LEVY DOLLARS AT WORK | A safer, smoother, more accessible 15th Ave S

New bike connections at 15th Ave S and S Columbian Way intersection. Photo Credit: SDOT.

Recently, we made some big improvements to 15th Ave S in southeast Seattle, thanks to the Levy to Move Seattle. We had everyone in mind – people walking, rolling, biking, driving, and taking transit – when we designed these improvements around Jefferson Park.  

We repaved and made intersection improvements on 15th Ave S near Jefferson Park. 

If you’re in the area, you’ll see: 

1) New pavement, making the roadway safer and smoother for travel. 

We repaved about 1 mile of 15th Ave S between S Spokane St and S Angeline St and a section of S Spokane St between S Columbian Way and 18th Ave S. 

Repaving also helps us prevent potholes before they appear! Potholes are less likely to occur on roads which have been recently paved. Thanks to the Levy to Move Seattle, SDOT has repaved over 160 lane-miles since 2016, including recent paving in Green Lake, Delridge, and Ballard. We also plan to re-pave even more streets using Levy funds between now and 2024. 

2) Better drainage to extend the life of the street and make them safer and smoother to use.  

3) Pavement improvements along the corridor, which extend the life of the pavement and make the street safer and smoother for travel. 

4) Upgrades to push buttons at crossings to make it easier for people walking and rolling to navigate intersections. 

Intersection with accessible pedestrian signals. 

These Accessible Pedestrian Signals make it easier for people with visual impairments to navigate intersections. Each push-button has a “locate tone” to help people, especially those with vision disabilities, find the button and know what phase (like “walk” or “wait”) the signal is currently in. When the button is initially pushed, it will say “Wait” to let people know that signal has been activated but not to walk.  If the button is pushed and held for 1 second, it will announce the intersection (ex: “Boren Ave and E Jefferson St”). 

5) Upgrades to curb ramps to meet Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) standards and make getting around the city easier and safer for people of all abilities. 

6) Repaved sidewalks for smoother, safer walking and rolling. 

We repaired the sidewalk at the northeast corner of Beacon Ave S and S Spokane St. 

7) A new pedestrian-friendly peninsula, new curb bulbs, and improved connections for bicycles at 15th Ave S and S Columbian Way intersection. 

THANK YOU! We leaned on our southeast Seattle neighbors for feedback about the project as we designed and constructed it. We were pleased to hear so much support for the process and the improvements.  

“I just wanted to voice my support for the improvements that will be going in at the intersection of 15th Ave S and S Oregon. My family and I live a block away at 14th Ave S and S Oregon and use this intersection almost daily, primarily as pedestrians and bicyclists to get to MacPhersons’ and to Jefferson Park. My son is a student at Mercer Middle School and walked to school daily when it was in session. My fiancé rides her bike daily to her business down in Columbia City. Having the intersections pedestrian and bicycling features improved will be a major upgrade for our daily life.”  

“Thank you for the gathering Wednesday evening in our community to discuss the 15th Ave S Improvement Project. (And this time is the 2nd round!) Thank you for the opportunity to meet with representatives of several city departments the beautifully prepared posters, flyers, table map, response forms, and a table of snacks the presentation and Q&A the cool and courteous manner of the presenter despite some of the barbed questions and comments from a few of the participants the opportunity for anyone in the room to share a question or opinion and have that recorded on the wall chart, and promised response if needed etc. I walked home that evening very grateful (and amazed) that I live in such a democracy, a community where the voices of the people are sought and heard and taken into consideration for a project like this.” 

“I wasn’t able to make last night’s meeting, but just wanted to lend my voice in support of the project that will make crossing 15th/Columbian Way safer. I drive, walk or bus through that area daily when the middle schoolers are heading to school, and it’s pretty terrifying watching the close calls that happen almost daily. Thanks for all your work!” 

“So far I have been extremely impressed with your communication as well as the ease of getting through the construction area during your work. Thank you for listening to our concerns and modifying the plans. How refreshing to experience this from a government entity.” 

We hope you enjoy a safer and smoother travels around 15th Ave S, no matter how you’re getting around! 

Funding comes from the 2015 voter-approved, 9-year Levy to Move Seattle, which provides funding to improve safety for all travelers, maintain streets and bridges, and invest in reliable, affordable travel options for a growing city.

Article Source: News from City of Seattle