A Central District neighborhood group had the strange experience earlier this month of asking the city to stop work on improvements Seattle Department of Transportation claimed it asked for.
“It is heartbreaking as we were so excited to get a grant to have improvements in the Jackson Street Business District,” organizers for the Judkins Park Community Council posted about the situation. “But this project, which we may not be able to actually stop at this point, being done in our name with our hard work on getting the grant, is not acceptable.”
According to updates to the group’s Facebook page, the community council had worked with SDOT in 2017 to shape a neighborhood package of improvements the group hoped would add “infrastructure improvement to our business district between 23rd Ave S and MLK.” It was a process similar to the “Your Voice, Your Choice” project meeting CHS reported on here earlier this year.
But when SDOT announced the grants and projects this spring, the Judkins Park group found its priorities had been replaced by new projects including a “Real-time information signs (RTIS) at the bus stops at S Jackson St and 23rd Ave S,” a wider $300,000 sidewalk and bike lane, and a curb bulb near Washington Middle School on Jackson, being done, the department said in the name of the Judkins Park Community Council.
SDOT has not responded back to CHS on what went wrong in the process.
According to the community council, the larger projects near the school are under contract and moving forward but the city has said its prioritized projects have not been forgotten. The next meeting of the community council on June 6th will be dedicated to getting the projects back on the board for SDOT.