23rd Ave Complete Streets coming our way!

Mr. Crane:


Thank you for the email on the 23rd Avenue project.


Over the last two weeks we learned SDOT will receive grant funding for 23rd Avenue.  With the recent information on award of the grants, we are evaluating the improvements that will be included in the project.  The project will not simply repave 23rd Avenue; we are evaluating each of the following items you identified in your email:

  • Rechannelization
  • Bike Facilities
  • Sidewalk Widening
  • Improvements to transit service

In addition, the project will include signal improvements, pavement reconstruction, storm drainage improvements, and street light improvements.  We are working on the Complete Streets checklist and are also considering freight mobility and urban forestry management. 


However, the project will not fund public art, pedestrian scaled lighting, or art/pedestrian improvements such as crosswalk or sidewalk treatment; therefore, we would recommend that The Central Area Neighborhood Council focus on those areas when preparing Street Fund grants. 


At this time we have not determined whether the schedule is affected by the recent receipt of the grants, but are continuing to evaluate the scope, schedule and budget and possible phasing of the 23rd Avenue project.


I was recently named the project manager for the design phase of the 23rd Avenue project. If you have questions in the future, please send an email to me at [email protected].





Sue Byers

206-733-9076 (Tel)








To: Hahn, Peter; Chang, Dongho

Cc: McGinn, Mike; Rasmussen, Tom

Subject: 23rd Ave. Street Improvements


Mr. Peter Hahn, Director

Seattle Department of Transportation

Reference: SDOT repaving project for 23rd Avenue South Dear Mr. Hahn,


I am writing concerning the SDOT repaving project for 23rd Avenue South in Seattle’s Central District scheduled for 2013.  The Jackson Place community and the Central Area community as a whole is very excited that SDOT received funding to improve the mobility of automobiles, bikes, and pedestrians through our neighborhood.  However, we are concerned that the current scope of work for this project does not take full advantage of this opportunity to fulfill the policy goals outlined in the Seattle City Council’s Complete Streets Ordinance 122386 passed in 2007.

23rd Ave S from Madison to I-90 is seeing unprecedented growth in multi-family apartment buildings and will soon see a major commercial investment in the redevelopment of the Promenade 23 shopping center.  These new households and businesses will increase the demand for safe pedestrian environments and alternative modes of transportation such as bikes and bus.

Our understanding of the proposed project as currently envisioned is to simply repave the existing street.  This would be a mistake.  We hope you will re-examine this project through the lens of the Complete Streets Checklist and identify additional improvements such as:

1.       Rechanneling the street from a four lane to two lanes plus a turning lane, similar to what was done on Nickerson Street.  Our understanding is the current traffic volume is well under the 20,000 vehicles per day threshold for considering rechanneling.

2.       Creating bike lanes on both sides of the street per the Seattle Bike Master Plan’s recommended bicycle facilities.

3.       Widening the sidewalks and increasing the pedestrian scaled lighting opportunities to encourage walking and increase safety at night per the Pedestrian Master Plan and the Pedestrian Lighting Citywide Plan.

4.       Adding a public art component to build on the Jackson Street Mural Program’s success.

5.       Improvements to transit service like real time arrival information signs, bus bulbs, signal priority for buses, and exploring whether removal of some stops would improve service.

SDOT staff have informed us that additional grants applications are promising so we hope you will consider delaying this paving projects until the additional funds can be secured to make 23rd Ave S. a true complete street.

Thank you for considering our request.




Paul B. Crane ASLA

Jackson Place Community Council Transportation and Traffic Committee

Seattle, WA. 98144




Paul Byron Crane ASLA, BLA, MA,

Landscape Architect / Whole Systems Design

Seattle, Washington 98144

United States

“If you dam the river it stagnates. Running water is beautiful. So be a channel”.

