The District 3 case for Prop 1, the Move Seattle levy

Screen Shot 2015-10-24 at 10.12.21 PMAt nearly a billion dollars over its lifetime, Proposition 1, or Move Seattle, a $930 million dollar dollar property tax levy spanning nine years to fund transportation infrastructure throughout Seattle, dwarfs any other transportation investment Seattle has seen before. So, what’s in it for Capitol Hill and District 3?

Move Seattle will pick up where its predecessor — the $365 million dollar Bridging the Gap transportation levy which is set to expire this year — leaves off. Since its enactment nine years ago, Bridging the Gap has funded nearly twenty-five percent of the Seattle Department of Transportation’s budget. Those levy funds were spent conducting basic transit infrastructure maintenance like repaving streets and replacing street signs, as well as beginning investments in infrastructure for alternate transportation modes such as Broadway’s current protected bike lane. SDOT has a handy map of successful projects financed by Bridging the Gap.

Move Seattle continues this basic maintenance work, with an extra emphasis on accommodating growth and reducing congestion by accommodating all modes of transportation on Seattle’s streets.

“We are growing pretty quickly,” says Shefali Ranganathan, a Capitol Hill resident and deputy director at Transportation Choices Coalition, a non-profit transit advocacy organization that is backing Move Seattle. Everyone knows Ranganathan’s not exaggerating. After adding 14,000 people in 2014 alone (and 100,000 over the last twenty years), Seattle is expected to add 120,000 new residents in the next twenty years. And with that has come increased traffic. Earlier this year Seattle was ranked as the 5th most congested city in the U.S.

“We don’t have room on the streets any more to accommodate [more] cars. We have to give people workable options to get around,” said Ranganathan.

Seattle has talked a lot about how to make it easier to get around in various capacities. Over the years the city has developed four different transportation “master” plans: pedestrian, bicycle, transit (light rail, metro), and freight.

Move Seattle integrates these four plans — in addition to Vision Zero, the city’s game plan for eliminating traffic collision injuries and deaths — in its prioritizing of specific multi-modal projects that SDOT will implement over the next nine years, in addition to its allocating the total $900 million into three funding categories: $206 million into Safe Routes (bike lanes, crosswalks, safe routes to schools), $420 million into Maintenance and Repair (road repaving, seismic upgrades for bridges, and urban forestry trimming and planting), and $302 million into Congestion Relief, which funds seven rapidride bus projects, traffic signal timing improvements, site-specific road improvements at congestion points, and bike lanes and greenways dictated by the bicycle master plan.

SDOT released a updated, year-by-year project spending plan earlier this week, which you can view here.

“Whether you bike, walk, take a bus, or even drive, there is something in Move Seattle [that] makes it easier for you to get around,” said Ranganathan.

Move Seattle has a lot for Capitol Hill and Central Seattle. For one, South Dearborne is getting repaved. Then there’s protected bike lanes on a slew of District 3 streets, such as East Union street, ML King Jr Way South, Yesler Way, 12th Avenue East, and a completion of the Broadway bikeline that currently ends just before East Denny Way. Eastlake’s Fairview Avenue North bridge—the last remaining rickety timber-supported bridge in the city—is getting replaced. 17 Central Seattle streets are slated to become pedestrian and cyclist friendly neighborhood greenways to further connect neighborhoods.

Some of the bigger additions for Central Seattle are the Madison Street and 23rd Avenue Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) projects, which will create high capacity, all-electric buses to run along the length of both streets in designated BRT-only lanes stopping at brand new bus shelters with Orca card pay-before-boarding functions.

“What you’re guaranteed is a super reliable trip all the way up and down madison,” said Ranganathan in reference to the Madison Street BRT. “It will be completely separated from traffic so that makes for a quicker ride.”

