NE Ravenna Blvd Protected Bike Lanes Update

SDOT crews have substantially completed the upgrading of buffered bike lanes to protected bike lanes, on NE Ravenna Blvd from E Green Lake Way N to University Way NE and along 15th Ave NE from Cowen PL NE to NE 62nd ST. Crews also improved intersections along the way and at the north end of the Cowen Park Bridge, they’ll installed signs and markings to connect to the signed bike route on 20th Ave NE.  These improvements will increase safety for all users:

  • People biking – support people of all ages and abilities riding bikes
  • People walking – separate pedestrians from bicycles
  • People driving – provide predictability within the street


Project map


For additional information about this project or similar ones visit our Bicycle Master Plan page.



From E Green Lake Way N to Brooklyn Ave NE

Bicyclist rides EB towards NE 65

A bicyclist riding EB on NE Ravenna Blvd towards NE 65th St

Crews updated the previous buffered bike lane to a protected bike lane by adding white posts in the buffer that existed previously. This improvement increases safety by reducing the risk of bicycle and car collisions and adding predictability on the road.

Improvements from Brooklyn Ave NE to University Way NE

EB towards University Ave

A Biker EB on NE Ravenna Blvd towards University Ave NE

Crews consolidated the eastbound on-street parking to the north side of the road and extended the installation of the eastbound protected bike lane adjacent to the median. Similar to the rest of the corridor, the previous westbound buffered bike was upgraded to a protected bike lane by adding white posts in the buffer.

Improvements from University Way NE to 15th Ave NE

Kids walking

Kids walking and a biker EB on NE Ravenna Blvd near 15th Ave NE

Crews removed six parking spaces along eastbound NE Ravenna Blvd to continue the protected bike lane to 15th Ave NE, making it safer and more predictable for all travelers. The existing trail in the median is now a convenient connection for bicyclists traveling westbound toward Green Lake.

Improvements along Cowen Pl NE between University Way NE and 15th Ave NE

EB along Cowen

Eastbound protected bike lane along Cowen Pl NE

Crews installed new protected bike lanes along Cowen Pl NE, while accommodating travel lanes and preserving parking.

Improvements along Cowen Park Bridge

Cowen Park Bridge

Protected bike lanes along Cowen Park Bridge

Crews installed protected bike lanes along 15th Ave NE which created a connection between Cowen Pl NE and NE 62nd St.

Improvements along NE 62nd St from 15th Ave NE to 20th Ave NE

Pavement Markings

Pavement markings along NE 62nd ST

To connect the protected bike lanes along the Cowen Park Bridge to the existing signed and popular bike route on 20th Ave NE, crews marked sharrow pavement markings and signage on NE 62nd between 15th Ave NE and 20th Ave NE. This will remind people driving westbound to expect people bicycling in both directions between 15th Ave NE and 20th Ave NE.

Project funding

This project was locally funded by the nine-year voter approved Bridging the Gap Levy.

Project Library

Project contacts

Adan Carrillo, Community Outreach Specialist at or (206) 684-8105

Seattle Announces Safe Routes to School Action Plan

SDOT Director Scott Kubly joined Mayor Ed Murray, Seattle Public Schools and community members to discuss Seattle’s Safe Routes to School Action Plan.

Here is a brief video of the announcement:

The announcement was made at Sacajawea Elementary School in north Seattle, one of 12 locations where SDOT completed Safe Routes to School projects in 2015, which include new sidewalks and crossing improvements. The Mayor’s proposed 2016 budget allocates $5.8 million to support Safe Route to School projects at another 9 schools.

Over the past ten years, more elementary students have been walking and biking to school, growing from 15 percent in 2005 to 24 percent in 2015.

As part of the action plan announced today, every third, fourth and fifth grade Seattle public elementary school student will receive walking and biking safety education through their physical education class. A new partnership between SDOT, Seattle Public Schools and Cascade Bicycle Club will deliver that opportunity beginning next year. Only half of Seattle public elementary schools receive bike safety education, and no formal pedestrian safety education program exists.