D.H. Lawrence


FREE Rain Garden Class

“Sustainable Low Impact Development Design; Global to Local, Macro to Micro”

St. Marys School Building, 611  20th Ave. South (look for signs to classroom)

November 17th,  2 pm to 4 pm

RSVP.  [email protected]  NOTE: You do not have to RSVP to take the class but it allows me to know how many to plan for.


In this class you will learn about Low Impact Development Design elements integrated in wholisitic place making featuring built examples of innovative cutting edge greenroofs and stormwater conveyance system designs and techniques in the western Harbor (Vasta hamen) and the Green Roof Institute, Malmo, Sweden, High Point Development and SEA Streets Seattle, Washington.

You will learn about various technical design details and best management practices to design and implement successful various Low Impact Development Design stormwater conveyance systems.

You will learn Rain Garden design and construction details from viewing photographs of a “hands on” design/build rain garden charrette and installation.


Water is not just a resource but a force whose energy and spirit waits to be rediscovered as a ribbon unifying and linking. Its spirit emulates this and become the dominant Genus Loci serving as a nexus embracing all site elements, natural and manmade. Re-uniting rainwater; with groundwater; with river water, oceans and lakes in hierarchical ribbons, form a water conveyance system tapestry, adding cultural capital, providing a bonding life experience of community placemaking to sites natural and manmade elements.


This class will cover the “macro” definition of sustainable Low Impact Development design strategies. These strategies emphasize conservation and use of natural site features integrated with distributed, small scale stormwater controls that closely mimic natural pre-development hydrologic patterns in residential, commercial and industrial site development. This book shows the symbiotic relationship of these strategies nested in a series of hierarchical concepts of global sustainable low impact development design’s fostering a nexus between man and nature in an urban context. Knowledge and understanding of dynamic low impact development design and its placemaking opportunities globally, regionally, in your city, and in your neighborhood will be presented.

This class will cover the “micro” technological design/build aspects of rain garden design, a foundation of these Low Impact Development stormwater control “tools” as required by many government jurisdictions to protect ground and surface water impacted by development.

This class presents what you are ultimately trying to achieve. And through pictorial examples answers the questions by; defining terms, showing a Low Impact Development Palette of techniques and presents Low Impact Development as functional place making.


The western Harbor Area (Vastra hamen) sustainable city district is Malmo, Sweden’s “city for people and the environment”. Photographic examples of sustainable urban design whose place making constructs is created by sustainable Low Impact Development technology shows examples of a hierarchical scale of public and private spaces with Low Impact Development as their primary design construct. These photographic examples of low impact development city/waterfront interface show the flow of water from the headwaters of a bio-swale and its journey to the sea. This class includes a presentation of Augustenborg, Malmo Sweden’s Botanical Green Roof Garden of the Green Roof Institute. The class captures a global sense of sustainable design by presenting examples of living roofs featuring’ Roof gardens capturing lost urban habitat and lost green space while mitigating for carbon and building energy loss, Roof gardens integration of alternative energy systems, Roof Garden opportunities for urban agriculture, Roof garden place making, and Roof gardens plant palettes.


This class includes a presentation of Seattle, Washington’s Residential High Point Development low impact development’s stormwater drainage techniques. High Point is an extensive network of low impact development techniques woven together in public streetscapes and private open space, a model of greening mixed income medium density residential with low impact development stormwater infrastructure. Included is a presentation of Seattle, Washington’s ‘SEA Streets low impact development streetscape design; curb less street edge alternatives to traditional stormwater infrastructure, innovative storm water drainage improvements as public infrastructure, and Community interface.


The Design/Build Rain Garden Design and Construction presentation includes; a an extensive presentation of the technical details of designing and building a rain garden through a pictorial depiction of the authors low impact development design/design build class as taught through Sustainable Seattle, in Seattle Washington, US. This class documentation includes; detailed technical examples of a Low Impact Design Rain Garden design techniques that include; site assessment, soil analysis, site hydrology, site mapping & analysis, site planning & layout, site planting design, construction, and maintenance


The rain running off our roofs, roads and yards is the biggest source of pollution.  We all contribute to this pollution, and we can all help solve this problem by applying Low Impact Development techniques that slow the runoff down and treat the water.  This book introduces and inspires you to creative Low Impact Development and gives you an example of a hands-on experience building a basic rainwater treatment facility, the rain garden.

