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5 Key South Seattle Projects

As part of our ongoing commitment to transportation equity, Seattle Neighborhood Greenways partners with communities that are at the greatest risk from unsafe roads and air quality hazards. In these most-impacted neighborhoods our hyper-local coalitions have won dozens of improved crosswalks, miles of bike routes, and improved access to schools, jobs, and transit.

Community leaders in South Seattle are making huge strides against considerable challenges:

Three people smile in front of a festively decorated DVSS booth at a summer festival.1) Georgetown – South Park Trail

Georgetown and South Park are a short, flat, 1.8 mile distance apart. In these adjacent neighborhoods, more than 8,500 people live, 30,000 work, and countless thousands play in parks, schools, festivals, and local establishments. Each southend community hub has essential goods and services that the other doesn’t — However, the lack of safe walking or biking infrastructure keeps the two neighborhoods divided. The Georgetown – South Park trail will connect these two communities.

Last year, after an immense amount of SNG community advocacy and hard work, the City funded the planning and design processes for the trail. But the work wasn’t over! This year, that outreach and design process was underway, with a audit walks, a design workshop, and extensive community outreach at summer festivals and events. Community members are busy rallying support, collecting ideas, and ensuring that this trail will be comfortable, safe, and connect people to the places they need to go. SNG, our local chapter Duwamish Valley Safe Streets (DVSS), and community partners are continuing a massive community engagement effort into 2019. DVSS are also celebrating some fun neighborhood wins, including new lighting re-invigorating the 8th Ave “Scary Trail”, new public art and spaces for people.

Partners: South Park Merchants Association, Duwamish River Clean Up Coalition, South Park Neighborhood Association, Georgetown Merchants Association, South Park Green Space Coalition, and more.

Four people converse in front of a background of a larger group holding Safe Streets signs.2) Rainier Ave Safety Project

With crash every day, Rainier Avenue South is the most dangerous street in Seattle. This year, Phase II of SDOT’s planned safety improvements were delayed – again. Meanwhile, crashes continue to severely impact our community. In August, after two young girls were hit at the intersection of Rainier Ave and S Henderson St, SNG and local chapter Rainier Valley Greenways Safe Streets hosted a rally and community walk with the mayor and SDOT staff. She responded with some initial improvements, which, along with the construction of the Rainier Valley Greenway, will make a considerable difference for people getting around, but more remains to be done. Rainier Ave S should be made safe for all people to walk, bike, drive, catch the bus, shop, and live.

Partners: Rainier Beach Action Coalition, Rainier Beach Merchants Association, Rainier Valley Chamber of Commerce, Bike Works, Rainier Valley Greenways, and more.

Two people on bikes in front of the Duwamish Longhouse.3) Duwamish Longhouse Trail Gap

SNG and local chapters West Seattle Bike Connections (WSBC) and Duwamish Valley Safe Streets are working with the Duwamish Tribe to provide safe access to their Long House and Cultural Center on W Marginal Way and to and fill in key gap in the Duwamish walking and biking trail. Pictured above, two members on WSBC’s Log House to Longhouse bike tour. Check out what else WSBC has been up to this year.

Partners: Duwamish Tribe, West Duwamish Greenbelt Trails Group, Duwamish River Cleanup Coalition/TAG, Delridge Neighborhoods Development Association, Sustainable West Seattle, Duwamish Valley Safe Streets, West Seattle Bike Connections.

And Two Big Projects Looking Forward:

A group of people standing in the middle of a slip lane on Golf Dr.4) Beacon Ave Trail

Our local chapter, Beacon Hill Safe Streets, has been hard at work defensively this year, protecting planned pedestrian improvements and bike lanes on S Columbian Way, S Myrtle Street, and at 15th Ave S and Columbian, but had a major win getting signals retimed for pedestrians on MLK Way. Pictured above, a #FixGolfWay design workshop held in the intersection! Now, we are starting to build momentum for the Beacon Ave Trail.

South of Jefferson Park, Beacon Avenue’s wide median contains a trail, benches, trees, parking and other vegetation. The path runs just under 4 miles from Columbian Way south to the end of Beacon Ave. But the Beacon Ave Trail needs improvements to increase utilization as well as improve amenities and safety throughout it’s length. With modest improvements and connections, we could see new community members using the path as well as an improved experience for current users.

Partners: While many individual community members support this project, we have just begun building organizational support. Please contact info@seattlegreenways.org if you or a group you work with would like to get involved.

5) Accessible Mt Baker

Accessible Mt Baker is the keystone project to improving transportation for anyone going to or from SE Seattle . The project removes the bottleneck intersection of Rainier Ave S and MLK Jr Way S, and creates a new multimodal system of connecting streets and paths. The Accessible Mt Baker project is critical to the success of:

  • Making the Mt Baker light rail station at Franklin High School more accessible.
  • Fixing the most dangerous street in the city – Rainier Ave S.
  • The Move Seattle route 7 RapidRide+ and route 48 RapidRide+ corridors.
  • Creating a walkable town center for the North Rainier Hub Urban Village to help catalyze affordable and transit-oriented development around the light rail station.
  • Connecting SE Seattle more seamlessly to downtown for people who walk and bike.
  • Improving freight movement into and through Seattle.

This project has been in the works for years, and we’re excited to tackle it head-on in 2019!

Partners: Mt Baker Hub Business Association, Friends of Mt Baker Town Center, Mt Baker Housing, Rainier Valley Greenways, and more.

Click for an interactive map of where these projects are located:Map