145th-concept-3

North 145th Street is a mess.  Providing cross-town auto access to I-5 and SR 522 along Seattle’s northern border, it features very narrow sidewalks, an above-average number of car collisions, and few pedestrian amenities.  To add insult to injury (literally), there are utility poles right smack in the middle of the sidewalk, which itself is right up against the travel lane.  If you don’t have Google Maps handy, just picture 23rd Ave through the Central District, except with 50% more traffic and even less regard for pedestrians.

Oh, and it’s a jurisdictional disaster: King County owns the north side of the street, Seattle owns the south side, and on top of that it’s a state highway so the whole thing is technically WSDOT’s responsibility (Shoreline starts at the North sidewalk).

Due to all these wonderful challenges, many transit advocates pleaded with Sound Transit to locate the light rail stations at 130th and 155th, to minimize I-5 conflicts and provide better bus and pedestrian connections (anyone who’s spent any time in downtown Seattle knows that the cross-streets that don’t connect to I-5 tend to be the most reliable for buses).  In the end, however, 145th won out.

To their credit, the City of Shoreline (having already begun an impressive effort to rezone future station areas), has taken on the unenviable task of trying to herd cats and coordinate ped, bike, and transit improvements to 145th.  The main challenge is the limited right-of-way.  Any significant upgrade will require taking property on either or both sides of the street, up to as much as 41 feet of additional ROW, depending on the concept selected.  Proposed concepts may add some combination of a center turn lane, wider sidewalks, a shared bike/ped trail, and bus lanes.  Concept 3, shown above, would include wider sidewalks and Bus/turn lanes in addition to a center turn lane.

Traffic volumes on 145th were between 26,000 and 32,000 cars, near the upper bound of streets that have received road diets in the recent past.   You can learn more about the various options under consideration at the City of Shoreline’s website. A preferred design will be selected in February.

70 Replies to “Fixing N 145th St”

  1. Kudos to Shoreline for taking on the cat-herding. WSDOT, King County, Shoreline, the City of Seattle, Metro, and Sound Transit. Nightmare! I wish their staff the best of luck.

    I have never understood this street’s status as a state highway. Why? Why? Why? It is just another arterial street, and is entirely encompassed by incorporated cities. Seems like it should be a city street, not a state highway, and a good candidate for decommissioning, similar to SR 908.

    1. SR 513 (AKA Montlake Boulevard et al. all the way to Magnuson Park) is another example of this. It used to connect downtown Seattle to Lake City, but has been sliced and diced to it’s 3 mi current configuration.

    2. From what I remember from talking to a WSDOT employee, they designated and still can designate specific roads as state routes for jurisdiction and future capacity needs. For instance if WSDOT wanted to all of a sudden upgrade NE 145th, they wouldn’t have to ask Seattle or Shoreline for approval.

      Not sure if it’s the best approach but it’s how WSDOT operates. So it’s not specific to this arterial. As RapidRider already said, SR 513 is another example. Lake City Way as well is an arterial that got designated as a state route. Filbert Road and 196th St SW make up SR 524. They do this throughout the state, not just in the Seattle area.

      1. If enough cities ask, they can often get the state to delist a state route. Cities usually don’t ask because states pay more money for maintenance on state routes. But I can think of some examples where a route got delisted by local request.

  2. This will sound like I’m trolling, but I’m not … Why isn’t there a bus route now going all the way across 145th from Lake City Way to I-5? Or better yet, from LCW to Aurora Ave? Metro usually puts routes where there’s even the slightest bit of demand. Even Beaux Arts in Bellevue, with not just narrow sidewalks, but almost no sidewalks, has bus service. So is this as simple as there’s zero east/west transit demand now, but we’ll be overflowing with it after the station is in service?

    1. I agree! It’s a damn good question I’ve been asking for years (I used to have a semi-regular trip that would have been eased by a 145th cross-town route.) Metro has a long history of having to be dragged into providing crosstown service in North Seattle. Low density would likely make it a low volume route, but the increased utility of the grid would be huge, even prior to the station opening.