This class covers what sustainable Low Impact Development design is, what it means to you and its context in the neighborhood, city, regionally, nationally and globally, and its nexus with the in line rain garden design concept.


Class teacher Bio.


Paul Byron Crane ASLA, BLA, MA, Landscape Architect,

I have traveled internationally to explore and document (photography, sketches, stakeholder interviews.) built examples of sustainable design and have engaged local designers and government representatives in a discussion of their sustainable design development (Denmark, Sweden, England, and Japan).I am a member of the Cascadia and U.S. Green Building Councils that have provided a wealth of instruction for sustainable design. By meeting, discussing and touring sustainable developments with stakeholders associated with sustainable design, weaves my rich tapestry of knowledge concerning both regional, national and international emerging design opportunities, enabling me to obtain a robust, broad, contextual  understanding of the cultural, economic and political aspects of “Green Development”. Site’s visited include: the Western Harbor of Malmo Sweden, Green roof’s of Augustenborg, Malmo Sweden, Green Architecture of Copenhagen Denmark, Bed-ZED, Wallington,  South London, England, Meeting and tour with the Faculty of the University of Tokyo Center for Sustainable Urban Regeneration, Tokyo, Japan, Coal Harbor and new Convention Center expansion, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.

Sustainable Central District Facebook Page

The Sustainable Central District is a new face book page to promote a Sustainable Central district. Come share your ideas, what you have seen and experiences, start a dialogue and implement! Check out the Vancouver Bike post. Join and pass it on to your friends to join. Just log in to Facebook and search for Sustainable Central District.

Shakespeare in Judkins Parks Returns

Shakespeare in the Park

GreenStage presents “Taming of the Shrew”

Friday, July 20

7 p.m.

Judkins Park, stage near 22nd and Charles

Come see live, FREE theatre in the park with GreenStage’s production of Shakespeare’s gender gap comedy. Bring a picnic!

Shakespeare in the Park

GreenStage presents “Henry VIII”

Friday, July 27

7 p.m.

Judkins Park, stage near 22nd and Charles

Come see live, FREE theatre in our very own Judkins Park with this historical drama based on a true story!

President Obama’s Re-Election Headquarters for Seattle Coming to Jackson Place

President Obama’s Presidential re-election headquarters for the City of Seattle is coming to Jackson Place. The grand opening is 3:30 Pm this Thursday at 901 Rainier Ave. S. at the corner of S. Charles St. and Rainier Ave. S.

EDITOR’S UPDATE: The Obama campaign website has more details on the headquarters launch party, which will feature Democratic candidate for governor Jay Inslee:

On Thursday, May 3, please join Organizing for America-Washington and Jay Inslee for Governor as we open our new Seattle headquarters!

Come learn how to get involved, and meet Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Chair of the Democratic National Committee, and Jay Inslee, the next Governor of Washington State.

Thursday, May 3, 2012 3:30 PM – 4:30 PM
OFA Washington
Contact Phone:
206 395 2116
NEW Seattle Campaign Headquarters (Seattle, WA)

901 Rainier Ave S
Seattle, WA98144

No more free zone/hearing

Ride Free Area Open House March 29

The Ride Free Area in downtown Seattle is scheduled to be eliminated in September.

At the same time, riders will begin paying when entering the bus for all trips.

Metro is currently working with Sound Transit, Community Transit, and the city of Seattle on an implementation plan for the Ride Free Area changes. This includes options to address transportation needs for low or no-income people who use the Ride Free Area to travel to essential services in the downtown area.