The heavy focus on pedestrian and bike friendly investments has bicycle activists enthused, especially when it comes to inching closer to realizing Vision Zero, the city’s goal of eliminating all injuries and death caused by traffic collisions by 2030. Though traffic accidents (and the resulting injuries or deaths) have decreased by 30 percent over the last decade, the City estimates that there roughly 30 collisions per day in Seattle, and that 150 people sustain life-changing injuries from collisions annually, while an estimated 20 die each year. In 2013, 23 people died and 155 people were seriously injured by traffic estimates. But the possibility of the levy not passing has some bike and pedestrian transit activists worried.

“If it doesn’t pass it’s pretty bad,” said Brock Howell of the Cascade Bicycle Club. “It would be difficult to imagine how any of them [the various modal plans] could be implemented in any sort of way unless this gets funded. And those modal plans are really the road map for implementing Vision Zero.”

Move Seattle also includes revamping 12th Ave East into a Safety Corridor through lower speed limits, bike lanes, better traffic signal timing, sidewalks and crosswalks, and the addition of curb bulbs. Howell points to the levy’s investment in Safety Corridors as being crucial to achieving Vision Zero.

“90% of collisions that result in serious injury or death are on the arterials. If we can’t get those safety corridor projects then we probably are not going to make a dent in the reduction [of injuries and deaths],” said Howell.

“Basically the idea for vision zero is that people are fallible. They make mistakes,” said Brie Gyncild, co-leader of Central Seattle Greenways. “So we need to make infrastructure safe. That means safer crosswalks, safer biking facilities, safer streets.”

“Many of those pieces are part of the bread and butter projects that the levy would invest in…SDOT wants to invest in those projects but they’re contingent on funding. And much of that funding will come from the levy,” she added.

For transit safety advocates, Move Seattle’s investments in Safe Routes to School are also crucial for achieving Vision Zero. The levy intends to allocate funds for pedestrian and cyclist safety infrastructure (such as speed bumps, crosswalks, sidewalks, and bike parking) up to a mile out from Seattle’s schools to make it easier for kids to walk or bike to school, reducing dependency on parent chauffeuring by car. The levy also prioritizes 12 schools with high rates of students on free and reduced lunch programs to get the additional infrastructure within three years of the levy passing.

TCC’s Ranganathan says that Safe Routes to School can reduce transit costs for low-income and cost burdened households. “Second to housing, transportation is your largest cost,” she said.

The Central District’s Bailey Gatzert Elementary is one of the schools slated for a priority Safe Routes to Schools investment. The school sits at the corner of 12th and Yesler, an intersection which Gyncild with Central Seattle Greenways calls “horrendous.” “It’s incredibly busy and chaotic, especially since the streetcar went in,” she said

“We know low income families have a harder time getting their kids to school and getting their kids a good education,” said Howell with the Cascade Bicycle Club. “That’s why those 12 schools have been prioritized.”

“There’s a certain element of both intersectionality [and] a real commitment to trying to be equitable,” said Zachary Pullin of the Capitol Hill Community Council.

We’re always going to be playing a little bit of catch up, but I’d rather we play catch up then not do anything and let it get worse.”

So how much is this all going to cost? It’s a turn-off for some critics, who decry Seattle’s heavy reliance on property tax levies. The expiring $365 million dollar Bridging the Gap levy cost the median homeowner an estimated $130 dollars per year. Move Seattle will renew that annual cost and tack on an extra $145 dollars (or an extra $12 dollars per month), bringing the total to around $275 dollars. Ranganathan estimates that the burden will be shared roughly 50/50 between residential property owners and commercial and apartment and properties. She makes note that the distribution could get even wider given the pace of development in Seattle.

“It’s a big pill to swallow because it is a large number, but it’s not divided between four households but a whole city,” said Pullin. “It will do a lot to increase access to affordable transportation options for folks.”

The levy has come under fire from critics (mainly the Seattle Times editorial board) for being both unaccountable and non-specific in how it will spend its funding. While the levy does fund very specific projects (e.g the Madison street BRT and the Fairview bridge replacement), it’s true that the levy doesn’t allocate all of the revenue to hyper specific projects within the broader funding categories. Ranganathan says this is necessary to give SDOT some flexibility as the city grows. “It’s hard to say what the city will look like 9 years from now.”

