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Covid Vaccine Updates // WSB: 30% Design Milestone Reached // Fauntleroy ferry dock replacement meetings // $10.4M for Community Safety Organizations

Covid Updates: Vaccine Available Now, Notification List for City Vaccines, Mass Vaccine Site Opens at Lumen Field, Volunteering Info, District 1 Vaccination Sites, Phase 3 Coming Soon 

Vaccine appointments available now:  Hundreds of vaccine appointments are available in City–run vaccination sites in West Seattle (2801 SW Thistle) and Rainier Beach (8702 Seward Park Ave S) on March 12, 13, 15, and 16.   Open to anyone who is eligible to receive vaccine. 

  • Sign up for West Seattle here. 
  • Sign up for Rainier Beach here.   
  • For accommodations and assistance registering, please contact the Customer Service Bureau at 206-684-2489 from Monday through Saturday, between 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. In-language assistance is available over the phone. 

City-run mass vaccination site opens: On Saturdaythe City will open a mass vaccination site at Lumen Field Event Center.   The site will initially vaccinate around 5,000 people each week, but could vaccinate 150,000 people each week – or 22,000 per day – at full capacity, if supply is available.  This Seattle Times article has more information.   

Lumen joins the City-run community vaccination and testing sites run by SFD that opened recently in West Seattle (at the SW Athletic Complex, 2801 SW Thistle) and Rainier Beach.  Some of you have written or called me to say that you drove by the SW Athletic Complex and that you saw no people getting vaccine.  Please keep in mind that currently, all three sites are offering vaccination only part-time and for only as long as they have vaccine supply for that week.    When supply picks up in the next weeks and months, all three will be open all week.   

Vaccine notification list available:  Vaccine-eligible Seattle residents can sign up to receive notifications when vaccine appointments become available at any of the City’s three fixed sites: in West Seattle (at the SW Athletic Complex, 2801 SW Thistle), Rainier Beach, and the Lumen Field Event Center.  Residents can also sign up for notifications by calling the Customer Service Bureau at 206-684-2489 from Monday through Saturday, between 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. In-language assistance is available over the phone. 

In just over 24 hours, nearly 1,500 eligible people have signed up for the City’s notification list – and more than 500 of them have already registered for a vaccination appointment at the Lumen Field Event Center for this Saturday, March 13.  In addition, over 600 people were registered through partnerships with community-based and faith-based organizations serving Black, Indigenous, and People of Color communities, older adults, and immigrants and refugees.  City services – including vaccinations – are available to residents regardless of citizenship or immigration status. 

Who is eligible for vaccine now?  The state Department of Health determines eligibility for vaccine.  Currently, individuals in these groups are eligible to receive vaccination: 

  • Health care workers 
  • High-risk first responders 
  • Residents of long-term care facilities 
  • All people over 65 years-old 
  • All people over 50 years-old who live in a multigenerational household 
  • Educators and staff for pre-K through 12th grade 
  • Child care providers 
  • Veterans enrolled with the VA (only through the VA, details below) 

On Thursday, the Governor announced that new groups will become eligible starting Wednesday, March 17.  Some of the categories can be confusing; you can find more detailed information about the categories here.  You can also check your eligibility using the State’s PhaseFinder tool.   

The Department of Health is still in the process of determining later tiers of eligibility, so it’s best to continue monitoring news sources as new information becomes available.   

VA-enrolled veterans: In addition, veterans of all ages, who are enrolled in the VA system, may schedule a vaccination through the VA.  The VA Puget Sound Health Care Systems website includes this guidance: 

All ages of Veterans are being actively scheduled now for the vaccine. No matter which VA care site you get your vaccine at, you must have an appointment.  It is important to understand that we need to vaccinate the most vulnerable Veterans first, which means even though we are now able to offer all eligible Veterans the vaccines, if you are healthy and younger, you may be scheduled further out. 

Eligible Veterans can call (206) 716-5716 to schedule, or contact your primary care team. 

