Spring Fling postponed & some little things we can do while our lives are turned upside down

It’s the little things that can brighten up someone’s day. How about creating an uplifting picture or message in chalk in Gemenskap Park?

It probably goes without saying that we’ve had to postpone the EBCA Spring Fling. We’re were looking forward to bringing all our friends and family together in the park for a big event this summer. In the meantime, we’re all figuring out in our own little way how to weather the Coronavirus storm. Our lives have been turned upside down and we’re truly inspired by our neighbors who are figuring out ways to keep our way of life as normal as possible and still strive to keep all of us safe and healthy.

During these times, let’s come together as a stronger community, look out for each other, and lend a helping hand where you can. Please help our small businesses stay afloat, check on your neighbors who may need some assistance and say hello to people you walk by on the sidewalk or in the park (while remaining 6 feet apart of-course).

The following is a very short list of things we can do to help support our neighborhood. It’s not an exhaustive list by any means, but something to start with. Please send us things to share and we’ll do our best to post.

Support our local businesses
Ballard Farmers Market online ordering
Support Ballard restaurants
Tom Douglas Pop up Charitable event this Friday, Sat & Sun,(14th Ave NW and NW 52nd) 12pm-5pm

Culture
National Nordic Cultural Museum digital archives
Seattle Symphony broadcasts and recordings
Seattle opera video and audio streams
UW cherry blossom cam

Volunteer
A neighbor on Nextdoor has posted a spreadsheet where you can sign up to get help and to offer help.

Consider volunteering at the Ballard Food Bank or Ballard Urban Rest Stop

One last note
The Public Affairs team at the Seattle Fire Department has asked our assistance in distributing the following messages to provide guidance to people who may be hesitant to fully report their symptoms when calling 911, fearing that firefighters may not respond. They want to assure the public that having accurate information allows them to send the right resources, and they can trust we will be there to assist them.

The Seattle Fire Department wil respond to all life-threatening emergencies. If you suffer from a fever or shortness of breath, it doesn’t always mean you have COVID-19. If you believe your symptoms are life-threatening, please call 911. Tell the dispatcher all of your symptoms so they can better assist you.

East Ballard 2020 Your Voice Your Choice submissions so far

Since we last posted information regarding 2020 Your Voice Your Choice, we’ve received responses from neighbors who have posted their great ideas on the Map. Below are the submissions we found for East Ballard as of March 7. Take a look, write comments and click on the ‘heart’ icon if you like the idea. Is your idea missing? Then what are you waiting for? Submit by March 18. If you’re having trouble with the interface, contact us at eastballard@gmail.com and we’ll help.

The map won’t let us provide direct links, so you’ll need to navigate to the map, select the Category (Accessibility, Bicycle, Maintenance, Other, Park Equipment, Paths and Natural Areas, Pedestrian Crossing, Vehicle or Walkway) and either select the idea in the list or click on the dot on the map at the address listed below.