You can learn more and comment one of these ways:

Public Open House: Thursday, March 29, 4-6:30 p.m. Union Station Great Hall, 401 S. Jackson St., Seattle

Reasonable accommodations for people with disabilities, or interpreters for people with limited English are available upon request by calling 206-684-1154. TTY Relay: 711

Phone message:Email: [email protected]

206-296-7643 206-263-9988 (Español) 206-263-9674 ()

Online: www.kingcounty.gov/metro/howtoride

Traffic Circle and Streetside Garden Competition

Jackson Place Traffic Circle and Street Side Gardens Competition Spring 2012


Like a spring bouquet, the plantings in curb bulbs, traffic circles and planting strips are gifts from businesses or gardeners that share the beauty of nature with the public.

Jackson Place received its first traffic circles over twenty five years ago allowing the public’s role in beautifying Jackson Place and Seattle’s streets. Most of these circles are tended by intrepid gardeners that face frequent frustration as their streetside gardens are often run over, which compacts soil and crushes plants, and often curbs enthusiasm and commitment.

Despite the challenges, gardeners who hang in long enough to see their gardens bloom enjoy expanding their gardening space, meeting new friends and making their neighborhood safer.

Looking for a few good gardeners


To qualify for the Jackson Place contest, traffic circles must be located within the Jackson place neighborhood (S. Jackson to the North, Rainier Avenue to the West, 23

rd Ave. S to the East and I-90 to the South) Mature trees should be limbed up to 8 feet at the trunk and young trees pruned so they don’t block visibility. Traffic circles at an intersection cannot contain any unapproved objects such as rocks or posts and understory plants must be maintained at or below 24 inches. The understory plant height for streetside gardens beyond the 30-foot envelope is a maximum of 30 inches tall.

Contest Garden Categories


  • Best Habitat in the Round
  • Circle Garden for Kids
  • Car stopping Beautiful
  • Just for Fun
  • Edible Circle
  • Business Gateway
  • Ruin to the Rescue
  • Multi-season spectacular


Judging criteria

Judges (TBD) will be professional landscape designers, architects and community members.


They will be evaluating; innovative creative design, use of color and foliage, seasonal interest, quality of maintenance and plant health, and good gardening practices. The finalists will represent the best of unique design and personality, as well as their choice of plant selection, with emphasis on drought tolerance, pest and disease resistance, effective use of color and foliage, seasonal interest, quality of maintenance and plant health, good gardening practices, unique design and personality, plant selection: drought tolerance, pest/disease resistance, no invasives.

Deadlines and Contact Information

If you are interested in participating please indicate this by sending your name, circle/streetside garden location and category you want to be judged by subscribing to [email protected]  by March 30, 2012 Judging will occur at a date to be determined in early June.

If you have an interest in being a judge contact Paul B. Crane at [email protected]

Look for future posts on the Jackson Place list serve and web site.

Free Rain Garden Classes and more.



Central District – November 14, 6:30-8:30pm 

2100 Building

2100 24

th Ave S. 98144


Come find out about this rain garden in your neighborhood, at  Green Plate Special, installed as part of the Sustainable Rain project.


We would like for more rain gardens to grow in the Central District and we have $1,000 to fund a rain garden at a business or residence in the CD.  Come learn how to build one!




What will happen at this free workshop:

  • There will be coffee and food!,
  • Locally produced presentation on stormwater pollution, the Puget Sound, and what you can do,
  • Training on how to build your own rain garden from Paul Crane, local landscape architect,
  • Pictures and stories from Sustainable Rain – rain garden projects at Seattle businesses and organizations in four neighborhoods,
  • Information on funding available for a business or residential rain garden in each of these neighborhoods.


It’s best to pre-register: www.brownpapertickets.com or go directly to: http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/209051


Questions: Contact Amy Waterman at [email protected] 

Funded by: Russell Family Foundation, Sponsored by: Sustainable Rain (http://bit.ly/ssrain ) of Sustainable Seattle (www.sustainableseattle.org)