Like Bridging the Gap, Move Seattle will have a levy oversight committee appointed by the city council and the mayor. In addition, funds around bound to their designated categories, and require a seven-member vote by the City Council to be moved to another category or “big downtown projects [like the Bertha tunnel]” as some critics fear. To prioritize and vet future projects, SDOT will use a rubric with a number of factors. Projects will be prioritized based on overlap between the various modal plans, the immediacy of need for safety improvements (such as streets and corridors that experience a high number of collisions), and how much Federal grant money can be leveraged to match levy monies.

Both of District 3’s City Council candidates support the levy, but have their own concerns and skepticism. Socialist council member Kshama Sawant is all for projects in Move Seattle but she’s skeptical of SDOT’s ability to follow through.

“While the levy is advertised to pay for many important projects and probably will, SDOT is not legally bound to use it for those projects,” wrote Sawant in an email. “After voters pass the levy, I look forward to playing a key oversight role on the council and ensuring we get the best possible transit outcomes for our money.” She went on to call for a millionaire’s tax and a commercial parking tax to replace property taxes which she sees as regressive.

Sawant’s opponent, Urban League CEO Pamela Banks, also supports the levy, but has qualms with some of its proposals. At a recent candidates forum at Seattle University, Banks condemned road diets. In a statement sent to CHS on Move Seattle, she called the current construction on 23rd Ave — the groundwork for making 23rd a Multimodal Transit Corridor — a “mess,” and said she would keep an eye on SDOT to ensure they complete projects in a timely manner.

No one thinks Move Seattle will solve all of Seattle’s transit and traffic problems. But advocates see it as a necessary next step for Seattle.

“If we don’t do anything, it’s [congestion] only to get worse,” says Ranganathan. “We’re always going to be playing a little bit of catch up, but I’d rather we play catch up then not do anything and let it get worse.”

 

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50 thoughts on “The District 3 case for Prop 1, the Move Seattle levy

  1. Trusting Scott Kubly, the Mayor and the kooks that will make up the city council to wisely spend a billion dollars on transportation is frightening. This is not cheap for a Capitol Hill homeowner. Renters never think these things affect them but they do. Vote NO!

      • This was the same kind of reasoning against the last effort to raise money to support improved transit efficiency, walking and biking in 2011 — “Streets for All Seattle”. I contributed a few weeks of my rent money to that campaign.

        The opponents argued that the city needed to come back with a better funding source than the VLF. And it was indeed defeated (partially because the organizers behind the campaign did a really poor job, and were not focused on their campaign’s success.)

        And yeah, that meant 5 years of nothing happening until someone put together a new plan – Move Seattle.

        If you guys think that voting ‘NO’ on this means we’re just gonna get a better plan next year — good luck with that.

  2. Today’s column by Danny Westneat in the Seattle Times is a must read on this subject. I do not believe that the City can manage all of these projects satisfactorily, nor should we believe all these projects will be completed. I would vote for a shorter, more realistic plan that can be monitored and evaluated.

    Seattle area governments has a history of presenting deceptive levies and then cutting back after they get the money. See Sound Transit, for example.

    • I hope as many people as possible will read Danny’s column. He documents how the City has been very disingenuous in claiming that they have met certain goals under Bridging the Gap, whereas in fact they did this by changing the goal line! It certain gives one pause in approving a much larger levy this time around. I just don’t think the City (especially SDOT, a very dysfunctional department) can be trusted to spend the almost-billion dollars wisely.

      • A billion dollars for a spending plan that’s “advisory only and not mandatory”. You would have to be nuts to vote for this plan. And remember this levy isn’t even the only one on THIS BALLOT, let alone the next 9 years. And then people complain about sky-high rents and want rent control. Lunacy.