Safe Routes to School is funded by fines from the school speed zone camera program, state and federal grants, and the Bridging the Gap transportation levy, which expires this year. Seattle’s school zone speed camera program has generated $16 million for the Safe Routes to School program since 2012.

To protect more children walking and biking to and from school, SDOT and the Seattle Police Department recently installed school zone speed cameras near six additional schools, bringing the total number of Seattle school zones covered by cameras to 14.

Drivers are becoming more aware of new cameras. Over the last two years, the average number of traffic violations per camera per day has dropped 64 percent and those drivers don’t get repeat citations; in addition the average speeds in these zones have decreased by four percent.

Safe Routes to School is a core component of Seattle’s Vision Zero plan to end traffic deaths and serious injuries by 2030.

Download the full Safe Routes to School Action Plan.

For more information about Vision Zero, visit

Please join SDOT’s Open Houses 10/19 & 10/21 and Help Plan Upgrades for Seattle’s Trails

Walking and biking are the way many of us get around, and are zero-emission solutions that are also healthy travel options. The city is working to create a high-quality pedestrian and bicycle network that connects to places people want to go.

Please join SDOT at our Seattle Trails Upgrade Plan Open House on Monday, October 19/Wednesday October 21 to share your input on potential trail improvements and priorities.

This past summer, SDOT and Alta Planning + Design teams used a modified road bike affectionately called FrankenBike to map 40 miles of Seattle’s paved trails. With technology such as helmet-mounted video cameras and a customized tablet computer, teams recorded field observations on the spot. The data will contribute to the Trails Upgrade Plan that will make trails safer and more appealing to people who frequent them.

The FrankenBike helps to catalog trail attributes like pavement quality, intersection conditions, and obstacles and amenities.

The FrankenBike helps to catalog trail attributes like pavement quality, intersection conditions, and obstacles and amenities.

Data isn’t enough to plan improvements, we also value your opinions! Last month, we asked folks for feedback and suggestions to improve their trail experience. Using the technical data we collected and the communities input, we have developed recommendations to share at two open houses on Monday, October 19/Wednesday October 21 . We hope you join the conversation on how we can maintain and build safer, more comfortable trails.

For more information on the Seattle Trails Upgrade Plan, visit us here.

SDOT Launches Capital Projects Dashboard

SDOT recently launched the Capital Projects Dashboard, an interactive site designed to provide key project status information on current large transportation projects. Project information will be updated monthly, drawing from various sources such as the city’s financial management system and SDOT’s project management and controls program.

The Dashboard offers a quick snap-shot view of a major projects budget, spending, and timeline information on city transportation projects greater than $500,000. Project information will be updated monthly, drawing from various sources such as the city’s financial management system and SDOT’s project management and controls program.


SDOT is advancing the goal of increased transparency on the work the city is doing to keep goods and people moving.  This Dashboard complements Performance Seattle and Open Budget, the City’s other interactive tools that use data to track performance and finances. Together, these tools bring an unprecedented level of transparency into the work that Seattle is doing to keep people and goods moving throughout a growing city.

Questions or comments about this dashboard should be directed to Terry Martin at Terry.Martin@Seattle.govQuestions or comments about projects?

Getting Around Town this Fall


Now that school’s back in session, many students have a regular transportation route established. If you’re looking for new ways to get to class or backup plans in case your trip is interrupted, check out a couple of options:

Take to the sidewalks

If you live close enough to your destination, we encourage you to travel using the sidewalks. This SDOT Pedestrian Map will give you multiple routes you can take throughout the city, so you can exercise as little or as much as you’d prefer.