  • Bicycle > Idea @ 6TH AVE NW & NW 58TH ST
    Extending the 6th Ave NW Greenway, from NW 50th to NW 58th St., connecting with neighborhood schools and the NW 58th St. Greenway. Includes speed humps, speed-limit signage, stop signs at all east-west intersections, and crosswalk upgrades at NW Market St.
  • Bicycle > Idea @ 6742 DIVISION AVE NW
    Remove bike lane on 8th Ave NW heading south, replace with sharrows. bicyclists are moving too fast to safely use the bike lane without risking getting doored.
  • Bicycle > Idea @ 4513 11TH AVE NW
    Make signage/road features to stop drivers driving down bike lane
  • Bicycle > Idea @ 4300 8TH AVE NW
    Redesign the intersection of 8th, Burke Gilman and NW 43rd St
  • Maintenance > Idea @ 6TH AVE NW & NW 43RD ST
    Prune and shape the beautiful plum trees between Leary Way NW and NW Bright St. on 6th Ave. NW.
  • Other > Idea @ 1451 NW 46TH ST
    Close off road between Ballard Blocks and PCC/West Marine to vehicle traffic
  • Other > Idea @ 1102 NW 57TH ST
    traffic circle NW 57th and 11th needed.
  • Other > Idea @ 1102 NW 56TH ST
    traffic circle NW 56th and 11th needed
  • Park Equipment > Idea @ 6102 14TH AVE NW
    Off Leash Dog Park extension north of Gemenskap Park.
  • Pedestrian Crossing > Idea @ 6500 8TH AVE NW
    They should remove or inactivate the pedestrian prompt crosswalk buttons and just imply that people want to cross (at least during peak pedestrian hours) like they do at NW 15th and 65th St.
  • Pedestrian Crossing > Idea @ 1103 NW MARKET ST
    Pedestrian and Bicycle activated crossing signal at the intersection of 11th Ave NW and Market St.
  • Pedestrian Crossing > Idea @ 716 NW 60TH ST
    Crosswalk at 8th Ave NW and NW 60th St
  • Pedestrian Crossing > Idea @ 602 NW MARKET ST
    Bicycle traffic light trigger. Not enough time to cross the intersection and have bicyclists have to jump on sidewalk to push pedestrian crossing button
  • Pedestrian Crossing > Idea @ 800 NW 50TH ST
    Signalized crossing and/or curb bulbs at NW 50th St and 8th Ave NW
  • Pedestrian Crossing > Idea @ 4360 LEARY WAY NW
    Pedestrian-only light on the east side of 8th–>Leary doesn’t activate unless button pushed. Request for an automatic pedestrian light.
  • Pedestrian Crossing > Idea @ 4300 8TH AVE NW
    Stop light on NW 43rd St and 8th Ave NW
  • Pedestrian Crossing > Idea @ 599R NW 42ND ST
    Reprogram light to be a shorter wait and not require a button to be pushed
  • Pedestrian Crossing > Idea @ 4601 LEARY WAY NW
    Extremely hazardous intersection for pedestrians and drivers.
  • Pedestrian Crossing > Idea @ 1416 NW 46TH ST
    Add a pedestrian crosswalk to cross 46th St between 15th Ave NW and 14th Ave NW. Currently pedestrians are crossing from the Ballard Blocks to the PCC shopping center in the middle of the street and across heavy traffic.
  • Pedestrian Crossing > Idea @ 1505 NW 60TH ST
    Upgrade crossing signal and lights. People have to wait several minutes for the light to change and miss buses (it is a rapid ride stop).
  • Pedestrian Crossing > Idea @ 5801 15TH AVE NW
    The walk signal is very short to cross 15th Ave NW
  • Pedestrian Crossing > Idea @ 5501 15TH AVE NW
    This intersection requires me to push a beg button
  • Pedestrian Crossing > Idea @ 1446 NW LEARY WAY
    Improve pedestrian environment at 15th Ave NW and Leary
  • Vehicles > Idea @ 11TH AVE NW & NW 62ND ST
    Traffic Circle. Drivers don’t stop for other cars or pedestrians
  • Vehicles > Idea @ 5615 15TH AVE NW
    Ban left turns from 15th Ave NW onto NW 57th St
  • Vehicles > Idea @ 5500 8TH AVE NW
    Remove parked cars about 2 blocks north and south of Market St and re-allocate that space to bus lanes.
  • Vehicles > Idea @ 4902 6TH AVE NW
    Traffic diverter / street park at 6th Ave NW and NW 50th St
  • Vehicles > Idea @ 3930 LEARY WAY NW
    Stoplight for left hand turns from 3rd Ave NW onto Leary Way
  • Walkway > Idea @ 1505 NW 60TH ST
    The crosswalk signal is slow and the stop lights are out of date. (Similar to Pedestrian Idea@ 1505 NW 60TH ST)


Share your ideas for Seattle street and parks improvements – deadline March 18

Submit your ideas through March 18

Seattle Department of Neighborhoods is again engaging community members to democratically decide how to spend $2 million of the City’s budget on small-scale park and street improvements. This is the fourth year of Your Voice, Your Choice (YVYC): Parks & Streets.

Idea collection is open right now through March 18. Community members are encouraged to submit an idea online at seattle.gov/yvyc or in-person at any Seattle Public Library branch. Projects could include park benches, trail improvements, flashing beacons, and curb ramps to name a few. The only criteria are the ideas be physical improvements for Seattle’s parks or streets, benefit the public, and cost $150,000 or less. Even if you don’t have an idea, take a moment to review, comment or vote on existing ideas by selecting the like button for those you’d like to see come true!

