The City of Seattle recognizes that construction can create challenges and now a new program, Access Seattle, is working to reduce impacts and to keep traffic moving. The Access Seattle initiative is an effort to balance unprecedented growth and development in Seattle with the need to maintain mobility. More than 100 projects were underway or started since January 2013 in Center City alone. The city is focusing on areas of the city, called construction hubs, where multiple construction projects will occur near each other. Under the new Construction Hub Coordination Program, a critical part of Access Seattle, the city is proactively coordinating construction in these areas to minimize impacts.
Seven construction hubs have been identified so far and a team has been set up to:
- Assess the schedules of all projects in construction hubs to identify conflicts, and minimize mobility and access impacts;
- Create mapping systems showing all planned and current mobility impacts from hub-area construction;
- Establish reliable lines of communication with communities affected by the construction; and
- Provide on-site enforcement to monitor and resolve conflicts.
“Our site coordinators meet with contractors before construction begins, discussing impacts and coaching on best ways to maintain mobility for the duration of a project,” said Seattle Department of Transportation’s Right of Way Manager, Brian de Place. “The idea is to get everyone talking and seeing the same big picture, to save the public and contractors from undue inconvenience and frustration.” SDOT is leading the Construction Hub Coordination Program in partnership with the Office of Economic Development. The effort is collaborative, to ensure strong support and thorough problem solving.
“The Office of Economic Development works to provide assistance and information for businesses to grow and compete in Seattle, and that sometimes includes navigating governmental services,” said James Kelly, Business Liaison with the Office of Economic Development. “Our office is pleased to partner with SDOT, helping to provide clear communication about construction project impacts and lessen the effect on local businesses.”
Key contacts for residents and businesses concerned with construction:
- For construction related concerns in the Center City area and the Alaskan Way Viaduct, North Westlake and South Lake Union hubs, contact Site Coordinator Ken Ewalt at 206.684.4995 or SDOTConstructionHub@Seattle.gov
- For construction related concerns in the West Seattle, Capitol Hill and Ballard hubs (see map), contact Site Coordinator Wayne Gallup at 206.681.6099 or SDOTConstructionHub@Seattle.gov
- For business concerns regarding construction impacts, contact Business Liaison James Kelly at 206.684.8612 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Construction Hub Coordination Program goals include helping residents and businesses know what to expect and where, while limiting and managing cumulative impacts to support neighborhood and economic vitality.
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