Seattle Parks Foundation Board
Sept 4, 2013 presentation, Cathy Tuttle & Gordon Padelford
Seattle Neighborhood Greenways www.SeattleGreenways.org
Play a leading role in the introduction of neighborhood
greenways as a new type of green connection between
the people of Seattle and their parks.
Recommendation #1 from Bands of Green 2011
What is a neighborhood greenway?
Beautiful effective traffic control in neighborhoods
Curbs, pedestrian/bicycle signals needed to cross busy roads
add cost to projects.
Vancouver BC greenways connect people to parks
Bioswales along greenways add beauty and high installation/maintenance costs.
Vancouver has over 100 miles and plans 200 miles of streets prioritized for
Portland has over 100 miles of family-friendly greenways.
Portland greenways also include trees, benches, and bioswales
Seattle September 2011
•Tepid interest by SDOT, Parks, Council,
transportation advocacy groups
•Three local greenways groups
•No funding for greenways
•No neighborhood greenways
Seattle September 2013
•Strong support by SDOT, Parks, Council,
transportation advocacy groups
•23 local greenways groups
•$5 million in City investments
•7 miles of neighborhood greenways
3. Learn from the localsSeattle Neighborhood Greenways @2012
Clockwise from upper left: Rainier Beach, Columbia City, Lake City, Ballard
Crowd-sourced mapping taps local knowledge of landmarks and safest routes.
Seattle Bicycle Master Plan Update 2013
85% of the greenways routes
recommended in the 2013
Seattle Bicycle Master Plan Update
came directly from GIS maps submitted
by local greenways groups.
MoneyCity of Seattle 2012-2013 Greenways Funding
• Council Direct Funding for Greenways 2012 $1,250,000
• Large Project Grants (4) 2012 (approx.) $380,000
• Greenwood Greenways Go to School 2012 (approx.) $495,000
• Mayor’s Safe Routes to School Projects (3) 2013 $800,000
• Council Direct Funding to Ballard Greenway 2013 $1,275,000
• Council Direct Funding to Delridge Greenway 2013 $625,000
(another $5 million has been invested in street access, comfort, and safety improvements
based on SNG recommendations)
Seattle Neighborhood Greenways
Celebration! Wallingford Greenway opening
3. Learn from the locals
Education: Livable Streets Mayoral Forum
Advocacy: Memorial Walks
Major Goals 2013-2014
• Complete crowd-sourced greenway maps with
• Solidify and grow membership base of 1000+
people in 23 neighborhood groups using Bullitt
• Build Board, raise $250,000, create 501(c)(3),
continue relationship with Seattle Parks
• Monitor and advocate to prioritize public
investments in safe, green street infrastructure
Tupper Greenway Park creates two quiet street ends.
Vancouver traffic is calmed by many tiny pocket parks in the street right-of-way
Community volunteers maintain hundreds of planting strip gardens like these
Two greenways are connected through an engineered pocket park
Vancouver street calms traffic, creates beautiful public space, and diverts storm water in the right-of-way
Seattle Parks Foundation was prescient – you saw the need to connect parks with safe, green connections long before SNG even existed. We’ve been under the SPF fiscal umbrella for the past year. I want to tell you why we chose SPF to partner with and tell you what we’re doing and where we’re going. One reason is that Neighborhood Greenways are your #1 recommendation in your Bands of Green agenda. Gordon: I’m focused on neighborhood support and living streets at SNG. Parks Foundation saw the need to connect parks with safe, green connections long before SNG had been formed. Since then, Seattle Neighborhood Greenways has become a vital group to get your great ideas implemented.
We’ve taken your great idea of greenways connecting parks and expanded on it. In a nutshell, we envision greenways as streets for people. The idea of greenways is to prioritize streets for people who walk and bike, with a special emphasis on the needs of children, grandparents, and all people regardless of their age or ability level. Our goal is to enhance neighborhood streets to create stress-free and park-like spaces, that connect people, to places they want to go in their neighborhoods, such as parks, grocery stores, schools, etc.
The theory is to use streets that already have few cars traveling along them and are generally one street away from a main arterial. Urban greenways need to control the speed of car traffic with stop signs, speed bumps, street diverters. Street diverters limit cars speeding through the neighborhood, and can be green spaces too.
The big cost of greenways is the engineered elements needed to get across busy commercial busy roads safely – traffic signals and sidewalk ramps. That is a $100,000 button CM Bagshaw is pushing.
We aren’t just connecting to and through parks and other community places, we want to make the streets themselves places of that people enjoy being in. Greenways are for walkers.
As you all know, Seattle Parks make up a little more than 10% of Seattle’s property. The fact is, in most cities close to 30% of land mass is devoted to cars – land is our most valuable resource and we’ve given most of it over to parking and moving cars. Greenways take back just a bit of that land and remake streets as places for people. We’re all about walking and biking and safe streets, but we believe in more than just slowing traffic. Streets can be places for gardens, trees, furniture, storm water retention.
All the images so far have been from Vancouver. Vancouver has a lot of greenways. They and Portland are our inspiration.
Portland’s greenways are great public space too with trees, benches, and bioswales
You’ve seen our vision of greenways. What have we been doing to make it a reality? Two years ago Bands of Green report and SNG presented a vision in Seattle. Two years later, staff and politicians in the City of Seattle have fully embraced the idea of greenways, with 7 miles completed and investments actually far in excess of $5 million for safe green streets construction that were recommended by local greenways groups all over the city. How did we do it?
we formed a coalition. We started with three groups that felt they were going nowhere with great plans and funding. Again, SDOT, Council, Advocacy groups just weren’t interested.
We grew. There was a ton of excitement by community, City Council. Many of the people who led GW groups had never been involved in community organizing before , in building a group. Many greenways organizers ended up joining their community councils.
There’s been tremendous excitement. What SNG has been working on in 2012 identifying streets that have the potential to be great greenway routes. 23 groups met many times, huge investment of local energy.
That led to this level of investment
We’ve had extraordinary success getting City investments in Greenways this year.
We take time to celebrate our successes. It is a great way to build partnerships with the community and other organizations.
We wrangled 8 candidates in our Mayoral Forum.
Memorial walks, bike rides vigils focus attention on dangerous streets and intersections and motivate the community and the city to invest in real changes.
local neighborhoods are key to making these places and greenways work. There is no way even in an economically robust city, like Vancouver, that a city can maintain, at a high level, these public spaces-- It is only when the city reaches out and actively supports volunteers to do street maintenance that this kind of public space becomes loved and well maintained.
Ask for their advice and support to implement Bands of Green and beyond. Tell story of Tupper Greenway Park. Story of Tupper ” Vancouver resident, Ann Robertson has been involved with the Tupper Neighbourhood Greenway, the largest of its kind in Vancouver, since it officially open in June 2008. The greenway was a culmination of a four-year collaborative effort by Sir Charles Tupper Secondary School and its students, the Tupper Integrated Neighbourhood Greenway Association, and the City of Vancouver. “It has been quite positive for our community. We see people using the gardens in many different ways. Children from the local elementary school come here and ride their bikes and climb on the boulders,” explains Robertson. “We also have all sorts of older people come here, some do Tai Chi in the garden, and musicians come to have little impromptu music sessions. It has really been terrific for our neighbourhood. I would encourage anyone who is thinking about it, to get involved. It is a great way to build community and get to know your neighbours.”- See more at: http://urbansystems.staging.sitecm.com/news/seattle-group-re-imagines-streets-as-places-for-people.htm#sthash.IZw1Jwni.dpuf