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Delivering a first-rate transportation system for Seattle Scott Kubly, Director

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Sidewalks / Walkways

As defined in the Right-of-Way Improvement Manual (ROWIM), a sidewalk is a hard surfaced walkway, usually of Portland cement concrete, separated from the roadway by a curb, planting strip, or roadway shoulder.

Sidewalks are a key component of Seattle’s walkable system that helps identify where pedestrians can walk. Sidewalks create vertical and horizontal separation between pedestrians and other vehicles along a roadway. Public health studies have noted that sidewalks increase safety—by separating pedestrians from vehicles—and are positively correlated to a community’s walkability.

As defined in the Right-of-Way Improvements Manual, a “pedestrian walkway” is a surfaced walkway, separated from the roadway, usually of crushed rock or asphalt concrete, that follows the existing ground surface.

Walkways (also called paths or pathways) refer to places for pedestrians to walk that are not traditional sidewalk with curb and gutter. They may be found on a shoulder along a rural road, adjacent to an unimproved street, as part of a traffic calmed or woonerf street design, in a parking lot, or through/adjacent to a park. Due to their design without curb and gutter, walkways may work well with natural drainage features. They are also typically less expensive to install than a traditional sidewalk with curb and gutter. Walkway may also be used to improve pedestrian safety and access along a route of travel and/or to/from destinations.

Residential Sidewalk

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