Volunteering:  My office has heard from many District 1 residents eager to put their time and expertise to use volunteering at the City-run vaccination sites.  We’ve been asking the Mayor’s Office how volunteer power can be used, and recently received this response: 

Right now, volunteer opportunities aren’t open to the general public. If potential volunteer opportunities do open up to the general public, information will be posted to the City’s main vaccination website at: seattle.gov/vaccine. Please direct anyone who’s interested in a potential volunteer opportunity to check the City’s vaccine web page in the event volunteer opportunities become available and are posted to the site.  

Vaccine providers in District 1:  My office is keeping a list of approved vaccine providers in District 1, since the state’s Vaccine Locator website doesn’t consistently show them all.  Click on the map below to find providers and their websites.  Please note: lack of vaccine supply continues to be a problem.  Just because a provider is authorized, doesn’t mean they have received any vaccine in a given week.   

Vaccine supply update:  Washington state’s three week forecast from the federal government is gradually increasing but remains roughly 70,000 doses fewer than what providers are requesting. 

Week of…  1st doses  2nd doses  Total doses 
March 14  170,680  156,640  327,320 
March 21  170,680  163,660  334,340 
March 28  170,680  170,680  341,360 

Judging by the current forecast, Washington will not receive more one-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine for at least three weeks. 

Reopening news:  Yesterday, Governor Inslee announced that the entire state would move into Phase 3 on March 22nd.   Social distancing and wearing masks will still be required.   

Under the updated plan, counties will be individually evaluated every three weeks; large and small counties will have different sets of criteria. If any county fails one or more of the metrics below, that county will move down one Phase in the Heathy Washington plan.  If at any point the statewide ICU capacity reaches greater than 90%, all counties will move down one Phase. 

 

West Seattle Bridge: 30% Design Milestone Reached, Bridge Repair RFQ Issued 

West Seattle Bridge 

SDOT has reached the 30% milestone for design of the repair for the West Seattle Bridge.  

SDOT considers 30% design the official “baseline” for cost estimates, schedule, and scope. The estimated cost to repair the West Seattle Bridge is $58 million, and $14 million for repairs to the lower bridge, with a total program cost of $175 million This also includes funding for Reconnect West Seattle traffic safety and congestion mitigation projects in communities most impacted by detour routes through their neighborhoods, and the cost for stabilizing the bridge.  

The design for repairing the West Seattle Bridge includes new carbon fiber wrap on both the central and end spans, additional post tensioning, and seismic ground stabilization on Pier 18. The Pier 18 work is not required prior to the bridge reopening 

The next design milestone will be 60%, which SDOT estimates for July. At that time there will be updated cost estimates and schedule.  

Request for Qualifications project approach 

On Wednesday morning, SDOT released the Request for Qualifications and Project Approach for the repair of the West Seattle Bridge.  The RFQ includes the Spokane Street (lower) bridge strengthening as well. Both bridges have similar work with carbon fiber wrap, so combining the projects is designed to realize efficiencies in both cost and timeline. The total estimated cost is $72 million ($58 million for the West Seattle Bridge, and $14 million for the Spokane Street (lower) Bridge) 

Responses from potential contractors are due on April 12, with a pre-proposal meeting scheduled for March 22.  

The target for awarding the contract is mid-late May, with a contractor on board in June. 

SDOT is using the General Contractor/Construction Manager (GCCM) construction approach, which is designed to save time. This means that the contractor will assist in designing the project, in order to reduce the likelihood of constructability and potential schedule issues coming up later.  This is considered an alternative project delivery method; the traditional approach is to complete design first, then bid for a contractor.  

In the Community Task Force meeting on Wednesday, SDOT noted that final design for repairs is targeted for August/September. When the final design is complete then SDOT will negotiate with the contractor for maximum allowable construction costs. In addition, external approvals are needed from WSDOT and the Federal Highway Administration.  These steps add time to the timeline and result in an estimate for bridge repair construction to begin in November, with completion in June 2022.   

Low Bridge Access Update 

On the lower bridge, SDOT has been tracking data on usage of the lower bridge. Prior to the advent of camera enforcement, SDOT noted that it could allow for additional usage, depending on travel patterns  Camera enforcement began in January, the data shows lower level bridge usage, yet no additional usage has been permitted yet, beyond allowing on-call medical workers to use a declaration of non-responsibility for tickets. 

