12th Ave Vision Zero Safety Corridor

Updated: July 2024

What's Happening Now?

As part of our ongoing efforts to make 12th Ave a safer and smoother route for all travelers, we have recently completed repaving two sections along the corridor. This means that drivers and cyclists can expect a more comfortable ride with fewer potholes and uneven surfaces. The repaving was done on the southbound lane of 12th Ave, between E Pine St and E Olive St, and between E Fir St and E Yesler Way.

The photo below shows the before and after conditions of the southbound lane on 12th Avenue. The left side of the photo shows the improvements between E Pine and E Olive Streets, while the right side shows the improvements between E Fir and Yesler Way Streets.

The image is divided into two parts. The top section, labeled "Before," depicts an uneven and cracked street. The bottom section, labeled "After," shows a newly repaved street, smooth and even.

Temporary road markings have been installed, and in the coming weeks, our crews will return to these locations to install permanent markings. Additionally, this summer, we will repave the northbound lane of 12th Ave between S King St and S Weller St.

Project Overview

We are building a safety project on the 12th Ave corridor throughout several neighborhoods including Capitol Hill, Central District, and Little Saigon. 12th Ave is a high collision corridor and a priority for the Vision Zero program, which aims to end traffic deaths and serious injuries by 2030.

This project includes providing more visibility at intersections, replacing obsolete signs, improving pedestrian safety, installing “No Turn on Red” signs at signalized intersections, refreshing road markings, adding cross-bikes at every intersection with connecting bike lanes, and pavement work at three locations: Southbound of 12th Ave. at E Yesler Way, and E Pine St, and Northbound of 12th Ave. at S Weller St.

Image shows 12th Ave and Cherry St intersection

Image above shows the conditions today at 12th Ave and Cherry St. looking east

Project Background

12th Ave is a crucial bike, pedestrian, and transit corridor through some of the densest and most diverse parts of the city, connecting Little Saigon to Beacon Hill. As Seattle grows and demand on the street increases from everyone from residents of Yesler Terrace to businesses and patrons in Little Saigon, to students at Seattle University, it is important to ensure 12th Ave S is safe and accessible for people of all ages and abilities. In partnership with neighboring communities, SDOT is committed to identifying and investing in safety and mobility improvements along this corridor. 

Later this year, we’ll be replacing outdated signage, improving intersection safety, giving the street markings a fresh coat of paint, and more. We will begin outreach as early as fall 2024, both to inform neighbors about these improvements and to consult with them on how we might further improve safety and accessibility in the future.

In 2021, we installed safety enhancements for people walking, biking, and using mobility devices at S King St., S Weller St. and S Charles St., and reduced traffic speeds on 12th Ave S at the Jose Rizal Bridge. Details of these improvements can be found here.

Project area

We are building a set of standard treatments to improve safety on 12th Ave S, from E Aloha St to S Weller St.

An image showing the project area and the safety improvements to implement along 12th Ave

Project Elements 

Transportation safety concerns communities everywhere, cutting across demographic lines and directly impacting the well-being of all community members, regardless of background. Addressing the critical need for safer streets, we’ll implement corridor wide improvements using our Vision Zero safe system toolkit:  

  • Intersection safety improvements:
    • Intersection improvements: Formalizing parking restrictions at certain intersections, allows people walking or using mobility devices to be more easily seen by approaching vehicles, improving their safety, and reducing the likelihood of crashes.
    • New Stop bars & refresh existing: Stop bars offer a clear visual cue for drivers on where to safely stop at intersections, enhancing intersection safety, and reducing the risk of collisions.
    • Paint the road with green markings for cross-bikes at connecting bike lanes: Green cross-bike striping increases the visibility of bike lanes, making them safer for cyclists and reducing the risk of crashes with vehicles at intersections.
  • Signals and signage safety improvements:
    • Upgrade to countdown pedestrian signals: Countdown signals provide people walking or using mobility devices with a clear visual indication of the time remaining to cross the street, improving their safety.
    • Upgrade 8” signal heads to 12”: Larger signal heads are more visible to drivers, especially in adverse weather conditions or high-traffic situations, thereby reducing the likelihood of collisions and increasing overall traffic safety.
    • Replace obsolete Stop signs with red-backed Stop sign & reflective red & white posts: Upgrading Stop signs with reflective materials and red backing improves their visibility, especially at night or  in low-light conditions, reducing the likelihood of collisions at intersections.
  • Crossing safety improvements:
    • Leading pedestrian Intervals: Ensures people walking or using mobility devices get a head start at crosswalks before cars are allowed to move, making them more visible providing a safer crossing experience.
    • New paint for existing crosswalks: Re-marking crosswalks increases their visibility to drivers, people walking or using mobility devices, reducing the risk of collisions, and improving overall safety.

    These efforts create a safer transportation environment, making daily commutes safer for everyone and showcasing a commitment to everyone's right to move through public spaces with peace of mind. Check our interactive map for more details on where we will implement each enhancement, click here

    Schedule

    • Early and mid 2024: Construction of paving improvements and design of safety improvements.
    • Late 2024: Installation of safety improvements.

    Materials

    Translation and Interpretation

    • We are improving 12th Avenue to make it safer for people walking, biking, and using other mobility devices. If you need this information translated, please call (206) 400-7515.
    • Estamos mejorando la Avenida 12 para que sea más segura para las personas que la recorren caminando, en bicicleta u otros dispositivos de movilidad. Si necesita traducir esta información, llame al (206) 400-7515.
    • 我们正在改善 12th Avenue 的路况,让人们步行、骑自行车和使用其它出行设备时更加安全。如果您需要翻译此信息,请致电 (206) 400-7515. | 我們正在改善 12th Avenue 的路況,讓人們步行、騎自行車和使用其它出行設備時更加安全。如果您需要翻譯此訊息,請致電 (206) 400-7515.
    • Aming pinagbubuti ang 12th Avenue upang gawin itong mas ligtas para sa mga taong naglalakad, nagbibisikleta at gumagamit ng iba pang mga kagamitan para sa paggalaw. Kung kailangan ninyong maisalin ang impormasyon na ito, mangyaring tumawag sa (206) 400-7515.
    • Chúng tôi đang cải thiện đường 12th Avenue để giúp mọi người an toàn hơn khi đi bộ, đi xe đạp, và sử dụng các thiết bị di chuyển khác. Nếu quý vị cần thông tin này được dịch sang ngôn ngữ của quý vị, vui lòng gọi (206) 400-7515.
    • 교통국에서는 걷거나 자전거를 타거나 기타 이동 장치를 사용하는 사람들이 더 안전하게 이용할 수 있도록 12th Avenue를 개선하고 있습니다. 이 정보의 번역본이 필요하신 경우, (206) 400-7515로 문의해 주세요.

    Transportation

    Greg Spotts, Director
    Address: 700 5th Ave, Suite 3800, Seattle, WA, 98104
    Mailing Address: PO Box 34996, Seattle, WA, 98124-4996
    Phone: (206) 684-7623
    684-Road@seattle.gov

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    The Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) is on a mission to deliver a transportation system that provides safe and affordable access to places and opportunities for everyone as we work to achieve our vision of Seattle as a thriving, equitable community powered by dependable transportation.