Ride a bike or use a bike share network

Another mode of transportation to consider is bicycles. For traveling downtown, you can take advantage of the Second Avenue protected bikes lanes. If you’re near Ravenna, try out the new PBL installed on NE Ravenna Boulevard. To travel on Capitol Hill, we recommend taking the Broadway PBL. You can view maps of more protected bike lanes here.

You can also participate in Seattle’s bike sharing system, Pronto. With 50 stations throughout the city, you can check out bikes every day of the week! To sign up for Pronto bike share click here.

Consider transit

Transit allows travelers to bus in, around, and out of Seattle. To help plan your trip, use this Trip Planner to find the best times to leave and arrive at your destinations. If you have a smartphone, the mobile applications One Bus Away and Transit App are great resources to see trip times, potential routes, and maps.


If it makes more sense to drive, a good way to reduce delays and speed up your trip may be to carpool. The fewer cars on the road, the less congestion there will be! Hop in with a few (or a lot) of friends, and your trip could be a little less stressful.

SDOT wishes you happy travels, and a great school year!

Greenwood Transit and Sidewalk Project Beginning Soon

Construction is scheduled to begin in early October on the Greenwood Transit & Sidewalk Project.

Greenwood Avenue North

Greenwood Avenue North


New sidewalks, planting strips, and curbs will be constructed on the east side of Greenwood Ave N between N 92nd St and N 105th St, an important neighborhood arterial.

The addition of six foot sidewalks along with a five foot planting strip and ADA compliant curb ramps will create a much safer and more pleasant experience for pedestrians.  (Unfortunately, funding limitations prevents construction on the west side of the street, although much of this stretch already has sidewalks.)

In addition, in-lane bus islands with new shelters and lighting will be added at the intersections of N 92nd St and N 97th St (both north and southbound), permitting buses to load and unload without leaving the travel lane.

Such in-lane bus stops shorten the amount of time the bus spends at the stop, thereby increasing bus efficiency and reliability.  Other bus stop closures and relocations will improve bus stop spacing.

No changes will be made to Greenwood Avenue itself or to the existing bike lanes that run both north and southbound.

The $3.5 million transit and sidewalk project is possible with funding from the Neighborhood Street Fund Program, the Bridging the Gap Levy, and a grant from the State’s Transportation Improvement Board. The project is expected to be completed by next Spring.




For more details:


Fall has Arrived and Winter is Just Around the Corner, Let’s All be Prepared

Fall has arrived and the sunny days are getting shorter as Winter is just around the corner. This is a great time to prepare by making sure that you have alternate commute plans in place such as which buses will operate during weather events, and if you have your snow kit in your vehicle if
measurable snow falls.

The National Weather Service has predicted an El Nino winter lasting through Spring, and UW Professor Cliff Mass recently blogged about it here. Though a warmer and drier winter is predicted, preparing for the unexpected is always a good plan.

snow cars (rs)

Here’s a Vehicle preparedness Checklist:

  • Warm clothes in trunk
  • Chains or other traction devices in trunk
  • Full gas tank
  • Sand/shovel in trunk
  • Window ice scraper
  • Flares, flashlight in trunk
  • Antifreeze
  • Family emergency plan
  • Familiarity with school and daycare plans
  • Alternative shelter plans
  • Alternative transportation arrangements
  • Identified snow routes
  • Bus timetables


SDOT works closely with King County Metro Transit, the Seattle School District, local universities, hospitals, and major employers to ensure our snow-fighting work maintains mobility for people and goods, and access to the region. The snow route map shows where we will focus our snow-fighting efforts. Those streets will be treated with de-icer and plowed when the storm hits. Now is a good time to plan routes to get to work, the grocery store, child care and medical appointments.

Winter Storms – Here’s Our Plan

In Seattle, winter can bring heavy rain, high winds, ice and snow.  We’re monitoring conditions.