    2. It’s not really about slight demand but about what Metro’s route criteria was in the 1970s. In 1980 there were two milk runs from Bellevue to Seattle, one on Bellevue Way/104th (Beaux Arts, 235) and one on Bellevue Way/108th (226). The criteria seemed to be to serve single-family neighborhoods and incorporated towns. Beaux Arts was a separate town so it got a route. Lower Bellevue Way did not have service except where Renton routes and peak-express routes crossed it. I rode the 226 and 235 all the time and I wished they were on Bellevue Way, which was faster and had more multifamily housing. But instead Metro did odd things like serving arbitrary single-family streets, not only in Beaux Arts but also in Lake Hills, Somerset, and Kingsgate. There seemed to be no reason why one neighborhood was chosen and the surrounding neighborhoods weren’t: the chosen neighborhoods didn’t have higher density or faster speed limits. 145th was a non-chosen street.

    3. “Metro usually puts routes where there’s even the slightest bit of demand”

      Traditionally, that’s only been true for routes that go towards downtown, not crosstown service. Back in the day, Metro was initially very resistant to introducing popular routes like the 44 and the 48. The further north you get, the worse crosstown service becomes. Only in the last few months, has Metro finally proposed a cross-town service between Wedgwood and Wallingford.

      While I don’t think a Bitter Lake->Lake City route would get huge demand today, it would probably be at least on par with existing routes in the general area, such as the 347 and 348. If it crosses a Link station, the demand would obviously increase. The issue is not so much lack of demand, but lack of money to expand service. When so many existing routes are suffering from poor frequency or span of service, it’s hard to justify creating a whole new route.

    4. A route running past Aurora and turning at Greenwood would also connect to the #5 and Shoreline C.C. It makes too much sense for Metro to do it though.

    5. “but we’ll be overflowing with it after the station is in service?”

      Yes, that is exactly what will happen. Right now a few peak hour expresses from far Lake Forest Park take that access to the freeway, but the mid-day service is fragmented.

      Once the station opens several routes which now go to downtown Seattle or the U District via Lake City Way will be diverted to it. Is there “local demand” for east-west travel, no, not a lot. There are no natural activity attractors along the route. Which is why people want 130th Station so much; 125th to the east and 130th to the west of the freeway are loaded with activity centers.

    6. What others said is the main reason. Generally speaking, Metro has not been interested in building a grid, but has been focused on getting people to very high demand areas (e. g. downtown and the U-District). There are exceptions. The Northgate Transit Center is one. But that is a transit center, with a very fast connection to downtown. By having buses funnel into that area, you achieve a lot of what can achieve with a good grid system — fairly fast and frequent connections to various parts of town. Unfortunately, the location of that transit center is very problematic. It is very difficult to get to, which means that buses spend a lot more time zig-zagging or even looping around to get to the center. This makes for a very inefficient system. The trade-off is that it is then very fast to get downtown (at least when the express lanes are in your favor). A bus like the 347 or 348, for example, allows bus riders to get downtown fairly quickly, especially since the 41 is a very frequent bus.

      As Anandakos said, things change dramatically once Link gets here. There is no reason that Metro couldn’t adopt a grid right now, but as has been shown, that is controversial. There would be a lot of winners and losers. A lot of people would likely lose a little time in getting to downtown, but save an enormous amount of time getting to other parts of the city (those without a car would benefit a huge amount, and those with a car might actually consider taking the bus).

      With a light rail system with decent stop spacing you enable a major savings in service hours as well as demand for east-west travel. The end result is a virtuous cycle. The buses travel much shorter distances, so they can travel much more often. Ridership is high to the station (and justifies the added frequency); the increase in frequency enables other trips, both direct and indirect (e. g. Lake City to Greenwood).

      The more stops like this you have, the more likely it is that you can build an efficient grid. The NE 130th stop is a great example. With it, you will certainly have a bus traveling along that corridor (in an east-west direction). Without it, you could still have a bus route on that corridor, but it would carry a lot fewer passengers, and thus be difficult to justify high frequency. You would have to serve Link, which means that buses would have to spend a lot more time on the road, detouring from a logical grid. The end result would be grid with a lot less frequency on every line.

      In short, adding a station at NE 130th (and a station at 145th or 155th) make sense if you want to build a good transit system.

    7. With the fact that the north lane is considered unincorporated King, I would also lump ST along with Metro. ST could also try sending a white bus along 145th, which I presume will happen when the 145th stop is built.

      The reason why 145th station was far more appealing for ST is that it is more palatable for ST to develop a route on 145th to get their white bus to that station than it would be to depend on Metro to develop a route on 125th/130th to get their purple/blue/green/red bus to a 130th station.

