More on Neighborhood Greenways

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These past weeks I have written several articles  about Neighborhood Greenways which will provide off-arterial ways for bicyclists and pedestrians to get around, add to the tree canopy where needed in designated neighborhoods, and slow neighborhood traffic where desired.  Responses have been positive. 

A friendly neighborhood. Thanks to Greg Raisman from Portland for photo.

I have spoken with serious bicycle riders who we refer to as “fast and fearless”, more modest riders like me who are described as “willing but wary”, neighborhood activists, truck drivers, bicycle clubs,  labor leaders and more.  City department heads including those from SDOT, Parks, Seattle Public Utilities, Seattle City Light, Fire Fighters, Police and more have come together to discuss these opportunities with me. 

I am hearing concurrence that Neighborhood Greenways will encourage bicyclists to ride more and pedestrians to walk more, promote positive neighborhood conversations about bike/car/freight alternatives, and bring people together to share space rather than fighting over roadway real estate.  Neighborhood Greenways are also cost effective and allow departments to work together cooperatively on capital projects.  For example, as we’ve seen in Portland, our water utility department can work with our transportation department when road or water projects are planned in designated neighborhoods so roads and right-of-way don’t have to be dug up twice.  Smart, eh?

I’ve encouraged readers to contact me if they have specific ideas about locations for Neighborhood Greenways and I’ve received suggestions for Wallingford, Beacon Hill, West Seattle, Northeast Seattle, Ballard, and the University District.  Please keep ‘em coming!

Here’s a good article from John Mauro of Cascade Bicycle Club on the same subject.

And here’s Portland’s map on their proposed 2012 Greenway projects.  Portland has, I have been told, already 26 miles of Greenways completed.  Look what the connections will do for  bicyclists, neighborhoods, and drivers when competition for arterial space  is reduced by having safe alternatives for bikes and pedestrians.