  • Our staff follows weather reports 24 hours a day, all year long, with a direct line to the National Weather Service and live Doppler radar feeds.
  • We use a forecasting tool developed with the University of Washington called SNOWWATCH to learn how a storm will most likely affect different neighborhoods. This information helps determine where the crews will be needed first.
  • Our computerized sensors located on city bridges, and also ground surface sensors, provide timely and accurate air and roadway surface temperatures.
  • We use real-time, live-streaming cameras to see actual conditions on key streets. You can see the camera views on SDOT’s website,


The City of Seattle takes a proactive approach, using best practices to respond to snow and ice:

  • SDOT crews use trucks fitted with plows and salt-spreaders to keep major streets clear.
  • When conditions allow, the crews pre-treat key streets and bridges with salt brine before the snow starts falling to help prevent ice from forming.
  • As the snow begins to fall, the crews continue to drive their routes, treating the roadway with salt brine or granular salt where needed. When approximately one inch of snow has accumulated, they begin plowing.
  • During a snow event, a Global Positioning Satellite (GPS) system tracks the locations of the trucks.  The Winter Weather Response Map on SDOT’s website shows where the trucks are at the current time and also which streets the trucks have already serviced. During a major storm you will be able to see the map on our website at


When Storms are Headed Our Way – We’re Preparing

We will plow major streets. These are the streets that are most important for getting to major public institutions such as hospitals and schools; the streets that are most frequently used by police, fire trucks and buses; and streets leading to Seattle’s major employers. We do not plow non-arterial streets.

  • We start preparing for winter in the summer, training staff, calibrating equipment and working with local agency partners.
  • When high winds or heavy rain are forecast, our crews are ready to remove fallen trees from the road, and to repair signs and signals.
  • Our supplies of granular salt and salt brine are ready to help keep ice from forming on main city streets and bridges.

snow plows

Update: Public Input Period Extended through October 15th on Potential Changes to Ship Canal Bridges’ Opening Restrictions  

SDOT is extending the public input period through October 15th on potential changes to the Ship Canal Bridges and opening restrictions related to them. 

SDOT is seeking comment from the maritime community, and community members who drive, walk or bike, whether the City should seek US Coast Guard approval to change current rules on when Ship Canal bridges must be opened upon request. In addition, SDOT is interested in hearing what additional restrictions might be warranted, if any.

SDOT has received a high volume of public feedback and wants to extend the opportunity. Please visit this link to share your input:

open bridge

The City owns and operates the Ballard, Fremont, and University bridges, while the Washington State Department of Transportation owns and operates the Montlake Bridge. As the Ship Canal is defined by federal law as a navigable waterway, the US Coast Guard has regulatory authority over these bridges. A number of years ago the Coast Guard granted the City the authority to keep the bridges closed on weekdays from 7 a.m. to 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. (The bridges must still be opened during these hours for large commercial vessels.)

SDOT Blog _Bridge 0pening RESIZED

While the number of bridge openings has remained fairly constant in recent years, the impacts of bridge openings have become more pronounced and problematic, especially with longer morning and afternoon commute periods.

With the average bridge opening lasting approximately five minutes, hundreds of vehicles can back up for a given rush hour opening. The more cars, trucks and buses that back up, the longer it takes for them to clear. Buses run behind schedule, commuters find that it takes longer to get to work or back home, and many delayed drivers leave their motors running, spewing polluting emissions into the atmosphere.

SDOT expects to petition the Coast Guard for a change in restrictions on when these bridges must be opened upon demand but is seeking public input before doing so. Interested citizens are asked to share their thoughts with SDOT about whether expanded restrictions are warranted, and what they might look like.

As the graph below illustrates for the Ballard Bridge from August 20th to 26th, 2014, the number of bridge openings is greatest at the same time vehicular traffic is heaviest. For example, during the period from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m., there were 11 weekday bridge openings that week, or an average of two each day, and approximately 61 percent of Ballard Bridge openings that month were for sailboats.