    8. When ST was gathering input on the LLE alternatives- at one of the open houses, a KC metro rep stated that they prefer to route cross town buses on 155th because congestion on 145th makes it less reliable.

    9. I live just off LCW and 140th, the big problem is if I want to get to Everett or many parts of Lynnwood on the bus, I need to go to downtown Seattle. Its just absurd.

      If I need to go there, I’d rather walk to the 145th & I5 Freeway stop or take a Car2Go there.

      I’m kindof curious what a two-way loop on Lake City Way, 145th, Greenwood, and 125/130th would take as far as platform hours and if it’d be productive. I think its one of those things that would generate enough ridership, the only problem would be picking a terminus and making it not suck for people riding past the terminus.

  3. I had no idea it’s a state highway. How absurd.

    You’re diplomatic to a fault toward Shoreline here. That they’re trying to deal with this mess is better than the alternative, but of course they’re a primary reason we’re in this mess in the first place–they insisted on putting link in a worse location.

    1. Also, it connects three highways. It’s straighter than 130th or Northgate Way, and those aren’t highways. In the state’s mind, you probably need a highway to connect highways so that cars don’t have to get on a non-highway. It’s also the state’s responsibility to accommodate cars crossing between the highways, and if 145th weren’t a highway then (1) it would be entirely the city’s/county’s burden to build/maintain it, and (2) they may not maintain it at a full four-lane width because they have other priorities than catering to the state’s volume of highway cars.

      1. State DOT engineers sometimes seem to be living in a fantasy world where cars are on expressways all the time and never have to actually go to, you know, houses or businesses.

    2. I just remembered that some cities have added all their arterials to the national highway list to make them eligible for federal highway funds. So that may be part of the reasoning for 145th.

      1. I think I once saw that 15th, Holman, Greenwood north of Holman, Westminster Way, Elliott Ave W, Western Ave W, and numerous downtown streets (or at least Denny Way) are part of the NHS, and they’re not state highways even though 15th sure looks like one. So that’s not it.

      2. They need to keep at least one road wide enough for tanks to suppress the inevitable Ballard Socialist Uprising.

        Only partly kidding.

  4. This again is another solution, not a problem, as I have been describing in reference to these “Streets Used As Highways” corridors around our metro area.

    These areas are ripe for adding 7 to 9 story apartment buildings buffered on the roadsides with BRT or rail (here is where we need streetcars, not in SLU).

    Yes, you could have a great life in such a neighborhood, with your (spacious, reasonably priced) apartment facing the street lined with retail shops at ground level. Easy access to transit. Reduced cars (powered by hydrogen to reduce pollutants) and on the backside easy access to bike paths, parks, schools, and other social amenities.

    1. That’s a great plan, but it raises a lot more problems – remember, the right-of-way is severely limited. To get those bike paths and BRT lanes, you’d need to take property. To upzone for those apartments (which we should definitely do yesterday), you’d need to anger every NIMBY in the area.

    2. This is essentially what the western U-District has west of Roosevelt: it’s next to the freeway so rents are slightly cheaper, and there’s less opposition to apartment blocks because it’s already an unpleasant area so fussy people never lived there in the first place. 145th is probably similar: it’s already a car sewer so fussy people don’t live along it; they live in quieter areas. There’s few existing businesses and I don’t think there’s existing street parking, so it wouldn’t have Aurora’s backlash on preserving parking.

      1. … and being close to the freeway it suffers from increased pollution and more complicated and dangerous pedestrian conditions.

        That we can only even attempt to house our next generation of residents in such compromised surroundings doesn’t speak well of our intelligence or courage as a city.

      2. “That we can only even attempt to house our next generation of residents in such compromised surroundings doesn’t speak well of our intelligence or courage as a city.”

        My sentiments exactly.

  5. I’m not sure Seattle owns responsibility for the south side of the street. I think they only have jurisdiction over the sidewalk. But, your point that it’s a jurisdictional nightmare is right.

    http://shorelinewa.gov/government/departments/145th-street-corridor

    145th is a mess and I wish Shoreline well in trying to fix it. If you ever wonder why N Seattleites complain about never getting sidewalks after being promised them this is one reason why. Even when we do get them they have telephone poles in the middle or aren’t ADA compliant.

    I too wonder why we don’t have a W-E route that connects Aurora to LCW. There’s really no service that does that north of Northgate to 155th.