    • Agreed. All those idiots who voted for Sound Transit Light Rail must be hating themselves for it.

      Or maybe they’re just really glad we finally have the beginning of a well-run rail system — even if it cost a bit more than expected?

      • I’m all for light rail and will vote for any future initiatives which expand the system. We have needed an extensive subway-type system in this region for decades….it is the one thing which for sure will improve mobility for many citizens.

        But Move Seattle is an entirely different thing….it is very unlikely that it will improve our traffic situation significantly, even IF SDOT spends the money wisely, and that is a very big IF.

      • Part of having a rail network that works is having safe ways to walk to the stations and having efficient buses feed those stations. Not to mention light rail takes decades to implement. Move Seattle will make concrete improvements starting next year that will make sure we’re ready as light rail stations open. It seems odd to be in favor of spending billions on light rail but then to say you’re opposed to funding the much smaller scale improvements that will make that rail system accessible to more people.

  3. I encourage everyone in Seattle to read the text of Proposition 1. Of course, actually finding the text is a challenge. It’s nowhere to be found on the Let’s Move Seattle website. And It’s not in the voter guide you got in the mail. You can find it by going to kingcounty.gov, scroll down and under “services” click on “voting and elections.” Then on that page, under “related departments,” click on “elections home page.” From there, find the “November general elections” section and click on “ballot initiatives.” From the next page, scroll all the way down to “Seattle (City of).” Then click on “Proposition 1.” But that only gives you the text of the voter guide. Scroll all the way down to the bottom of that page and click on “complete text of resolution.” After you’ve drilled all the way down to the actual text, you can see for yourself that the proposition is a more-than-$900 million blank check (written in legalese), with no actual plan and no accountability — just a bunch of aspirational ideas that city functionaries are completely free to ignore if they want (see the bottom of page 8 and the top of page 9 of the text – “the Spending Breakdown is illustrative only and shall not be mandatory.”). And the oversight committee is a joke. It has no power. It just issues reports. (And it’s stacked with council and mayoral appointees.)

    I bike regularly and and take public transit every day. But Proposition 1 is a sham, dressed up in a slick ad campaign. Vote No.

    • So you want to vote on the exact crosswalks that will get repainted? Every single curb ramp in the city that will be made ADA accessible? The explicit designs for how safe routes to school are implemented? You want this to be in the Proposition text? It would take months to even build such a comprehensive list and it would be out of date in 2 years because the minor details change over time. By saying there isn’t a plan is completely disingenuous and unfair. The categories and intent are specified, and it’s up to city council, us the voters, the advisory board, and basically democracy to ensure SDOT doesn’t start doing stuff with the money that voters didn’t intend. This is hardly different than how the annual SDOT budgets are created an implemented.

  4. All of these complaints about how it’s open-ended: imagine the opposite, where the set of projects was set in stone, to be pursed no matter what. A year in, and the results of an environmental impact statement make clear that one of the projects is going to be much more expensive than believed. With the approach you’re all advocating, the city would have to pursue it no matter what, instead of being able to say, OK, that no longer makes as much sense, let’s restructure the transportation plan in that part of the city to account for that new information. And everyone would have their heads for continuing to thrown millions of dollars down the drain on a bad project. The city is building in the flexibility needed for a complex, interlocking set of projects.

    The simple fact is that Seattle needs a *lot* of transportation work done, across many modes. We’re backlogged because of the recession, plus we’re facing enormous growth. So, yes, it’s more expensive than past levies, but still completely necessary.

    Don’t believe me, the semi-anonymous blog poster? Read the list of endorsers of Prop 1, as well as the funders. As yourself, if all the arguments people were raising about it were true, would that be the case? Then read the same for the opponents, look up their records, and ask yourself how much of their overall vision of the city you share.

    Then read the text of the proposal yourself, with an open mind about how complex it is to substantially upgrade the city’s infrastructure and make it work for a population that is much larger and denser than it has been in the past, in a way that provides a real host of transportation alternatives for all kinds of folks.

