• Seattle neighborhoods want more from transportation levy

    By: Deborah Horne


    SEATTLE - Light rail is expected to reach Seattle's University District in just six years -- but Wallingford residents who want to walk or bike to the new rail station likely won't find it easy going.

    "What we're looking for is ways to get there on foot and by bike that's safe and comfortable for people of all ages," said Barbara Gordon of Seattle Neighborhood Greenways.

    Gordon was in Wallingford for the neighborhood walking tour for residents to show local politicians just how treacherous the journey is along Northeast 45th near I-5.

    "It's really dangerous because there's so many off and on ramps that are wide and that are busy," said Gordon.

    Since Seattle Mayor Ed Murray unveiled his proposed levy in March, residents have been looking for how it will improve their neighborhoods.

    The $900-million, nine-year levy, has come up short for some of them.

    In West Seattle, the concern is for the crumbling public stairways. The city has more than 650 of them; only the city of Pittsburgh has more. 

    Many of the stairways need repair and there's no money in the levy for that.

    Meanwhile in Wallingford, residents are hoping to convince Seattle City Councilmembers to make getting them to the new light rail station a priority.

    "Well, I would hope for there to be a pedestrian bridge over I-5 but there's a lot of options," added Gordon.

    There is still time for residents to make their wishes known. 

    The Seattle City Council has to approve the transportation levy before it goes on the November ballot.

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