Below  is average weekly traffic volumes from when camera enforcement began, compared to the baseline.  

The baseline bridge usage before enforcement began was 7,018 average weekday trips. Bridge usage was down 36-45% during February: 

Daily traffic volumes by hour for the week of February 22-28 are shown below, in both directions. I appreciate SDOT compiling this information, and making it available.  

At the Community Task Force meeting on Wednesday, I asked SDOT when they will make a decision about bridge access on weekend mornings, since there appears to be clear capacity, as shown in green above. SDOT indicated they are likely to bring an update to the next Community Task Force meeting in April after additional outreach to underserved communities.  When pressed on the question of to whom they are doing additional outreach, the answer became instead that they want to wait so that they can “bundle” changes in access to the lower bridge to minimize confusion.  I don’t believe adding a couple hours of access on the weekend mornings will be confusing to anyone. 

Here’s what SDOT noted about next steps:

Here’s a link to SDOT’s Spokane Street Swing Bridge website. 

Regarding the questions of general weekend access, SDOT notes the amount of traffic diverted on to West Marginal Way, for example, on weekends is more than what the lower bridge could handle, so they are not considering allowing all-day access on the lower bridge on weekends.  

West Marginal Way SW 

SDOT provided an update about West Marginal Way. Videos about proposed work there are available in multiple languages:  

In 2021 SDOT is proceeding with a crosswalk near the Duwamish Longhouse and an interim pedestrian signal (with a permanent one in 2022). In addition, SDOT will construct a sidewalk on the west side of the street to upgrade the dirt path near the longhouse.  

Work at the intersection of Highland Park Way was completed earlier.  

Of other potential projects, the proposed bike lane has received the greatest number of comments. SDOT notes the comments they have heard so far; I’ve heard both support and opposition to the project. I’ve heard as well from numerous constituents who think it could be a good project, but question the timing and whether the project should be constructed before the West Seattle Bridge re-opens.  

Here is the timeline SDOT has shared: 

 

Washington State Ferries Fauntleroy ferry dock replacement meetings March 17/18 

 

Washington State Ferries has re-started work on the Fauntleroy ferry terminal replacement project, which was delayed last year due to COVID-19.  

They will be holding virtual public outreach meetings on March 17 and 18 as the first part of public engagement for the project. You can register here to participate: 

Wednesday, Mar. 17   

Thursday, Mar. 18  

Below is information Washington State Ferries has provided about the project:  

This project was identified in the WSF 2040 Long Range Plan given the preservation need and long-established operational constraints and inefficiencies of the terminal (you can download the 2040 plan here). 

The first phase (2021 through early-2023) of the project is conducted as a Planning and Environmental Linkages (PEL) study in partnership with the Federal Highway Administration per federal requirements (23 U.S.C 168 and 23 U.S.C. 139).  The PEL study helps identify transportation issues, environmental concerns, community values and economic goals early in project planning. A detailed environmental review process follows a PEL study, as required by both the National Environmental Policy Act and the State Environmental Policy Act. Information gathered in the PEL study is carried forward into the environmental review process, saving time and money. 

The terminal currently faces several challenges, including: 

  • Parts of the terminal are aging, seismically vulnerable and overdue for replacement  
  • Rising sea levels could damage the superstructure from debris during high tides in the future 
  • Long-standing operational challenges, including:   
  • Challenges with vehicles queuing on Fauntleroy Way, with only one shoulder holding lane to serve two destinations. 
  • A small terminal, with only enough dock space for approximately 80 cars, that is served by three 124-car Issaquah class ferries using a single slip. 

Here’s the project timeline WSF has provided: 

  • Fall 2016-2019 – Near-term operational improvements at the dock   
  • 2017 – Improved vehicle processing at tollbooths 
  • 2018 – Implemented new operational plan for Fauntleroy terminal 
  • 2019 – Launched new sailing schedule for Fauntleroy/Vashon/Southworth route 
  • 2020-2023 – Planning and environmental review for terminal preservation project   
  • 2021 – Launch community engagement for the project 
  • 2023-2025 – Design and construction planning 
  • 2025-2027 – Construction 

(Future dates tentative based on impacts from COVID-19). 