    Finally, ask yourself: if we postpone all of these projects, what do you think will happen? Do you believe that any one of them will magically become cheaper? In fact, no, they’ll be more expensive. In part because if this doesn’t pass, SDOT will need to lay off about 1/4 of their staff, only to then rehire and retrain new people another year or two down the line when we pass a different levy. Throwing money down the drain in the process.

    For all these reasons: vote yes, PLEASE!!!

    • You say “flexibility,” I say blank check.

      I realize that any organization has to have some degree of adaptability to account for unforeseen circumstances. But no responsible organization — and certainly no responsible government accountable to the people — should able to extract a billion dollars from its stakeholders and then have the ability to do WHATEVER it wants to with it, notwithstanding the promises made when collecting it. That’s called fraud.

      If Let’s Move wanted some flexibility in the joints, it could have easily drafted a sound proposal with some give in the event of changed circumstances — like rebates in the event of a failure to deliver, or providing for a separate contingency fund, or, God forbid, actually having an accountable oversight committee with some actual enforcement authority.

      But they didn’t give us that. Instead, they gave us Gumby, a plan that is so flexible that it is no plan at all, with threats of a parade of horribles if we fail to sign on. Snake oil for Seattle in the 21st century.

      • You have obviously never worked in transportation professionally.

        Would you really want transportation funding in 2015 to be hard-coded precisely to what people thought made sense in 2005?

        You realize that if this levy passes, in 2025, about 20% of residents of Seattle will be living in housing that doesn’t even exist today – and we may need some flexibility for where and what the money is spent on?

  5. I am voting against it. I admit that Metro trying to kill the 43 colors my judgement on transit funding issues but even so. I have no problem with the money for a good levy. But for that kind of money expecting some guarantee of projects that will happen seems reasonable. A pie on the sky “illustrative” list is not good enough. I also don’t understand the idea of BRT from Rainier Beach to the ID since that is what Light Rail already does. Meanwhile the 8 is still stuck in traffic. I admit that I may have voted for it if making Denny a BRT corridor was on the list.

    • Now imagine you’re the very middle-income homeowner of a very modest home (or renter too) somewhere else in the city that doesn’t have easy access to light rail, no frequent bus service, potholed streets, and you don’t even have sidewalks. And SDOT wants you to hand them effectively a blank check for 9 years. Uh, no thanks.

      • You do remember the last levy that city of Seattle residents just imposed on themselves to specially fund increased Metro services, many of which never made it to those same neighborhoods because most of it got gobbled up disproportionally by neighborhoods like CH and the CD?

      • So you’re expecting Metro to be focusing transit service on neighborhoods that lack sufficient people to justify the ridership, at the expense of neighborhoods where the buses are turning away riders for lack of capacity?

        So, basically, you can’t see beyond your own self-interest. Got it.

      • You couldn’t be more wrong. All the money spent on Capitol Hill or the Central District WOULD be in my interest. I live near there. I’m saying get out of YOUR tightly-focused perspective and see it through the lens of someone who DOESN’T live on or near Capitol Hill, who sees their property taxes going up and up with two or more new or increasing levies on every ballot, who doesn’t see it translate to any benefit to them after years of potholed streets, shitty bus service, and no sidewalks. And then you see SDOT coming back for another $1 billion that you’re afraid will all go to Capitol Hill or other more politically visible neighborhoods, to fund a levy that doesn’t even promise to build the things it claims they will. Then ask yourself: “WHY should I vote for this…?” You really think the rest of the city should line up to support this?

  6. The basic premise of “Move Seattle” is to drag Seattle back to a 19th Century of bicycles, early 20th Century of streetcars and a late 20th Century of fixed-route busses. The 21st Century is about on-demand service. But there aren’t many lucrative government contracts to spread around in smaller common carrier vehicles, so the plan is to increase congestion by reducing travel lanes and increase inconvenience by reducing on-street parking to create the day-to-day desperation necessary to hoodwink voters into an extravagant boondoggle of historic proportions. Voting NO.