    1. No, Seattle owns to the middle of the road, as per annexation law current when everything up to 145th incorporated. Then there’s a thin strip of theoretical UNINCORPORATED KING COUNTY, which is _hilarious_, then Shoreline takes over just past the north sidewalk because that’s where the north right of way stopped, and that was the law when _they_ incorporated. It’s _hilarious_.

      522 Transit Now! has been throwing our support towards NE 145th improvements and the general idea is that it’ll be folded into a Shoreline+state highway configuration, and everybody seems on board with that. Hopefully we can get something going here, because wow.

      1. Widening 145th requires Shoreline and DOT taking between 24-58% of the full properties along the road. This is something I learned at the last 145th meeting at Shoreline city hall. A young man very loudly told the crowd about the eminent domain numbers, and I looked the presentation he talked about http://cityofshoreline.com/Home/ShowDocument?id=21752 , and he was right. I don’t think it is right to take up to 135 homes in an affordable neighborhood. I also don’t like how the people doing this are calling this property impacts, which makes it sound like they are just going to take a part to make sidewalks. The presentation talks about taking full parcels. Very sad. The golf course should be affected before homes. Lakeside is pushing for no changes on their side of the road.

    2. In fact, some friends of mine have suggested that since the north sidewalk is theoretically in unincorporated King County that we could go there and set off fireworks. Since, you know, it’s legal!*

      I suggested that would result in two jurisdictions of police showing up and going “ha ha very funny welcome to jail.”


      * sometimes

      1. That description of the jurisdictional limits contradicts what the figure on the city website I linked above. Are the telephone poles in sidewalks a relic of a long ago road widening project? I would assume so.

        I believe one of the many jurisdictions involved just resurfaced 145th east of 5th Ave NE, however they managed to do it would probably provide some kind of roadmap on how to get all the agencies together for the project.

      2. this one just for trivia fans (or is it fans of things trivial)

        The fact that Shoreline stops that lane-width short of the Seattle border is especially ironic since its right there in the name: “Shoreline”.

        In 1944, when the school district (which significantly pre-dates the incorporation of the city in 1995) was looking for a name, some school girl came up with “shoreline”, because the square-ish district’s boundaries went from SHORE (Puget Sound) to SHORE (Lake Washington); and from LINE (King?Snohomish county border) to LINE (Seattle city boundary)…..

        so I guess while the school district was happy to include all the land right up to the Seattle city line, the Shoreline city founders figured they wanted no responsibility and didn’t want to get involved with a road already claimed in part by the state & county & Seattle……

      3. @Cascadian I saw the same diagram it’s what I was referring to in my original post. It clearly shows that regardless of where the city line is only the south sidewalk is Seattle’s jurisdiction. My guess is that the entire corridor is managed under an umbrella agreement between the two municipalities and WSDOT.

      4. So does this mean that Seattle and Shoreline don’t border each other anywhere along their entire lengths? Wow, if so, this really is an interesting piece of trivia. I see many bar wagers won in my future….

      5. I would seriously do that. Go there and set off fireworks. But they’d have to be *very local fireworks* since you can’t let the sparks cross either border. Maybe a sparkler.

    3. Shoreline has been talking the past few years about annexing both sides of 145th, and Seattle is likely to agree so that it doesn’t have to do anything about it. For Seattle it’s way out on the forgotten periphery far from its population centers. For Shoreline it’s less than two miles from most of the city, and a larger part of the city.

  6. I’m really surprised their is no discussion of developing a portion of Jackson Golf Course by Seattle. This is a prime opportunity to bring some TOD to the 145th st station. The golf course could serve the public quite adequately with only an 18 hole course instead of both the 18 hole and short 9. Does anyone know of any discussion of this at the city level?

    1. The golf course is off-limits.

      They just invested millions in redoing the clubhouse, and it’s a money generator the city needs.

      The fact that it’s the only park of any size not owned by the schools in the NE, north of 105th doesn’t appear to have tickled the irony buttons of anyone at city-hall.

      A massive, exclusive, single-use park is absurd, but has money generation and political backing. So no touchy.

      1. Wait, the only large city park north of 105th is reserved for the exclusive use of rich folks who have money for green fees? Seriously??? Public revolt, tear down the fences and go jogging, en masse, across the course??? I’m appalled.