 

$10.4 Million Available for Community Safety Organizations 

Last month I wrote about a February report from the National Commission on Covid-19 and Criminal Justice about increases in crime in 34 cities across the country. This report noted the strain individuals and organizations have experienced over the past year, and concluded that implementing proven anti-violence strategies will be necessary to combat increased violence and property offenses across the country, including in Seattle.  

This week, my Public Safety & Human Services committee unanimously approved a $10.4 million spending plan for community safety investments, a continuation of the Council’s fall budget process to reimagine public safety.  The legislation will make it possible for the Human Services Department to release the funding associated with the Community Safety Capacity Building Request For Proposals (RFP) issued last week.  They will invest $10,400,000 in one-time funds for the contract period of July 1, 2021 to December 31, 2022 and up to 40 proposals may be funded.  Applications are due Friday, April 9.  Learn more and apply.   

  • All organizations working to create conditions for safety, including ending violence and reducing crime, are encouraged to apply 
  • Priority will be given to Black, Indigenous, Latinx, Pacific Islander, and Immigrant and Refugee-led community groups, as they are most impacted by racism, systems of oppression, and harm from violence and the criminal legal system.   
  • All organizations that meet the minimum qualifications will be interviewed.   
  • Free technical assistance is available.   

Throughout 2020, the calls from community to invest in alternatives to policing were consistent, loud and clear.  Seattle City Council answered that call by appropriating $16 million to invest in community-led organizations that are creating community safety on the ground every day in Seattle.  Last year, the Human Services Department moved quickly to award $4 million to the Seattle Community Safety Initiative, which is building community safety hubs and wraparound services in three Seattle neighborhoods – including West Seattle – under the leadership of Community Passageways.   

This new investment will bring together a cohort of organizations dedicated to reimagining how community safety can be achieved in Seattle, and gives them the resources they need to lead the way in creating safety in our City. 

 

King Conservation District Election 

Voting is now open for the King Conservation District (KDC) Board of Supervisors Position #3The King Conservation Districtauthorized by Washington State and guided by the Washington State Conservation Commission, is a natural resources assistance agency. Their goal is to promote the sustainable use of natural resources through responsible stewardship. A five-member Board of Supervisors is responsible for overseeing all KCD programs and activities. 

Voting began on March 1, 2021, and runs through March 23, 2021. You can vote via mail or online, please see this link for additional information about how to vote. You can also see this link for more information about the candidates running.  

 

Seattle Districting Commission 

 

The City is seeking applicants to serve on the City Districting Commission. The Commission oversees the development of new City Council district lines in response to the completed 2020 Census.  

The Commission appoints a Districting Master to draw a districting plan for the City, develops a draft districts proposal based on that plan, facilitates a process of public comment on that proposal, and ultimately votes upon approval of that proposal for transmission to the State of Washington. Districting Commissioners will receive a per diem for their service and Commission’s termlast until their districting proposal is submitted to the State of Washington. 

The Commission will be comprised of five members: 

  • Two appointed by the City Council, confirmed via a two-thirds vote of the Council 
  • Two appointed by the Mayor 
  • One appointed by the initial four members of the Commission, approved via a majority vote of the Commissioners 

Please see the Council webpage here if you’re interested in learning more or applying to be a member. Applications are due by 11:59 P.M. on Monday, March 29, 2021. 

 

Virtual Office Hours 

On Friday March 26, I will be hosting virtual office hours between 2pm and 6pm, with the last meeting of the day beginning at 5:30pm. 

Due to the nature of virtual office hours, please contact my scheduler Alex Clardy (alex.clardy@seattle.gov) in order to receive the call-in information and schedule a time. 

Additionally, here is a list of my tentatively scheduled office hours which will continue as virtual office hours until indicated otherwise. These are subject to change. 

  • Friday, April 30, 2021 
  • Friday, May 28, 2021 
  • Friday, June 25, 2021 
  • Friday, July 30, 2021 
  • Friday, August 20, 2021 
  • Friday, September 24, 2021 
  • Friday, October 29, 2021 
  • Friday, December 17, 2021 

 

 

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