Seattle Mayor Bruce Harrell has nominated Greg Spotts to become the new director of the Seattle Department of Transportation. Before his nomination goes to a vote of the full Council this Tuesday, check out his answers to 13 questions councilmembers have asked him.
1) GOALS: What goals and priorities do you have as Director of the Seattle Department of Transportation and what would you like to accomplish during your first year in the position?
First and foremost, as SDOT Director, I would ensure that the department’s goals align with existing policy goals adopted by the City of Seattle, and that the goals are pursued in the inclusive and unifying spirit of the Mayor’s One Seattle vision.
My priorities for the first year would be as follows:
- Conduct an extensive listening tour to walk, bike, roll and ride transit with staff and constituents, inviting stakeholders to show me what’s working well and what needs improvement. This outreach will also extend to goods movement and the Port.
- Conduct a rigorous review of the Vision Zero program to identify which interventions in which places are most likely to save lives. This review requires both extensive quantitative analysis and deep engagement with the communities who are most at risk.
- Ensure that SDOT has the people, the systems, and the technology needed to implement best practices in asset management for the inspection, maintenance and repair of Seattle’s bridges.
- Bring to life the Transportation Equity Framework by embedding these concepts and techniques in the daily activities and functions of the department.
- Infuse the department with the values of responsiveness, innovation, transparency and accountability; these are the values that guide me as a public sector leader.
2) EXPERIENCE: How will your experiences working on transportation issues in Los Angeles, California help you to lead and manage the Seattle Department of Transportation and improve transportation in our city?
I will bring to Seattle a wide variety of experiences from my fourteen years of public service in Los Angeles. My focus as an executive at StreetsLA has been to help Los Angeles become more walkable, bikeable, transit-friendly, safer, greener and climate resilient. I’ve launched and led programs to improve the business climate for walkable retail corridors, provide safer pedestrian crossings, proactively inspect, clean and maintain the on-street bikeway network, mitigate the urban heat island effect in historically underserved neighborhoods, digitize and systematize the maintenance of 700,000 street trees, speed up the pothole turnaround time, enhance urban biodiversity, improve the streets along park edges, and introduce plug-in vehicles into StreetsLA’s fleet.