    • But if you believe the future is on-demand vehicles, why are you concerned with preserving parking? Wouldn’t that be preparing us for the future?

      By the way, I’m really enjoying these comments. It really tells the story of why Americans don’t get nice things – like cities where it’s safe to walk and bike, or rapid and efficient public transit.

    • I think I might be changing my mind on Move Seattle. I totally support reducing travel lanes and on street parking. If they just said “We need $1B to remove travel lanes and on-street parking” I would have voted for that in a second. Sadly, that is not really what Move Seattle is about.

  7. I find the debate about this perplexing.

    It seems like SDOT doesn’t have sufficient ongoing funding needed for basic, ongoing maintenance and operations.

    Why not? Why does it take a special voter levy?

    • It’s not just SDOT. This is the way the city seems to fund everything now–piecemeal, in separate levies, on every single ballot, often twice a year. Seattle gvt doesn’t seem to grasp the concept of a single comprehensive yearly budget that funds all the city’s operating expenses until the next annual budget cycle.

    • Good point. Transportation projects should primarily be funded by transportation taxes rather than property taxes. With high mileage and electric vehicles gas tax revenues are way down. The State needs to increase the gas tax and/or find alternative transportation taxes and fees. An electric car annual fee is one method. A per mile fee is another, though I have never heard a good method of implementing that one.

  8. Excuse me but isn’t Bertha still stuck underground somewhere? Or has it finally been unearthed and repaired to the tune of LOTS of extra $$$ for that little mistake?

  9. I already voted no. For many reasons cited above but also because I don’t think that metro charges enough. I drive a car sometimes to work. Others in my family take buses. The cost of a round trip bus trip is $5.00 and a month pass is several hundred a year (perhaps others can give a better quote) . The cost of a car trip is hard to exactly figure out but car ownership is many thousands a year for the car, insurance, and gas. Parking downtown alone is easily double a round trip of a bus. We give away transit to seniors for a dollar a ride (and I qualify though I can easily afford to pay full fare). No driver asks or dreams of asking for subsidies for their car driving. I pay road taxes via my property, car license taxes including a hefty subsidy for regional transit, gas taxes and more. Whether I pay the full cost is not clear. But certainly those who take transit include many who have successfully ditched their cars and enjoy a great bargain relative to the cost. It makes sense that those who can afford to pay, which is the majority of working families who have bus riders, should see their fares go up a couple bucks before taxpayers are asked to pony up more.

  10. I could not agree more with RMC’s comments, it is incumbent on us all to read the “small print” in Prop #1. A “yes” vote will result in yet another multi-year property tax levy with no parameters/ goals/expectations on fixing our streets, building sidewalks (six mayors promised this – still waiting), but first and foremost no apparent accountability to the taxpayer. In fact, we will be validating the poor planning and managerial skills of upper management at SDOT. Our elected and non-elected officials need to become “better stewards of public funds” and stopping throwing dollars at projects with no foreseeable completion date (e.g., seawall ($30M over; $5M bike rental project, etc.) By the way, re-channelization of streets does not result in better commute times for either buses or cars, nor is every tax-paying citizen in the City able to walk or ride a bike. I urge “NO” on Prop 1 – Moving Seattle.

    • I love the people that bring up sidewalks as a reason to fail levies. You realize that we could devote this entire levy to building sidewalks and still not get sidewalks everywhere. Yes we need sidewalks, but there’s just not enough money to build them all at once.

      Also, if you think construction projects going over budget is the end of the world, especially high risk ones like a freaking seawall, I would highly recommend you never get into the construction industry.

      Also, I’d like to see your credentials and traffic studies you can use to back up your commute time statement.

