Feet First celebrates 10 year anniversary

Tonight marked the 10 year anniversary celebration of Seattle’s pedestrian advocacy organization, Feet First.

During the evening’s activities, Mayor Mike McGinn spoke, encouraging the audience to support Proposition 1, the $60 car tab fee on the ballot to improve roads and public transit. He spoke of the value of walkable neighborhoods and suggested taking advantage of small conversations with friends and neighbors to speak of the positives of walkability, saying “the little things add up.” He also shared a fact from a study, indicating that the single biggest factor influencing people to walk in their neighborhood is not sidewalks or a grocery store, but the presence of a tavern.

Several city council members were also in attendance, including Richard Conlin, Tim Burgess, Tim O’Brien, and Jean Godden.

Matt Lerner, Chief Technical Officer of Walk Score, gave the keynote speech, sharing examples of the influence of walkscore (4 million daily searches), and urban examples from other cities, including Parklets from San Francisco and bicycle boulevards from Vancouver. Lerner finished by encouraging the Feet First community to accomplish the next 10 years of goals in the next 5 years, saying that the efforts of the organization are needed for the issues of global warming, the obesity epidemic, and childhood safety.

Feet First started in 1995 as a group of concerned citizens whose first major action was convincing SDOT to build a crosswalk signal in Green Lake. Since then, the organization has grown to 3,000 supporters and 100 members.


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