SDOT’s Pedestrian Projects Toolkit helps guide our work to evaluate and install infrastructure to improve safety for people walking and rolling in Seattle

People walk across the street in Seattle’s Pioneer Square neighborhood. The Seattle Streetcar is visible to the left. Photo credit: Youth photographer Kaelau AOAE, in partnership with Young Women Empowered.

Our Pedestrian Projects Toolkit at-a-glance

As part of our overall Pedestrian Program, the Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) has developed a Pedestrian Projects Toolkit that provides estimated costs, timelines, and additional contextual details on pedestrian safety and traffic calming improvements.

The toolkit is available in English, as well as the following languages: Spanish, Chinese (traditional and simplified), Vietnamese, Somali, Amharic, Korean, Oromo, Tagalog, and Tigrinya.

We use the toolkit to evaluate and communicate many of the most common pedestrian-focused infrastructure that our crews install throughout Seattle’s network of streets, sidewalks, and other areas within the city’s transportation network. Data from Seattle and around the country helped inform our desired project safety outcomes. These include reducing travel speeds to improve safety and reducing the number of collisions occurring on city streets.

Crew members install a painted curb bulb in South Park, at 8th Ave S and S Sullivan St. Three people can be seen working, with the street visible to the left and in the foreground. Large trees are visible near the top of the image.
Crew members install a painted curb bulb in South Park, at 8th Ave S and S Sullivan St. Photo: SDOT

What does the Pedestrian Projects Toolkit include?

Great question. As shown in the two images below, our Pedestrian Projects Toolkit helps us to evaluate potential changes to the public right-of-way. This includes things like sidewalks, crosswalks, curb bulbs, curb ramps, rapid flashing beacons, and a wide range of other pedestrian safety infrastructure elements.

The toolkit also helps us to evaluate each item’s estimated cost, approximate installation timeline, how they would help improve safety and accessibility, and other factors that our team considers.

An overview on page 1 of our Pedestrian Projects Toolkit that explains the various factors covered in the toolkit, such as cost, installation timeline, and accessibility, for a range of pedestrian safety infrastructure improvements.
An overview on page 1 of our Pedestrian Projects Toolkit that explains the various factors covered in the toolkit, such as cost, installation timeline, and accessibility, for a range of pedestrian safety infrastructure improvements. Graphic: SDOT
A list of three types of pedestrian safety improvements (sidewalks or walkways, curb bulbs, and curb ramps), listed on page 3 of our Pedestrian Projects Toolkit.
A list of three types of pedestrian safety improvements (sidewalks or walkways, curb bulbs, and curb ramps), listed on page 3 of our Pedestrian Projects Toolkit. Graphic: SDOT
Example of a newly installed curb ramp in Seattle’s Central District that meets accessibility standards established by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The curb ramp allows people using wheelchairs or other mobility-assisting equipment to smoothly transition from the sidewalk down to the street in order to cross, and vice versa.
Example of a newly installed curb ramp in Seattle’s Central District that meets accessibility standards established by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The curb ramp allows people using wheelchairs or other mobility-assisting equipment to smoothly transition from the sidewalk down to the street in order to cross, and vice versa. Photo credit: Jeanné Clark.

How SDOT partners with local communities to use this toolkit to help improve safety of people walking and rolling

We use the Pedestrian Projects Toolkit to work with community members and organizations in neighborhoods throughout Seattle. For example, the toolkit serves as a shared reference point when we go to in-person community meetings or site walks, or when we send it as a resource to our project email listservs or stakeholders.

It also helps to build a deeper and more contextualized understanding of safety and traffic calming infrastructure in Seattle. The toolkit helps describe the benefits and enhancements that each element can provide, and also offers a realistic assessment of the typical cost, timeline, and other considerations for each type of pedestrian safety infrastructure.

Two people walk their dogs in Seattle on a sunny day.
Two people walk their dogs in Seattle on a sunny day. Graphic: SDOT

What’s next?

Please stay tuned to the SDOT Blog. We’ll soon publish a follow-up blog post highlighting our work to elevate equity in our Pedestrian Program, by conducting a Pedestrian Racial Equity Analysis to better understand existing barriers to safe and comfortable travel by people walking and rolling in Seattle – especially historically and currently underserved community members and our most vulnerable community members.

This upcoming blog post will also include a short 2-minute video highlighting the different types of safety infrastructure we evaluate and install to enhance safety, comfort, and access for people walking and rolling, and work to ensure we make progress in advancing equity, which is one of our core values and goals at SDOT.

Thank you for your interest in this vitally important topic. We wish you a safe and healthy day and smooth travels during your next trip.