a great way to encourage safety along your street.

We also have a Vision Zero dashboard  and safety resources  that you can share with your friends, family, and co-workers to promote safety all around you.

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International Walk/Bike to School Day

Today is International Walk/Bike to School Day! Students throughout Seattle are enjoying our city’s Safe Routes to School by walking and biking to school today, part of our program to promote community, healthy lifestyles, and a cleaner environment.

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Here at SDOT, we developed school walk and bike maps to help you and your child determine the best route to safely walk and bike to school. These maps highlight street safety features, bicycle facilities, intersection controls, and other neighborhood destinations.

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Our Safe Routes to School program is continuing to make getting to school easier for students throughout the city, and we look forward to seeing even more kids walking or biking! We even have free incentive packs of stickers, temporary tattoos, and more to encourage kids to walk and bike.

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If you’d like to throw your own event celebrating Walktober, check out Feet First’s guide to getting something started at your school.

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