23rd Avenue Corridor Improvements Project
Updated Febrauary 19, 2015
PHASE 1 CONSTRUCTION
Improving safety and mobility in your neighborhood
In April 2015, the Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) will begin constructing improvements along 23rd Avenue between S Jackson Street and E John Street. These improvements will improve safety and mobility for drivers, pedestrians and transit riders. The project includes:
What to expect – northbound closures and detours during construction
Construction between S Jackson Street and E John Street is expected to last approximately 20 months. To ensure the safety of pedestrians and drivers, as well as to allow enough space for crews to safely complete their work in a timely manner, northbound traffic in the active work zone will be detoured to Martin Luther King Jr Way. Southbound traffic will be maintained, though reduced to one lane at most times. The graphic below illustrates why there is not enough space in the road to accommodate more than one lane of traffic during construction.
To minimize the impact of construction in front of your home, business or route to school or work, construction will be divided into three zones.
While construction is happening in your zone, you should expect the following:
How to use the detour
Northbound traffic will be detoured east to Martin Luther King Jr. Way. To access a home or business mid-zone, drivers will need to use Martin Luther King Jr. Way (or another nearby arterial) to travel northbound and turn onto an east-west street at the end of a zone – S Jackson, E Cherry, E Union or E Madison/John streets – to then go southbound on 23rd Avenue. Use the detour map at right to determine how to access a business or residence mid-zone on 23rd Avenue.
We expect the first few weeks of detours to be a challenge as you adapt to the new routes. We appreciate your patience as we make adjustments to keep traffic and people moving – please plan for extra time as you travel through the corridor.
Metro bus detours and stop changes
Visit Metro’s Rider Alerts page to get the latest information about your route and any changes during construction. Generally, detours will only be in place when necessary, as affected by construction. For example, northbound Route 48 will use Martin Luther King Jr Way when work is happening in a zone, and then cut back over to 23rd Avenue to continue north. Southbound bus service on 23rd Avenue will be maintained, but likely experience some delays.
Keeping your neighborhood safe and moving during construction
To balance the various needs of everyone who lives, works, plays and goes to school on and around 23rd Avenue, we have identified some tools to help manage traffic and keep people safe on the neighborhood’s streets. These include:
Phase 1 installation of the Central Area Neighborhood Greenway will begin prior to construction along 23rd Avenue. The greenway will provide a space for people to bike and walk next to 23rd Avenue, but generally away from active construction.
Your favorite businesses and organizations will be open during construction
In addition to safety and mobility, we want to ensure the local businesses and places you visit regularly remain accessible during construction. To help local businesses stay accessible and minimize some of the construction impacts they may experience, the City will:
The City also has additional resources available for businesses and organizations affected by construction. If you are a local business/organization and would like more information, please contact the Office of Economic Development directly at 206-684-8090.
Construction contact information
Construction can be difficult. If you experience any issues or have questions during construction, please contact the community liaison via phone or email anytime, day or night:
Staff are currently available during normal business hours; a 24-hour hotline will be accessible just prior to – and during – construction
Email address: 23rdAveCorridor@seattle.gov
Phase 1 (S Jackson Street to E John Street)
Phase 2 (S Jackson Street to Rainier Avenue S)
Phase 3 (E Roanoke Street to E John Street transit stop improvements)
23rd Avenue is an essential arterial that connects a variety of users to businesses, educational institutions and residences in the Central District and beyond. Approximately 13,400-20,000 vehicles use 23rd Avenue each day. This area also serves high volumes of pedestrians, bike riders, and transit users (approximately 6,000 daily transit riders).
The corridor is in poor condition, with narrow lanes and no turn lanes, many pothole patches and restricted and uneven sidewalks. The City of Seattle is investing in the Central District by improving 23rd Avenue to make it safer for those who drive, take transit and walk.
The new roadway – opportunity for a safer 23rd Avenue
On streets with 25,000 vehicles per day or fewer, redesigning a street from four lanes to three can increase safety by reducing collisions, reducing speeding, allowing vehicles to turn without blocking traffic, managing drivers cutting in and out of lanes, creating space for wider sidewalks, making streets easier to cross and making it easier for freight and transit to travel. At most bus stops, the road will flare to approximately 18 feet, where buses can pull to the side and vehicles can pass the stopped bus in the travel lane. The City is also working with King County Metro to determine the benefits of electrifying the Route 48 line. The results from the study can be found in the Project Materials section below.
SDOT is committed to engaging with the community and understanding the needs in the project area. To get ready for construction, we are conducting door-to-door outreach, briefing community groups and businesses, sending email and online notifications, and hosting a pre-construction open house. Please contact us if you would like to request a community briefing.
The project is being funded by a number of sources – local, state and federal. To date, the City of Seattle has allocated $45 million for improvements to the corridor. Phase 1 is fully funded. Phases 2 and 3 design are fully funded. Additional funding is needed for Phase 2 and 3 construction.
Questions or Comments?
If you need this information translated, please call (206) 727-8857.