In 2006, Seattle voters passed a nine-year, $365 million levy for transportation maintenance and improvements known as Bridging the Gap. The levy is complemented by a commercial parking tax.
The levy funds programs to address the maintenance backlog for paving; sidewalk development and repairs; bridge repair, rehabilitation and seismic upgrades; tree pruning and planting; transit enhancements; and other much needed maintenance work. Funding also supports projects that implement the Bicycle and Pedestrian Master plans, create a Safe Routes to School Program, improve transit connections and help neighborhoods get larger projects built through the Neighborhood Street Fund large project program.
Over nine-years Bridging the Gap will help address the City's transportation challenges and create a strong foundation for Seattle's transportation future.
The nine-year goals of Bridging the Gap are to:
Reduce the infrastructure maintenance backlog.
Pave and repair Seattle streets.
Make seismic upgrades to our most vulnerable bridges.
Improve pedestrian and bicycle safety and create safe routes to schools.
Increase transit speed and reliability.
Over nine years the Seattle Department of Transportation will:
Resurface, restore, or replace approximately 200 lane-miles of arterial streets.
Rehabilitate or replace 3-5 bridges and seismically retrofit 5 additional bridges.
Repair or restore 144 blocks of sidewalks.
Build 117 blocks of new sidewalks.
Rehabilitate 40-50 stairways.
Restripe 5,000 crosswalks.
Create "safe routes to schools" near 30 elementary schools.
Support the development and implementation of a Pedestrian Master Plan.
Provide funding to implement the Bicycle Master Plan.
Add 4 miles of new multi-use paths.
Replace over 50,000 small, faded street and regulatory signs.
Provide funding for neighborhood-identified street improvements.
Secure up to 45,000 hours of new Metro Transit service.
Enhance transit and safety improvements on 3 key transit corridors.
Prune 25,000 street trees to prevent safety and security hazards.
Plant 8,000 new street trees.
Fund 3 major capital improvement projects: Spokane Street Viaduct, Mercer Street Corridor, and King Street Station.