City collecting final feedback on proposed Broadway electric vehicle charging station

(Image: City of Seattle)

City of Seattle officials continue to collect community feedback on a plan to install an electric vehicle charging facility on Broadway near Capitol Hill Station.

CHS reported on the plan and official insistence that the installation would not pit Tesla owners vs. bicyclists by sabotaging future extension of the Broadway bikeway prior to a Seattle City Light-hosted open house last week.

The city says it continues to collect feedback on “the proposed EV charging location” through this Thursday, March 14th. You can add your thoughts via email at SCL_ElectricVehicles@seattle.gov.

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City officials say electric vehicle charging station won’t pit Teslas vs. bikes on Broadway

Leave it to Seattle City Hall to somehow pit proponents of electric vehicles against bicycling advocates. But a plan for a new charging station to be installed on Broadway near Capitol Hill Station has sparked a debate over the street and the city’s competing priorities for how to best put the right of way to use.

RESCHEDULED: Electric Vehicle Charging Open House

An open house originally scheduled for February but postponed by the snow will take place next week at Seattle Central to discuss a Seattle City Light plan to install two direct current (DC) fast chargers capable of powering most electric vehicles in front of the Capitol Hill Station mixed-use developments under construction at Broadway and E Denny Way.

While the city-owned chargers would power a typical car for “approximately 80+ miles of range in 30 minutes” at reasonable rate of 43 cents per kilowatt-hour, transit advocates who hope for future extension north of E Denny Way for the Broadway bikeway have noticed the station would be directly in the path. Seattle City Light says be flexible.

“In the absence of a bike lane currently, we believe this is a great location for an electric vehicle charging station,” Scott Thomsen, spokesperson for City Light tells CHS. “Should there come a time, we will be able to move our infrastructure.”

The Seattle Department of Transportation describes the situation a little differently. Continue reading

22 projects that could make Seattle District 3 streets and sidewalks safer

You have until Friday to help winnow the field of Neighborhood Street Fund community proposals for improving streets and sidewalks across District 3.

The annual process allocates funding to projects identified by citizens and often includes efforts with relatively significant budgets of $100,000 or more. Work to make John/Thomas intersections safer from Capitol Hill Station to Miller Park is one recent example of a Neighborhood Street Fund-boosted project. Continue reading

LimePods join Seattle’s crowded shared transit fleet

(Image: Lime)

We’re well on our way to a Wall-E future where everybody rides a chair.

This week, Lime — after announcing its share bikes will soon be an all-electric fleet — also rolled out its LimePods for the general public in Seattle.

“Until now, the LimePod has only been available to a select group of super users and influencers,” we’re told.

LimePods, by the way, are cars. Eventually, the plan is for an electric ‘pod fleet, too. But, for now, Lime is just another floating car share gas guzzler in this town joining BMW’s ReachNow and Daimler’s car2go floating car share brands. Continue reading

Central District e-bike showroom Electric Lady shutting down

Alex Kostelnik is getting out of the e-bike biz

One of the more future-looking retail ventures in the area is calling it quits. Here is why Electric Lady, the Central District e-bike shop in a building part of the wave of new development at 23rd and Union, is going out of business.

“(T)he business is doing well financially, but he is not enjoying the work needed to navigate what he sees as an unreliable industry where companies start up, go under, fire staff and get bought constantly,” the Seattle Bike Blog writes aboutowner Alex Kostelnik’s decision.

But Kostelnik tells SBB he was also having trouble connecting with his customers:

“They’re first time riders, but they’re not first time riders that are stepping up to the plate to hear about the community or join the community. They’re sort of strange outsider, know-it-all lonely people who aren’t really part of our community, and I don’t know where to begin with them.”

It’s not all sour grapes. Kostelnik will continue to run 20/20 Cycles just up the E Union hill and plans to include some electric bike models in his inventory. Continue reading

Capitol Hill’s Metier has new partner in Homegrown for cycling, coffee, sandwiches — and beer

(Image: Metier)

As a global brand stumbles with as much focus on fashion as cycling, Capitol Hill’s Metier is setting its own pace with a new partner on E Union.

Metier’s Todd Herriott tells CHS the decision to link up with Seattle “sustainable” sandwich shop concern Homegrown was a natural combination and will help keep the food and drink in Metier’s “Coffee and Racing” concept.

“We learned a lot,” Herriott said of Metier’s three years in the food and drink business after it opened its new headquarters combining a cafe, bike gym, and training center on E Union in late 2015. One of the lessons, Herriott said, was to find a partner to put Metier’s space more fully to use with good food connected to the space’s cycling culture. Continue reading

Seattle Parks ready to cut ribbon on new Interlaken staircase and bike runnel

Seattle has found it a major challenge to create much of its planned bike infrastructure but one important new feature for riders headed for Capitol Hill via Interlaken Blvd will be celebrated with a ribbon cutting Saturday.

The celebration for the newly completed Interlaken Park Path and Stair Upgrade will begin this Saturday at 9:30 AM (PDF) at the corner of Boyer and Howe. Continue reading

Capitol Hill gunpoint robbery suspects reportedly use bike share as getaway ride

A couple of Capitol Hill armed robbery suspects put Seattle’s robust bike share system to use for their getaway in at least one of two early morning gunpoint hold-ups reported over the weekend.

According to East Precinct radio broadcasts, a man was held up by a suspect brandishing a black handgun just after 5:30 AM Saturday morning near the QFC at Pike and Broadway. The suspect described as a white male in his 20s, around 5’7″, with a thin build, and wearing a black hat, black coat, and ripped blue jeans reportedly left the scene along with an accomplice riding Lime bikes.

The male and female duo were last seen headed west on Pike on the bikes. They were not wearing helmets. Continue reading

Uber, Lyft joining Lime as Seattle bike share providers

Seattle’s next era of bike share is about to begin and it will be powered, oddly enough, by competition between the two largest providers of motor vehicle “share” services.

Uber and Lyft will join existing vendor Lime with bikes for rent on the streets of Seattle with the fleets expected to ramp up by spring 2019, the Seattle Department of Transportation announced. Continue reading

Pike/Pine protected bike lanes? Take the survey to help reshape the ride up and down Capitol Hill

(Images: Alex Garland/Capitol Hill Housing)

Quick, before the Seattle urbanists muck it up. Capitol Hill Housing is proclaiming the first big community workshop on shaping protected Pike/Pine bike lanes a big success and organizers are collecting feedback on some of the design questions and opportunities that emerged in the October session.

CHS reported here on the effort to bring biking advocates, urbanists, neighbors, and business representatives together for a planning session to set the early tone and framework for a much needed effort to create safe cycling infrastructure between Broadway and downtown. Continue reading