      2. Right? Can you imagine if the only park between 45th and 85th NE was the Sandpoint Country Club, instead of the, as I count, 7 very good size parks there currently are? How would that sit with the parents of Suzy in View Ridge?

        And the problem is even worse, as a large minority of parents in the poor communities up north don’t have cars, even if they had the time to drive their kids across town to a park.

      3. I agree, it really is crazy. If you look at that part of town, there really aren’t that many good parks. If you look at a map you notice a few big green spaces north of Carkeek Park (which sits way to the west). But the first one is a cemetery and the second one is a golf course. The golf course would be ridiculously popular if it were converted to a park as it would be the premier park in the community, and be close to bus lines and light rail stops once Link got there.

        One of the big advantages of opening up the park is that you add entrances so that people can walk from one side to the other. One of the great things about converting Maple Leaf reservoir to Maple Leaf Park is that it connects the grid for pedestrians. The same thing would happen here if they converted it to a park.

        I wouldn’t mind sharing it if they could work out a deal. Maybe alternate weeks (one week for golfers, the other week for regular folks). You would want to develop it a bit more (add a playground somewhere) but that seems fairly easy, and might even work out well for the golfers (have the kids hang out at the playground while you play golf).

      4. I know. I walked along its trail along the edge, thinking:

        Number of golfers with clubs coming out of the station in the summer of 2024? 0

      5. I don’t know why people think there aren’t any parks up there. Northacres is a fairly large park and Shoreline has several large parks east of I-5, north of the line. There are also a fair amount of pocket parks on par with Ravenna and Maple Leaf.

      6. Which? Nothing in-city or East of I-5 that I know of, until you get south to Meadowbrook.

        Please point to the pocket-park that’s “on-par with Ravenna or Maple Leaf”. There is a quarter block near the library in Lake City, and a tiny needle park in Little-brook. Those are the only ones that aren’t a school or will be a school soon. I guess Virgil Flame hasn’t yet been taken back by SPS, but it’s inevitable. It is getting a skate park soon, so there is that.

      7. Virgil Flaim Park, Little Brook Park, Pinehurst Playground, Pinehurst Pocket Park, Northgate community center, Lake City Playground, Cedar Park, Thornton Creek Park, Victory Creek Park. The park density in that area is really no different than many other parts of the city. Take away Green Lake Park and Greenwood may even have fewer options than NE Seattle.

      8. The idea that golf is exclusively a game for rich, white males is nothing more than a stereotype.
        Green fees throughout most of the week are $35 for a full round. Not cheap, but no worse than going to a ball game. And if you ever go to Jefferson Park on Beacon Hill, there are people of color golfing all the time.

        And yes, I could see myself taking light rail to the golf course. When I lived in the U-District, I used to take the route 73 straight out to Jackson Park. I now live close to the future Roosevelt station, so yeah.

      9. I agree. Though $35 and the grand or two for clubs definitely tilts towards the, um, un-poor, It’s more the exclusive and single-use issue that bothers me. It’s a heck of a lot of land for only people who golf to use.

        Who I notice plays in Seattle are gamblers. Gamblers tend not to take transit, I also notice.

        I very much doubt that Link’s gonna get a lot of use from those carrying clubs. It’s a couple mile slog up-hill from the station at 145th to the clubhouse, given the 10 foot barbed-wire barrier. That barrier alone really says it all about the “public park”.

      10. I can’t agree that there’s a shortage of parks in NE Seattle. Especially if you include the several parks in SE Shoreline just across the city line. I have 2 grade school aged kids and have never had any problem finding a park nearby in NE Seattle. Several I listed were not school parks. And, when was anything N of 105th not considered NE Seattle?

      11. The point is that unless you get in the car, there are few options for parks for those in the NE. If you get in the car, you can go to Magnuson, Discovery. Heck you can go to Seattle Center.

        That assumes you 1) have a car. 2) have the time to cart your kid around in it.

        I would never cross 145th on a bike with my 8 year old to get up to the park in Shoreline at 155th, and he’s a responsible kid. It’s a very dangerous crossing and he just isn’t willing to travel that far. Except in a car.

        Similarly I wouldn’t be able to get him to ride 40 blocks south either. I also wouldn’t cross I-5 with him. I am not going to negotiate a long ride and crossing highway on and off-ramps.

        So do you now understand why I am focusing on the lack of parks in the 40 blocks- square that is the far NE?

