Neighbors near W. Green Lake Way N on both sides of Aurora have found themselves impacted by the closure of the road through Lower Woodland Park and are calling the problem to the attention of Mayor Durkan, the City Council, and SDOT. FNC will discuss the issue on July 26 at its next regular board meeting. The Phinney Neighborhood Association has already taken their stance:
“With low traffic volumes during the lockdown, traffic was rerouted to other 2-way arterials of 50th, 80th and Winona. As business and park facilities re-open, the traffic volumes are reportedly back to pre- pandemic levels causing significant congestion on these streets with accompanying air pollution and excessive fuel use from the delays.”PNA letter
|Phinney Ridge Community Council Board urges reopening of West Green Lake Way N|
The PRCC Board has submitted the below letter to the Mayor and elected officials demanding a reopening of West Green Lake Way North which is the arterial that runs along the rowing center and Aqua Theater to connect with Stone Way with a new traffic light. Due to COVID, the road closure identified in SDOT’s Stay Healthy Streets has been extended by SDOT’s Keep Moving Streets. This is without regard to all the communities that rely on that access documented at over 11,000 vehicle trips per day (see SDOT Traffic Count)
Separately, a group of residents recently created a petition demanding the re-opening of the road (https://www.change.org/p/jenny-durkan-open-w-green-lake-way-n-to-vehicles-in-both-directions?redirect=false). As of Tuesday morning they have 3k signatures in the 10 days of its existence.
Conversely however, there is some opposition to re-opening because of higher traffic volumes on N 65th and nearby streets AND the desire for 2 way dedicated bike lane that would connect to Aurora and continue to n Green Lake Way and connect to East Green Lake Way.
We want you to be advised of this important issue affecting our neighborhood and we will keep you informed of updates. Thank you for your interest.
Phinney Ridge Community Council Board of Directors
Alice Poggi | Mike Richards | Irene Wall | Terry Cook
Remington Below | Tom Yeager | Duncan Griffin | Paul Andrews Honorable Mayor Jenny Durkan Mr. Sam Zimbabwe, Director, Seattle Department of Transportation
Mr. Jesús Aguirre, Superintendent, Seattle Department of Parks and RecreationOn behalf of the Phinney Ridge Community Council Board of Directors (PRCC), we request that W Green Lake Way N be restored to two-way vehicular traffic with existing bicycle lanes. This is a necessary arterial route providing a vital east-west connection for Phinney Ridge that provides a link between Ballard, Green Lake, Lower Woodland Park recreation facilities, Wallingford, University of Washington, East Green Lake, North Lake Union, southbound I-5 and light rail stations.W Green Lake Way N was initially closed to promote social distancing and increased bicycle/walking areas during the COVID pandemic. With low traffic volumes during the lockdown, traffic was rerouted to other 2-way arterials of 50th, 80th and Winona. As business and park facilities re-open, the traffic volumes are reportedly back to pre- pandemic levels causing significant congestion on these streets with accompanying air pollution and excessive fuel use from the delays.The Move Seattle levy funded a new traffic signal at the easterly terminus of this arterial and Stone Way N. based on the City’s own traffic studies showing that the peak traffic volume exceeded 11,000 vehicles per day in June 2018. (See attached Traffic Count). It seems apparent that the need for this signalized intersection had greater importance than some of the other project elements which were recently cut due to budget shortfalls such as the work on Stone Way south of N 50th St.Additionally, we have been advised by Council Member Dan Strauss, that this roadway remains closed so that “protected bike lanes” can be installed at some indeterminate time. The current bike lanes have been adequate for many years and there has been no data presented that they pose a safety hazard for riders. Bicycle lane modifications along West Green Lake Way N are NOT in the Bicycle Implementation Plan 2019-2024 (pg 30-32) and are likely re-directing funds from other projects. If the City desires to reconfigure the roadway for new bicycle lanes, this planning effort should be done in a transparent process involving all roadway users. In the meantime, the roadway can be easily re-opened and restored to its prior use.To conclude, this essential arterial link and park access should be restored to meet the current traffic demand along this major arterial as business and park facilities are fully re-opening. We therefore implore the City to immediately re-open W Green Lake Way N. As I have previously indicated to Dan Strauss and others in the Department of Neighborhoods, we remain available to collaborate with city staff to help resolve any outstanding issues.Respectfully, Alice Poggi, President Phinney Ridge Community CouncilCc: Dan Strauss, District 6, Chair Land Use & Neighborhoods Committee Alex Pedersen, District 4, Chair Transportation & Utilities CommitteeAttachment: SDOT Traffic Count
| ABOUT PRCCThe Phinney Ridge Community Council (PRCC) is a volunteer, not-for-profit organization that tracks issues such as public safety, transportation, transit, land use, zoning, city budget priorities, capital improvements, parks, open space use and other civic issues.|
The PRCC initiates communication with elected officials, city departments, other community councils and civic organizations to ensure our neighborhood shares in opportunities for public input and resources.
The PRCC is a resource for sharing ideas, concerns and for building coalitions.