Adaptive Streets

Since 2015, the Pavement to Parks Program has been creating public spaces on underused streets, using temporary materials to let communities test ideas, and developing permanent designs for successful projects. This year we’re bringing fun summer activities to our projects, and we hope to see you there!

Summer Activities

Games & Bubbles

July 17 & 31, 2018 | 6pm - 9pm
Come play giant games with us! We’ll have giant chess, Connect 4, hot dice and more for you to play with. Grab a free popsicle and let us know what you think about the Pavement to Park project in your neighborhood.

Slime Station

August 20, 2018 | 12pm - 2pm
Bring your kids to our slime station to make and take your own bag of slime! We’ll also have games and treats. Stop by and let us know what you think about the Pavement to Park project.

Games & Bubbles

August 24, 2018 | 3:30pm - 7:30pm
Come play giant games with us! We’ll have giant chess, Connect 4, hot dice and more for you to play with. Grab a free popsicle and let us know what you think about the Pavement to Park project in your neighborhood.

Game Night

September 12, 2018 | 6pm - 9pm
Giant board games and free treats! Join us for a game night and let us know what you think about the Pavement to Park project.

Coffee & Commuting

July 30, 2018 | 8am – 10am
Do you enjoy coffee on your commute? Swing by Arcade Plaza and have a cup of coffee on us! While you’re there you can let us know what you think about the Pavement to Park project.

Food Truck & Giant Games

August 11 & 31st 2018 | 7pm – 10pm
For select nights in August you can stop by to grab a bite from a food truck located in the park. We’ll also have giant chess, connect 4, hot dice and more!

Giant Scrabble Tournament

September 15, 2018 | 4pm – 6pm
Come join us for a Giant Scrabble Tournament!! Show off your skills and lay some tiles with your friends. The winner will receive a prize and bragging rights! We’ll have loads of other fun games for you to play as well.

FREE Mobile Bike Repair

September 18, 2018 | 5pm – 7pm
FREE Bike Repair from Bike Works! Come get your bike tuned up, jam to some tunes in your local Pavement to Park project! The Bikemobile will be out in full effect from 4-6, basic repairs and tuning will be provided for FREE.

Coffee & Commuting

July 23, 2018 | 8am – 10am
Do you enjoy coffee on your commute? Swing by the Little Saigon park and have a cup of coffee on us! While you’re there you can let us know what you think about the Pavement to Park project.

The Little Saigon Festi-Roll

August 26, 2018 | 2pm – 5pm
While you’re out enjoying the Festi-Roll events, stop by our Pavement to Parks project. We’ll have vendors, games, and bubbles!

Desserts & Games

September 8, 2018 | 4pm – 7pm
Join us for free dessert treats! We’ll also have games to play while you eat. Stop by and share your thoughts about the Pavement to Parks project.

Coffee & Commuting

September 10th, 2018 | 8am – 10am
Do you enjoy coffee on your commute? Swing by the Little Saigon park and have a cup of coffee on us. While you sip, you can let us know what you think about the Pavement to Park project.

Giant Scrabble Tournament

July 26, 2018 | 6pm – 9pm
Come join us for a Giant Scrabble Tournament!! Show off your skills and lay some tiles with your friends. The winner will receive a prize and bragging rights! We’ll have loads of other fun games for you to play as well.

Games & Face Painting

July 28, 2018 | 6pm – 9pm
Heading to Torchlight? Stop by Vine Street for free face painting, tasty popsicles and more! We’ll have giant chess, connect 4, hot dice and more for you to play with. Join us and let us know what you think about the Pavement to Park project.

FREE Mobile Bike Repair

August 13, 2018 | 4pm – 6pm
FREE Bike Repair from Bike Works! The Bikemobile will be out in full effect from 4-6, basic repairs and tuning will be provided for FREE.

Games & Bubbles

August 18, 2018 | 6pm – 9pm
Come for the bubble wand give-aways, stay for the giant chess, connect 4, and hot dice. We’ll have treats! Join us and let us know what you think about the Pavement to Park project.

Popsicles and Play

September 1 & 2, 2018 | 4pm – 8pm
Stop by the park on your way to Bumbershoot and grab a free popsicle! Kids can play on our mobile playground toys, or with our giant board games.

Game Night

September 7, 2018 | 6pm – 9pm
Giant board games and free treats! Join us for a game night and let us know what you think about the Pavement to Park project.

Next Steps for Growing Vine Street Pavement to Parks!

September 21, 2018 | 4pm - 7pm
You're invited! We want to hear from you! Join us and share your ideas, plus enjoy some food and entertainment - Giant Games and Bubbles! Come for the bubble wand give-aways, stay for the giant chess, connect 4, and hot dice. We'll have treats! Join us and let us know what you think about the Pavement to Park project.

Tai Chi With Neighbors

September 9, 2018 | 3pm - 5pm
Join us for a neighborhood Tai Chi class. If Tai Chi isn't your pace, we will also have snacks and bubble wands!

Lantern Festival

September 22, 2018 | 6pm - 8pm
Come join us in celebrating autumn with Seattle Housing Authority. We will be using the community space for a beautiful lantern celebration (plus moon cakes!).