        We are privileged to have the time, money and resources to get our kids out and get exercise and go to fun places outdoors. Many, many kids in our community are not so lucky, and so they have little to no access to any decent parks. And there is this massive park of city owned land they also don’t have access to, because it’s fenced, it costs $35 and you can’t be on it unless you have metal sticks in a bag.

        Now do you understand?

      12. MJ: “Green fees throughout most of the week are $35 for a full round.”

        As a kid who grew up in a trailer park in a small town whose parents were working class, a low-paid “administrative professional” and a carpenter routinely laid off during recessions and seasonal (winter) shortages of work, I can tell you that $35 for one round of golf is well beyond the means of the working class. We didn’t even live in an expensive area, it was a small town with cheap homes. You speak volumes about how out of touch you are with the working poor when you spout that $35 for a round of golf is nothing. $35 = 70 packages of Top Ramen; $35 = six or seven Wii games at a suburban garage sale that can be played over and over and over. $35 = half of a piece of decent used furniture from Craigslist. $35 = a full tank of gas to get to and from a job that isn’t transit friendly. $35 is a lot of money if you budget well. Jackson Park has clearly excluded anybody working a low wage job! Am I wealthy? No. Can I afford the green fee? Sure. Do I consider myself poor? Absolutely not. Public amenities as large as Jackson Park should not exclude an entire class of our population.

      13. Geez, calm down Engineer. Yes, I understand that $35 is a lot of money for low-wage workers. My only point is that golf is relatively no more expensive than plenty of other things in society that lots of people do all the time and that nobody thinks twice about. If you think that pointing that out puts me “out of touch,” that’s your problem. I just have an aversion to stereotypes — of all kinds. That includes the stereotype about golf being exclusively a rich person’s game.

        This thread is getting off topic, so that’s all I have to say on this.

    2. They don’t appear to care that the largest concentration of low-income kids looking for something, (anything!) constructive to do is just east of the golf-course in the Little Brook Community. And scratch their heads with crime increases. It’s probably mostly crimes of boredom.

  7. One of the challenges in the area is that the golf course is owned by Seattle, and Seattle has little interest in improving throughput in the area. To be clear, they have some, just not as much as Shoreline does. The logical thing to do is simply cut back the golf course a few yards. This isn’t cheap, but it isn’t that expensive. Move the fences and you would then have enough room to widen the sidewalks and add bus only lanes. This wouldn’t extend to 15th (unless they also took private property) but it would allow for a sizable “cut out” close to the station (and the freeway) which could in turn greatly relieve traffic pressure. I just don’t think this is a high priority for Seattle. This is a key corridor for Shoreline and surrounding suburbs, but not Seattle. Those areas might be able to buy out Seattle (pay for shrinking the golf course as well as the road work).

    1. Not at all a priority for Seattle.
      Throughout the Shoreline upzoning process and then again last week at the 130th station group meeting I’ve asked City of Seattle planners about station area planning for their half of the 145th station walkshed…shrugs, crickets…
      Why would they without pressure from their own residents or tax base:
      A. potential developers of Seattle property in the 15th/145th or area…not many
      or
      B. Lakeside school wanting to expand
      Neither seem likely.

    2. Yeah, it seems not too difficult, and could be a win-win. Looking at the course
      (I found a schematic here: http://www.seattle.gov/parks/projects/jackson_park/files/schematic_design_20111101.pdf )
      it seems like just shortening 4 of the holes ( 5, 6, 14, 15 ) a mere 30 yards would generate enough land to both widen 145th and develop a nice (though narrow) row of mixed use TOD immediately adjacent to the planned station. (shorten / alter #12 and 13 for even more…)

      The golf course would see no significant loss of customers due to the alteration of a couple holes, and Seattle would see additional revenues either by leasing the land to a developer, or selling it outright and increasing their tax base.

      I’d like to see a whole re-configuration of the facility — there’s no need for 27 holes! but at least by making these small alterations the corridor could be improved and some TOD happen.

      1. I’m taking it you’ve never played golf. If you shorten number 5 by 30 yards you’ve changed it from a short par 5 to a fairly long par 4. That makes the course much harder. Shortening 6 wouldn’t be a huge problem, it would still be a 400+ yard par 4. Shortening 14 is going to make it one of the easiest holes on the course as it becomes a short par 4. It would eliminate most of the dog leg, and take the water almost completely out of play. Changing 15 makes it slightly easier, but probably not enough to matter.

