Don’t Let the City Council Defund the Seattle Central City Connector!

I recently read x-council member’s public letter to the Seattle City Council about defunding the Central City Connector. My response is as follows. I hope you too will write and tell the council to NOT defund this connector. With this project completed the streetcar finally becomes a fully viable connector between disparate and often hard to travel to points within the city of Seattle. More information besides my letter below can be found here.

My letter:

Dear Seattle City Council,
I’m writing after hearing about and reading the alarming news about the possibility of the central city connector (streetcar extension to connect the two disparate lines) being defunded. As someone who just invested in becoming a full time and permanent Seattleite I do NOT want this defunded. This can and will be a frequent transportation connection that I used between Pioneer Square, South Lake Union, and Central City. Something that I and many other I work with in the startup community would use daily to connect with businesses in each of these areas.
I currently live in Ballard, and will be here for many years. I bike into the city everyday (I don’t pose more cost to our overburdened road network, it’s 17th street bike boulevard and then 15th street trail through the rail yards and into the city). With this being built it provides an easy, car-free way to deal with traveling between Amazon, Pike Place Market, Russell Investments Building, Pioneer Square, and even in some cases up to Capitol Hill. These are all places I do extensive business, and yes, there is *some* bus service, but this provides effective service through the area that is more convenient, more business friendly, and will work for our constituents where as current bus service does NOT work. Matter of fact, out of town visitors generally won’t use the bus service for a number of reasons.
So I ask you to please consider funding the central city connector fully and building this high quality piece of infrastructure that the city – and residents, new and old, will be able to make use of throughout the city.
Please write and tell the council they shouldn’t cancel the funding for this project. Email them at Council@seattle.gov!
More on US Streetcars in the future, but for now this one needs to be built!
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Upcoming Sounder Sleuth Roundtrip to Lakewood

I’m planning a new transit trip, as I want to see what it’s like to take the Sounder from Seattle to Lakewood, and then back again. In the coming days, maybe as early as next week I’m going to ride this schedule and see how it works out.

  1. King County Metro Bus 15X departing from Ballard @ 7:00am from NW 70th & 15th to Seattle King Street Station.  ($2.50)
  2. Sound Transit Sounder Train #1505 departing from Seattle King Street Station @ 7:55am to Lakewood Station. ($6.00)
  3. Sound Transit Sounder Train #1518 departing from Lakewood @ 10:16am to Seattle King Street Station. ($6.00)
  4. Get to work, enjoy Seattle.

Ballard Light Rail!

…in 2035 LOL if that’ll even be useful for me or we even stave off mass destruction but HEY… let’s talk about this.

Light rail is coming to Ballard in 2035, so says Sound Transit. I read about it here, which you should too if you have any vested interest in Seattle, Ballard, or for that matter West Seattle! The build out, at least this initial idea, looks great. Here’s a simple little map of the plan (from the post I linked). Overall I’m super stoked for it to be done!

Sound-Transit-West-Seattle-Ballard-.pngWhich brings up another point, get registered and GO VOTE THIS UPCOMING ELECTION SEATTLE! You candidates are Cary Moon and Jenny Durkan. I’m going for Cary Moon, as she seems to have the most legit interest in this and the city. She’s also the only one of the two that wants to put forth a bond to push the scheduled start date for construction up by a gazillion decades. This would be huge, and would help and benefit us currently alive and breathing souls in a huge way.

The major points I see right off, which would add thousands and thousands of new LINK riders per day, would be South Lake Union to Westlake and Midtown. That connection alone would likely add more than most of the other connections, which will be great for overall ridership number. Throw that in with the added mobility to Alaska Junction, Ballard, and the respective commuter contingent that would happily opt for LINK over the Red Line Faux BRT routes! Anyway, I’m looking forward to it.

The other aside, as I ponder being 60 years old or some other older age when these routes are finished, is the increased bike-ability of the metro area. Right now, if I want to go anywhere outside of my current commute (Ballard to downtown Seattle) then things get treacherous really quick. Getting U-District and locations off of the Burke Gilman Trail are pretty easy, and very nice trips, but elsewhere; SODO, Alaska Junction, West Seattle anywhere, White Center, and elsewhere are a serious pain. They’re often fraught with dangerous intersections and areas where motorists are very unlikely to be paying attention or behaving and operating safely. This connections resolve and huge number of those points.

But I digress, not a lot to really say about it all until design and related efforts begin. I will be getting involved in those efforts, and hope to see more of my fellow Seattleites there. In the meantime, happy transiting.