During that same one hour period each day, some 2,600 vehicles crossed the bridge. This situation leads to backups that often extend as far south as Dravus Street and as far north as NW 65th Street. These delays take considerable time to clear, sometimes occurring just as the next opening is requested.

An illustrative graph for a one week period last August at the Ballard Bridge. The number of bridge openings is heaviest at the same time the vehicular traffic load is at its highest. For example, during the period from 6 to 7 PM, there were 11 weekday bridge openings that week, or an average of two each day. During that same one hour period about 2,600 vehicles crossed the bridge daily.

An illustrative graph for a one week period last August at the Ballard Bridge. The number of bridge openings is heaviest at the same time the vehicular traffic load is at its highest. For example, during the period from 6 to 7 PM, there were 11 weekday bridge openings that week, or an average of two each day. During that same one hour period about 2,600 vehicles crossed the bridge daily.




How to Submit a Request to SDOT? Your Help Keeps Seattle Moving!

Maintaining a first-rate transportation system in our city requires community involvement. We appreciate the communities’ time and efforts when community members contact the city with information that helps SDOT keep Seattle moving. If you have a transportation-related concern or request, here are ways you can connect with us to let us know.

Seattle 9-15

What are road related things I can report to SDOT?

Using this form, you can report the following to SDOT online:

  • Pothole locations
  • Street sign and traffic signal maintenance (damaged and malfunctioning)
  • Damaged sidewalks
  • Overgrown vegetation in SDOT-maintained public right-of-ways
  • Sidewalk or street obstructions


For a catch-all reporting system, we check out our mobile phone app Find It, Fix It for reporting when you’re on the go. Find It, Fix It also allows one to report certain concerns like graffiti or parking enforcement issues to the Seattle Police Department, or reach other city departments such as Seattle Public Utilities.

What can I request from SDOT?

In addition to reporting, you can also request various services from SDOT, including:  

  • ADA technologies
  • Safe Routes to School improvements
  • Traffic calming evaluations

To request any of these or for general inquiries, please visit our Customer Request page here.

Not sure where to report?

If you aren’t sure where to file a report or request, we are also available via phone or email.

You can call SDOT at (206) 684-ROAD (7623) or send an email to

For additional SDOT contact information, please visit our directory here.

Thank you for helping keep Seattle safe and accessible for everyone!

Noticed these around town? A guide to street colors

SDOT strives to make the roads safe for all travelers. To achieve this goal, SDOT is using roadway markings such as painted identifiers to encourage safer and more predictable travel.

These colorful street markings are meant to draw attention and promote visibility for all who use the roads, regardless of mode of transportation.

Roadway colors you may come across around the city:

Red bus lanes


These visible red “bus only” lanes are meant to provide additional cues to alert drivers that these are meant specifically for ‘transit use only’ and improve driver compliance for these bus lane restrictions. The goal of these lanes is to help make transit flow more smoothly, to help those who take transit get to where they’re going.

Green and white bike facilities

Green1 Green2

Green bike lanes and bike boxes designate a space where bicyclists can travel with general traffic in a more predictable, visible, and safer manner. The green pavement also indicates spaces in which bicycles and other traffic may cross paths. It alerts drivers, bicyclists, and pedestrians to be extra aware of each other. To learn more about bike facilities, please visit

Multicolored crosswalks


Multicolored crosswalks, like the rainbow crosswalks on Capitol Hill, are previously marked crosswalks that have been painted with unique colors and are meant to highlight a community’s culture and history or liven up an intersection crosswalk with a colorful design. This is a great way for our neighborhood communities to celebrate themselves in a creative and visual manner. For more about current crosswalks and how to request one, please visit:

Beige curb bulbs


Beige painted curb bulbs are meant to extend an existing curb and shorten the crossing distance in an intersection. The light color helps increase pedestrian visibility in locations including busy streets near schools where kids are traveling to and from.

For more information other ways we are making the roads safer for everyone, please visit our Vision Zero homepage at Please travel safely and be aware of others!