        Golfers are fickle people. I already don’t play Jackson because I’m not a huge fan of the layout. Making it worse will drive customers away. I don’t think West Seattle and Jefferson have enough capacity to take the extra players (they’re almost always full when I play). More likely those players either go south to Fosters, North to Lynnwood, or go over to the East Side. That would be a loss of revenue.

        I agree that the 9 hole course there is pretty dismal, but there is a huge market for the 9 hole courses (Interbay is always full for example). And even if you did eliminate it, trying to reconfigure the golf course to make use of that space would be a massive undertaking and probably require the course to be closed for a year plus.

  8. Well, the picture at the top of this article is just “yuck”. A classic “stroad” whose excessive width will be far more intimidating to pedestrians than the current configuration, and which will encourage speeding and thus make the result less, not more, safe than the current configuration.

    I used to live within a block of NE 145th back in the 1990s, and I agree that something needs to be done to fix the sidewalk situation, but if turning it into quasi-freeway is how it’s going to be “fixed” — leave it “broken”, I say.

  9. 145th should not be used for pedestrian or bicycle traffic. I would never do either on that street, even with dedicated lanes. The only businesses are at major intersections, and the average real speed on the road is close to 50mph. Any bicycle or pedestrian traffic should be routed on 155th or through the golf course. 145th was and is still a horrible place to put the light-rail station, a better choice would have been the two stations at 130th and 145th,

  10. It has been a disaster for decades. Unfortunately, even though the city of Shoreline incorporated 20 years ago, they didn’t move to settle the jurisdictional conflicts and purchase the street when financial times were good. Now, who knows whether this will happen.

    Many of us were advocating for 130th and 155th, which would have provided better spacing in addition to what Frank cited. Also, 155th provides a straight shot to Westminster Square to the west, with Shoreline Community College behind that, where they’re expanding and adding student housing, and the city’s skateboard park and Fircrest are to the east, with at least a handful of development projects that way. Last I checked, there were zero development projects on 145th, though I saw a small housing project around 8th.

    The station at 145th didn’t “win out” in an objective way, however. It won out due to an orchestrated effort by Shoreline officials, who needed a reason for 145th to be fixed. To do so, they had to discount the alternatives to both 145th and 185th. When County Councilmember and Sound Transit Board member Phillips asked about 175th as a possibility, he was told that there was too much traffic. However, while 175th has volumes in the low 20,000 range, as well as complete sidewalks, 145th has 1/3 more traffic, and I’ve seen volumes reported by Shoreline in the 35,000 range for the segment between 5th NE and 15th NE, while the street is a disaster for pedestrians. When others brought up 155th as an option, officials said that it was a “quiet neighborhood street,” overlooking that 185th has the exact same cross section, even more trees on its quiet neighborhood street, that 155th had a complete sidewalk system and bicycle lanes as well as a “starter” parking lot to the west of I-5 (for siting a parking garage). Further, officials argued that voters expected the station at 145th, since that’s what they voted on, a specious argument given how the first Sound Transit ballot measure ended up (thinned down) and that resident’s opinions were evenly split between 155th and 145th. Lastly, false arguments were made that riders would drive from Monroe and Woodinville (through 60,000 vehicles/day on Bothell Way) to get to this station and its 500 parking space garage, never noting the obvious: people find the path of least resistance, which in this case would be Lynnwood, a mostly-freeway drive, Mountlake Terrace, 185th, or simply an express bus. What really happened here is that Sound Transit board members caved to the locals’ pressure, many (and perhaps none) never walking the 145th corridor until after the decision was made.

    But, that ship has sailed. It’s a fact that 145th will be a mess for all for decades, for consider this: Shoreline’s part of Aurora Avenue North was examined for re-design 19 years ago. End to end, it’s 3 miles. It’s just now nearing completion, and it had 90 feet or more of right-of-way. By comparison, 145th is 5 miles from Greenwood to Lake City Way, with a reported 60 feet of right-of-way. Proportionally speaking, completing 145th would take 30 years, but one thing’s a fact: it won’t be completed in the 7 years that’s left before the light rail station is opened. The lack of action on 145th for the past 20 years looks to be valuable time that was allowed to slip away, and the motorists that pass through that area will suffer as a result.

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