What’s your great idea to improve streets and parks in East Ballard? If you submit an idea, please share with us and we’ll help spread the word!

Learn more about what types of projects are eligible: Idea Collection Examples. You can learn more about the YVYC process and how to get involved on the city’s webpage.


Vote for a Neighborhood Greenway along 6th Ave NW by Sept 30

You have an opportunity to VOTE YES for a neighborhood greenway along 6th Ave NW. If you don’t know what we’re talking about, then check out this video put together by the 6th Ave NW Greenway group or travel along NW 58th or 17th Ave NW to experience one yourself. Vote via Your Voice, Your Choice under District 6, Project 19-312 by Sept 30. Take a look at the other projects while you’re in there (you can vote for up to 3 per district). For additional East Ballard projects check out the crossing improvement at 15th Ave NW and NW 62nd and another one at 14th Ave NW and NW 56th as well.

If you’d like to learn more about the 6th Ave NW Greenway and/or get involved with their very active community group, check our their Facebook Page.

Click on the image to Vote today!

Upcoming safety improvements to intersections along 14th Ave NW

During our daily walks along 14th Ave NW, we’ve become curious about the white painted lines that have appeared in the intersection along 14th Ave NW north and south of Market. Our curiosity led us to contacting SDOT to find out what’s going on. We received a very prompt and helpful response from SDOT civil engineer, Oli Frenchowicz. Here’s what he had to say.

The project to install markings along 14th Ave NW in Ballard is scheduled for September (weather permitting). Our crews have quite a big backlog of street marking work due to the slow summer season start and large number of projects.
 
A contractor is scheduled in September to start the yellow line markings, and our SDOT crews will complete other marking work soon after.
 
The goal of the 14th Ave NW project was to better organize the vehicles at the intersections for improved operations, formalize the pedestrian crossing spaces, and improve visibility for pedestrians, vehicles, and cyclists operating along the corridor.
 
You may have noticed some sign work was already completed as part of this project. The parking restriction signs formalized existing parking restrictions per Seattle Municipal Code. Additionally, we designed to accommodate larger vehicle turning movements at the intersections. The parking restrictions will help larger vehicles (delivery trucks, fire trucks, garbage trucks, etc.) make the turns once the markings formalize the driving paths.

In addition, we asked Oli if they could paint a crosswalk going north/south across NW 59th on the west side of 14th at the south end of Gemenskap Park, which seems to have been left out of the original design. He advised that they would add this to their their project for consistency near the park.

Sound Transit Board identifies Ballard light rail options plus a new alternative to move forward in EIS study

On May 24, Sound Transit Board of Directors gathered to review recommendations from the West Seattle and Ballard Link Extensions advisory groups and public feedback, and identified preferred alternatives and other alternatives to study in an environmental impact statement (EIS). The Board action reflects nearly 18 months of public engagement activities, including briefings to community organizations, open houses, neighborhood forums and workshops and attendance at local festivals.

Upon reviewing the Board’s motion, the following options, plus a new alternative are going to be included in the Environmental Impact Statement:

  • Movable bridge with 15th elevated station – From elevated Interbay station, continues along 15th Avenue W and crosses Salmon Bay via a movable bridge west of the existing Ballard Bridge. Continues in an elevated guideway along 15th Avenue NW. Terminates at an elevated Ballard Station on 15th Avenue NW near NW Market Street.

  • High fixed bridge with 14th elevated station – From elevated Interbay station, continues over 15th Avenue W, crosses Salmon Bay via a fixed bridge east of the existing Ballard Bridge and continues in an elevated guideway on 14th Avenue NW. Terminates at an elevated station on 14th Avenue NW at NW Market Street.
  • Tunnel with 14th or 15th tunnel station – From Interbay station, descends into a tunnel beneath Salmon Bay. Terminates at a tunnel Ballard station with station options beneath 14th Avenue NW or east of 15th Avenue NW at NW Market Street.

New Alternative from public feedback:

  • Tunnel with 20th tunnel station – Scoping comments suggested interest in a station farther west in Ballard with a tunnel crossing under Salmon Bay and tunnel station at 20th Avenue NW.

