In an emergency, first responders need to know exactly where they’re going to help. But if a street address is hard to find, that can affect response time. That’s why emergency responders like Seattle Fire, Seattle Police, and UW Police requested street name changes for nine locations in the city. At each location, response time was affected by an existing awkward street name or other address issue.
As a result, the City Council passed Ordinance 125106 to change the name of nine streets in Seattle in 2016, including:
- Broad St between 9th Ave N and Westlake Ave N changed to Roy St
- S Della St between 27th Ave S and Martin Luther King Jr. Way S changed to S Walden St
- Cloverdale Place S between Rainier Ave S and Seward Ave S changed to S Cloverdale Place
- NW 35th St between 1st Ave NW and NW Canal St changed to NW Canal St
All streets in Seattle are named by ordinance and must get Council approval to be changed.
The street name signs were updated in late October 2016. These changes meant improved access for 38 addresses, 27 which resulted in an actual address change. Affected residents received notice by mail.
The project was a combined research effort among SDOT, the Seattle Department of Construction & Inspection (SDCI), and Seattle IT. The street and address data are used by every department in the City, including by emergency services, for navigation. When the data is inconsistent, incorrect, outdated, or conflicting, it is the City’s responsibility to update the street names by ordinance.
Please note that private map products are responsible for updating their own maps with current data. When in doubt, believe the name on the street name sign over the online map!
If you have questions about your address, please contact SDCI at 206-684-8850. For more about street name signs, go here.