Launched this morning, the Streets for All Seattle campaign aims to raise some $30 million annually from the City Council to help fund the bicycle and pedestrian master plans, as well as make transit infrastructure improvements.
I’ve been involved with this behind the scenes, and the way it’s shaping up looks fantastic. Improving sidewalks, adding dedicated and shared bicycle infrastructure, and potentially taking the next steps toward West Seattle to Ballard light rail are in the mix – although it’ll be up to the city council to determine exactly how they want to apportion funds.
In the next few weeks and months, we’ll have an opportunity to push our Council to make progressive, green transportation investments. Keep an eye on that site and here on the blog, and as there’s more news, we’ll have it.
18 Replies to “Streets For All Seattle”
While I applaud the efforts (the website is really well laid out), who exactly is behind this?
It’s a pretty big group. Did you see the “who we are” page?
Yeah, but organized it?
The mayor’s office.
Does the mayor’s office FUND Streets for All? They have money. I have never heard of them before. where is the money coming from and what does the mayor’s office plan to do with it? are they buying votes? who is this group?
This happened at the same time Streets For All went live:
The local sierra club will be working with the cascade bicycle club on this campaign. is this how the mayor will pay them? is the mayor rewarding the grouops for their past and future help in mayoral campaigns? is this legit? how can the mayor’s office give special interest groups money?
I like the environment but if someone else were in charge like Susan Hutchison then no way would i want her spending money with the NRA or other politically motivated groups to curry favor in town for her.
What exactly are the funding sources to raise those $30m? I know this is super controversial, but I was hearing a little while ago that some bike groups actually support a bicycle license fee, and I think I could get behind paying an extra $20 when I buy a new bike and it going to improving bicycle infrastructure around town. What do people think?
I have never heard a bicycle fee come up. It’s going to be up to the council to decide on a funding source, but if you think about what’s available, there are two or three things they can do that make sense.
I’d be happy to pay a license fee on my bike if it meant having safe routes to be able to ride on.
On a national scale bicycle groups are starting to warm to the idea but it is almost never a license fee. That model would be hard to manage and require a lot of overhead. I think financing models that add an extra fee to commonly used things like tires, tubes, bikes, etc is a much better model.
I would support the fee but I think it has to be realistic about how much money this would raise, which isn’t a ton. I think most people recognize this as more of a symbolic move as well as one that makes it harder to people to claim that bicyclist don’t pay their way.
Symbolic indeed. Tucson has been batting this idea around recently, and in fact the implementation costs were higher than what they would bring in!
A bicycle “gas tax”. :)
Boo to any mandatory fees. Public policy should incentivize desirable activities, not discourage them. Now, if there were an option to contribute 2% (or whatever) of every bicycle-related purchase to cycling projects, _that_ could generate funding without punishing the economically disadvantaged.
A tax doesn’t just raise revenue, it also discourages a given activity. A sales tax discourages consumption. A bike tax would discourage bike ownership. On the other hand, vehicles and other mods have their own costs and one could argue that bikes should participate as well.
However, I wouldn’t support it.
Will Seattle be able to build sidewalks connecting S Cloverdale St in South Park to the Olsen-Meyer Park & Ride, and thus make it possible to walk up the hill to White Center safely? Or will jurisdictional boundary issues once again doom the South Park neighborhood?
While I’m at it, wouldn’t it be cool to build stairs out of the Olsen-Meyer Park & Ride so that eastbound buses, at least, don’t have to do the loop-de-loop through that mostly vacant, poorly-sited development owned by Wallace Properties?
Interesting idea. Can I assume this is sort of a “Bridging the Gap” for Ped facilities? Or is it a reallocation of the use of existing streets? Why $30 million?
Maybe we should have a food tax. It is fuel for bicycle riders. :)
If they would just allow J-walking and bikes to go through red lights more people would avoid cars altogether. That’s the way it is in New York and it works fine! No more waiting at desolate intersections for the lights to change.
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