Tag Archive for 'International District'

Deadly Seattle Street: S Jackson St in the ID

Walking in Seattle is profiling some of Seattle’s deadly roadways that could be candidates for a lane rechannelization, or road diet.

A road diet involves restriping the roadway, often to add a center turn lane and bike lanes. The effect is that vehicles slow down and the roadway is safer for all users. SDOT considers a roadway a good candidate for a road diet if people often speed on the roadway, if there is a history of collisions, and if a road diet wouldn’t significantly impact traffic volumes.

Jackson St at 5th Ave

Jackson St at 5th Ave

Walking in Seattle nominates Jackson St in the International District as a good candidate for a road diet.

From 2001 to 2009 there have been three pedestrian fatalities along Jackson. At 5th and Jackson a 74-year-old woman was killed at 11:30 on a Friday in February. Later that year, an 81-year-old man was killed at Jackson & 10th on a Wednesday morning in June. In 2002, a 69-year-old woman was killed as well.

The roadway currently has four lanes of traffic, with parking lanes on each side, yet only carries 10,200-13,600 vehicles daily, far below SDOT’s maximum limit of 25,000 vehicles for implementing a road diet. While a road diet may not have prevented these fatalities, road diets have been proven to improve safety. Automobile speeds are lower and less variable, and bicycle lanes help make the roads safer for more users. By lowering vehicle speeds, pedestrians are safer as well – a pedestrian struck by a vehicle traveling at 40mph is 85% likely to die, however if the vehicle is only going 30 mph, the pedestrian has a 50-60% chance of survival.

Jackson St, like 23rd Ave and 35th Ave SW, is a street that should be made safer and should be considered for a road diet.

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Storefront art near International District

Storefronts Seattle discusses an art installation at the Vulcan headquarters building at 505 5th Ave S. Art like this is great for people who commute or stroll through the area in the dark.

Artist Alyson Piskorowski has been quietly weaving an intricate new Storefronts Installation during these dark winter months. Alyson has transformed a window in a well-traveled corridor at the Vulcan Inc. headquarters into a springtime web of candy colors. Using drywall mesh tape and wire rope, Alyson’s work is meant to evoke the transience and passage of the corridor, which is heavily trafficked by commuters heading to the International District Transit Tunnel.

The untitled piece is “meant to be viewed from different routes, at different times of day, offering the viewer new encounters from a variety of vantage points and lighting conditions,” explains Alyson.

The installation is in place through June.
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International District storefront art walk

If the green street on Maynard Avenue doesn’t get you to take a stroll through the International District, maybe the Storefronts Seattle project will. From Storefronts Seattle:

From September 2010 to February 2011, local artists will be using vacant retail spaces in the Pioneer Square and Chinatown-International District neighborhoods to display their artwork, house their creative enterprises and establish artist residencies.

Visit the Storefronts Seattle website for a printable walking map to take with you. These exhibits are in place until the end of the month.


Green Street in the International District

Maynard Ave S in the International District is one of Seattle’s newest green streets:

What is a “green street” you ask? Well, it’s a non-arterial street with dense, residential land uses that is designed to enhance pedestrian circulation and create open space opportunities where adequate public open space is lacking. The street should attract pedestrians through a vibrant environment that strengthens connections between residential enclaves and other Downtown amenities. While improving the streetscape for pedestrians, bicycles and transit patrons, the street should support economic activity while maximizing opportunities for trees and other landscaping.

The design of Maynard Avenue S honors the Japanese American experience “rooted in the historical ‘Nihonmachi’ or ‘Japantown’ neighborhood. With the goal to support sustainable development, the project captures rainwater from Nihonmachi Terrace Apartment’s roof and stores the water in a cistern. The rainwater is then pumped to a series of planters by an imported traditional Japanese hand pump that is mounted on the cistern. As the rain water moves through the planters it irrigates the plants which, in turn, filter the remaining water before it flows into the city’s drainage system.

While SDOT may have missed an opportunity to improve a high profile all-way-walk intersection, these more modest improvements help to make Seattle’s neighborhoods more livable.


Qwest Field rated 5th most walkable football stadium

Now that football season is underway again, Walkscore has ranked the walkability of all NFL stadiums. Appearing 5th on the list is Qwest Field, with a score of 85. Thanks to its location convenient to Pioneer Square and the International District, there are plenty of establishments within a walkable distance from the stadium. Qwest Field also gets a transit score of 100 being convenient to the transit tunnel and a lot of bus routes.

Being able to get to the stadium by transit (or by foot, if you live nearby in First Hill, the International District, or the Central District) is convenient. And, walking a few blocks to a bar or restaurant before or after a game certainly makes for a more enjoyable gameday experience.


Smoother sidewalks on Rizal Bridge

The Jose B Rizal bridge, which links Beacon Hill to the International District, has been made over to help extend the life of the bridge. The SDOT Blog profiles this project:

The extensive rehabilitation project included repairing concrete spallings on the bridge deck; installing a new sidewalk concrete overlay; repairing and sealing cracks in the concrete; and repairing or replacing deteriorating expansion joints and a concrete girder. This critical work will extend the life of the bridge for many decades to come.

Photos on the SDOT blog show the smooth new sidewalk.