Map

Overview

The Adaptive Streets Program is a cost-effective way to experiment with new public spaces and street improvements. Focused on creating inexpensive, temporary solutions, the Adaptive Streets Program includes two types of projects:

  • Pavement to Parks projects, which create opportunities for public spaces in underutilized roadway space, and
  • Tactical Urbanism projects, which enhance safety and mobility with low-cost, easy-to-install materials.

The Adaptive Streets Program demonstrates an institutionalized effort to implement quick and economical treatments that enhance the function of streets. Seattle's approach is characterized by four features:

  • Short-term - Construct projects quickly and allow community stakeholders to provide feedback before permanent improvements are made
  • Low-cost - Use simple, temporary materials to reduce design and labor costs and to expand the reach of the program
  • Adaptable - Design improvements to be scalable and temporary so that changes can be made based on performance evaluations and community feedback
  • Community-oriented - Ensure that projects address community needs and are universally-accessible, regardless of age or ability

Pavement to Parks

Pavement to Parks projects create new public spaces by reclaiming underused street space for pedestrian-oriented uses. The most successful Pavement to Parks projects:

  • Provide useful and active neighborhood public space
  • Allow communities to test out new ideas
  • Enhance safety for all road users

Seattle welcomed 50,000 new residents between 2010 and 2015. As the city grows denser, the need for livable, vibrant public spaces increases. Pavement to Parks projects use short-term strategies to deliver new public spaces that will serve as front yards, playgrounds, social spaces, and active zones.  These adaptive strategies foster partnerships and community stewardship.

University St, E Union St, and Boylston Ave in First Hill

University St, E Union St, and Boylston Ave in First Hill

 Community-designed street mural at Pavement to Parks project in Rainier Vista
Community-designed street mural at Pavement to Parks project in Rainier Vista

Maintenance Agreements

To ensure that Pavement to Parks projects are full of activity and stay clean and safe for everyone, community hosts will partner with the City on a maintenance agreement that is customized to each site. Maintenance agreements will address cleanliness, vegetation, amenities, and activation at each of the Pavement to Parks sites.

Project Evaluation

We carefully evaluate Pavement to Parks projects to make sure they are meeting their intended goals and serving as valuable community assets.

These projects are evaluated based on traffic data, observations, and surveys, but some projects may require other evaluation criteria as well.

Tactical Urbanism

School colors in painted curb bulb where parking isn't permitted. Safety and pride at school crosswalk in SE SeattleTactical Urbanism projects employ the same low-cost, temporary street treatments as Pavement to Parks, but primarily focus on improving safety and mobility in the public right of way, rather than providing placemaking opportunities.

A wide range of infrastructure can be constructed as Tactical Urbanism projects, including sidewalks, curb bulbs, medians, crossing islands, traffic circles, and intersection diverters. Tactical Urbanism improvements typically use paint, flexible bollards, and planters to increase safety and enhance the function of streets. While these projects often tie in with future SDOT capital projects, Tactical Urbanism treatments can be implemented anywhere street improvements are needed. If you have an idea for a Tactical Urbanism project in your neighborhood, contact Susan.McLaughlin@Seattle.gov or 206-733-9649.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Adaptive Streets Program?

The Adaptive Streets Program is SDOT's program that repurposes underused roadway space for safety, mobility, and public space improvements using low-cost, temporary solutions. Two types of projects are implemented under the Adaptive Streets Program: Pavement to Parks projects and Tactical Urbanism projects.

What is a Pavement to Parks project?

A Pavement to Parks project creates new temporary public spaces by reallocating underused street space for pedestrian-oriented uses. These projects allow communities to test out new public space ideas before permanent street improvements are made.

What is a Tactical Urbanism project?

A Tactical Urbanism project develops temporary street improvements that enhance mobility and safety in Seattle's right-of-way. Tactical Urbanism projects use similar treatments as Pavement to Parks projects, but are focused more on improving safety and mobility than creating public spaces.

How much does it cost to install a Pavement to Parks project and who is responsible for maintenance?

The average Pavement to Parks project costs around $70,000, although each Pavement to Parks project will have a different budget depending on its size, the materials used, its fiscal partnerships, and the maintenance required. In partnership with community organizations, SDOT funds the design and construction of the projects, but relies on neighborhood groups to assist with the maintenance and programming of the spaces on an ongoing basis.

How are Pavement to Parks and Tactical Urbanism projects selected?

SDOT has developed a set of prioritization criteria to determine the best locations to install Pavement to Parks and Tactical Urbanism projects. These criteria consider gaps in public open space, safety needs, race and social justice factors, as well as coordination with future capital projects.

How are the projects evaluated?

SDOT will be measuring the performance of each of the installed Pavement to Parks projects to ensure they are serving as valuable community gathering spaces. Certain criteria may vary depending on the specific circumstances of each project, but most performance evaluations will include six basic metrics:

  • User and pedestrian surveys
  • Observations of user activity
  • Traffic data 
  • Reporting from the neighborhood partners 
  • Business feedback
  • Public and internal feedback