In the coming months, you can expect additional maps and information to be posted on the project website. If you’d like to stay informed on this project, we encourage you to subscribe to updates on the Sound Transit site.

Vote to fund a greenway along 6th Ave NW for Your Voice Your Choice by May 31

(Greenway Example)

…the following is from from Groundswell NW’s May Newsletter

Greenways are a key component of the 2014 Seattle Bicycle Master Plan and provide  people of all ages and abilities with safe, calm and attractive residential streets for bicycle and pedestrian travel priority. A group of Ballard neighbors supporting the 6th Avenue NW Greenway project have submitted this project to the Your Voice Your Choice program for public approval.  It involves a section of 6th Ave NW that extends from NW 43rd Street to NW 50th Street, connecting to the Burke Gilman trail at NW 43rd Street. The first phase of the two part decision process involves public “scoring” which is available online (for people 13 years and older) through the YVYC website. Please consider voting for this project at this voting link. The voting link is available from May 1 through 31 for scoring. Scoring can also be done manually and for those 11 years and older, at the Ballard Branch Library, 5614 22nd Ave NW, Seattle, WA 98107 on May 20 from 5:30 pm to 7:30 pm.

Significant potential impacts to 14th and/or 15th Ave NW by Ballard Light Rail options – provide your input by April 2

2 above-street options. Green along 15th, Brown along 14th. Both station options near Market St.

East Ballard neighbor, Brian LeBlanc attended the recent West Seattle/Ballard Light Rail options open house at the Ballard High school and put together a very helpful overview of the options under consideration, plus some insight into the possible impacts. In particular, the above street options could have a significant impact on East Ballard residents and businesses along 14th and/or 15th. Note that Brian’s blog post reflects his opinion and we are sharing in order to peak your interest and encourage you to carefully research the options yourself and provide your input by April 2 via the Sound Transit online open house.

Click here to view Brian’s post
Click here to download a PDF with visualizations of the options

Help decide how to spend $2 million on park and street improvements in Seattle

Submit ideas beginning January 28 thru February 22

Seattle Department of Neighborhoods is again engaging community members to democratically decide how to spend $2 million of the City’s budget on small-scale park and street improvements. This is the third year of Your Voice, Your Choice (YVYC): Parks & Streets.

Beginning January 28 to February 22, community members can submit an idea online at seattle.gov/yvyc or in-person at any Seattle Public Library branch. Projects could include park benches, trail improvements, flashing beacons, and curb ramps to name a few. The only criteria are the ideas be physical improvements for Seattle’s parks or streets, benefit the public, and cost $90,000 or less.

One of our neighbors, Damon May, submitted a project proposal to install a pedestrian-activated light at the intersection of 14th Ave NW and NW 53rd St. This east-west crossing would complement the signal installed at 15th Ave NW and NW 53rd to accommodate safe walking and bicycling between Central Ballard and the East Ballard neighborhood, plus provide a connection to the future north-south greenway on 6th Ave NW. You can provide your input on Damon’s proposal here:
https://nsf.consider.it/2019-218?results=true

What’s your great idea to improve streets and parks in East Ballard? If you submit an idea, please share with us and we’ll help spread the word!

Learn more about what types of projects are eligible: Idea Collection Examples.You can learn more about the YVYC process and how to get involved on the city’s webpage, and for questions, email amy.nguyen@seattle.gov.


Play Streets in East Ballard

playstreets11

This past year, Seattle Department of Transportation kicked off a pilot program to introduce Plays Streets in Seattle.

A play street closes a neighborhood street to traffic so that kids (and adults) can have more space for play and physical activity. School play streets provide additional space for recess or other special activities, like a field day. Community play streets help neighbors create more space for play during the summer or after school.

The summer has been successfully kicked off and we’ve heard that a very successful community play street along NW 58th St between 11th and 14th Ave NW has started up again this week and neighbors are inviting families in the ‘hood to join them and see what it’s like. Maybe it’ll inspire you to start up your own play street!

When: Every Thursday 5:30pm-9pm
Where: NW 58th St between 11th and 14th Ave NW
What: Come meet your neighbors, let the kids play in the street. Bicycles are welcome especially since it’s along the Greenway!

According to the Play streets map, there are a few more in the neighborhood. If you’d like us to help spread the word, please contact us!