  11. None of the projects in the Spending Breakdown are mandatory. In fact, they are not promised at all. And projects not mentioned in theSpending Breakdown are specifically mentioned in the ordinance–streetcar building and operation, for example (and that means that any project may be funded with this money). Yes, there needs to be some flexibility. The way to do that is long-winded , but easy:

    “Sidewalks and curbs will be constructed. The City will use no less than $100 million for this project and no more than $200 million. The first sidewalks funded by the levy proceeds will be in the following census tracts (therein follow a dozen scattered census tracts). The second group of sidewalks shall be constructed in the following census tracts (more census tracts named). If there should be any additional funds left, the sidewalks shall be constructed in these census tracts (and a final list). ”

    This kind of judicious, legally binding and rational approach could have been taken by the City. Instead, the sidewalks are ‘promised’ (with the promise redrawn in the next breathe). Money could be moved from one area to another but no area would be eliminated entirely, nor could any one project–like the Seawall on the Central Waterfront–take all of the money.

    Finally, when you quote someone fromTransportation Choices Coalition, it is your duty as journalist to tell your readers that most of the funding for TCC comes from the very government agencies they are shilling for.

    Dick Falkenbury

  12. Am I the only one suspicious the Montlake Bridge was closed this weekend in addition to lanes on I-90 and 520? There was gridlock in several areas on Capitol Hill, the U-District, I-5 exits, etc. I sometimes wonder if these “projects” are planned around elections asking for more $$ for transportation.

  13. It’s obvious that we need better thinking, insightful thinking to deal with traffic problems that will only get worse. But I think we also need to demand accountability. For me past actions are a key component of support. And there has been a failure in this. Danny Westneat’s article pointed out many shortcomings. Sorry. I’m voting no. It would be bad parenting to vote yes.

  14. The Mayor and City Council should be ashamed of themselves – the largest levy in Seattle history? For basic services that any well-run city should be providing – clean streets in good repair, etc. Add this to last years Parks levy – where is the limit? The more cynical among us might think that middle-income people are being driven out of their homes so that developers may build ever more expensive housing…

  15. I am voting no for a reason other than the ones already mentioned.. I simply cannot afford another property tax increase. My assessed value just increased another 150K.
    I am single mother. Is it unreasonable for me to want to drive my kids to their various events and school or all we all expected to jump on our bicycles? Many parents have lost school bus transportation. Should their kids have to take metro even though they would have to transfer buses in the dark? Do all of you sanctimonious bicyclists just want people like me to pack up and leave? Why is our city catering to such a small population (bicycles)? Why is the ever-congested and horrific 23rd avenue being converted to two lanes to accommodate a handful of bicyclists?

    • What about all the money Prop 1 is spending money on transit and pedestrian improvements?
      Also, 23rd Ave is not being converted to two lanes to accommodate bicyclists. I wish it was! The new 23rd won’t have bike lanes. :( It will have wider sidewalks though and will be safer for peds and people waiting for the bus! :)

      • The bicycles will undoubtedly ride on the wider sidewalks. 23rd does not have bike lanes now and that does not stop them.

      • Bicyclists are envisioned to use the adjacent greenways that are being constructed on 21st Ave. New speed bumps, stop signs, bike markings. Simple stuff that makes sense and should be dirt cheap….but isn’t.

    • Actually, car crashes are the #1 violent form of death for young people in America — and the source of funding for reducing those (Vision Zero) is this prop.

      If you actually think the intent of the safety upgrades on 23rd is to accommodate bicycles, all I can say is: wow.

  16. I also will be voting no on this one. While I believe that taxes support many good things that offer real public benefit, I also believe government needs to be responsible and accountable with public funds. Prioritizing basic and critical services should be the number one responsibility of city officials, and our leaders have done a very, very poor job in this area. Prop 1 doesn’t hold them accountable, and it is a lot of money to put in their hands.

    Rather than making transportation a key part of his agenda early on, the Mayor pushed his pet projects such as free preschool. Now taxpayers have levy fatigue. It is basic budgeting that you cannot have everything you want, and our officials should have done a better job of both prioritizing and designing a realistic levy.