Small Sparks Funds still Available for Spring Clean!

Spring Clean flierIf your neighborhood would like to participate in Spring Clean, the city’s annual community clean-up event, Seattle Department of Neighborhoods has a fund to support your activity.

The Small Sparks Fund provides matching dollars for neighborhood-initiated projects that promote community engagement. Community groups can request up to $1,000 to help enhance their activities with funding for publicity, plants, or special clean-up supplies, to name a few. The deadline for applications is six weeks before your event.

For information on the application process, visit or call 206-233-0093. Interested applicants must register in the web-based application system at least two days before applying.

Spring Clean is Seattle’s premier clean-up event hosted by Seattle Public Utilities (SPU). Held every April and May through a partnership with Parks and Recreation, Seattle Department of Neighborhoods, and Department of Transportation, Spring Clean provides opportunities for residents to keep our city tidy. SPU provides bags, gloves, safety vests and more to help with the neighborhood clean-ups. For more information, contact the Spring Clean hotline at (206) 233-7187 or visit


How will you Celebrate Neighbor Appreciation Day on February 14?

Neighbor Appreciation Day is coming up on Saturday, February 14.  Need ideas to celebrate?  Here are a few!

  1. Organize a neighborhood clean up. You can contact your Neighborhood District Coordinator for supplies.
  2. Host a potluck
  3. Go for a walk with your neighbor. Feet First and Seattle Department of Transportation have walking maps.
  4. Have a book exchange or clothing exchange
  5. Organize a SNAP meeting

For Neighborhood Appreciation Day events in your neighborhood, check our calendar at:

Safe Routes to School Grant Program Accepting Applications During “International Walk to School Month”

Grants are available to help make the routes to your neighborhood school safer. Some examples of past projects funded by the Safe Routes to School Mini Grants include kick-starting a walking school bus with safety vests and flags for bus “drivers;” supporting walk to school month events with prizes and incentives for walkers; incentives for bike to school commuters, like bike locks, lights, and helmets; bicycle safety and maintenance classes to make sure kids know the rules of the road and how to keep their bikes in tip-top shape; traffic circulation plans to make sure traffic flows as safely as possible around schools.

International Walk to School Month is held in October of each year. This event which is held in more than 40 countries gives children, parents, school teachers and community leaders an opportunity to be part of a global event as they celebrate the many benefits of walking. For more information about International Walk to School month, visit

For more information and to apply for a Mini Grant, visit In addition to the application, a letter of support from the school principal must be emailed, mailed, or faxed by the application due date. For questions, contact Ashley Harris at Completed applications are due Oct. 31, 2014 by 5 p.m. and recipients will be announced by Dec. 5, 2014. Funds will be distributed in January 2015.


Use the Neighborhood Matching Fund to Support your Neighborhood Greenway Project

Seattle is building a network of neighborhood greenways. Neighborhood greenways are safer, calm residential streets for you, your family and neighbors. Neighborhood greenways do not add bike lanes, and there are minimal, if any, on-street parking impacts. They are mostly funded through the nine-year voter approved Bridging the Gap Levy. Existing greenways include: 39th Avenue NE, Wallingford, Beacon Hill, Ballard, 26th Ave SW, and Fremont Avenue N.

To add enhancements to existing or upcoming neighborhood greenways, the Neighborhood Matching Fund can be a great resource. The Neighborhood Matching Fund could be used for a variety of enhancements to green a greenway and make it even more pedestrian friendly, add art or other fun elements to a route, or host an event in the neighborhood.  To learn more about using the Neighborhood Matching Fund, there are two information sheets to help you. To learn more about pop-up greenways, click  here.  To learn how to use the Matching Fund to apply for greenway enhancements, click here.  For more information about the Neighborhood Matching Fund, visit

Mayor McGinn announces nearly $14 million in neighborhood transportation investments

Mayor Mike McGinn today announced nearly $14 million in neighborhood transportation investments throughout Seattle as part of his 2014 Proposed Budget. These investments focus on the basics, with more funding for sidewalks, road paving, design work for bridge rehabilitation, and funding for coordinated transportation planning in four key corridors.

“Seattle’s economy is doing well, and that gives us the ability to pave more streets, build more sidewalks, repair more bridges, and conduct additional coordinated transportation planning,” said McGinn. “We’re investing in better roads and sidewalks in neighborhoods across our city.”

“Neighborhoods across Seattle are always in need of, and advocating for, more transportation investments,” said Phil Shack, chair of the City Neighborhood Council. “This commitment to invest more in our neighborhoods is much needed and very welcome.”

The mayor’s 2014 Proposed Budget represents a 37 percent increase in road maintenance funding over 2010 levels. A significant investment for people who walk is also part of this budget proposal. With more funding for pedestrian improvements like sidewalks and curb ramps, there is a 79 percent increase in Pedestrian Master Plan Implementation over the 2014 Endorsed Capital Improvement Program.

“Seattle’s Pedestrian Master Plan is the City’s guide to prioritized investments for people who walk,” said Devor Barton, chair of the Seattle Pedestrian Advisory Board. “This funding increase for plan implementation will make our streets safer, our neighborhood more walkable, and, eventually, it will make our residents healthier.”

The mayor’s budget proposal includes $776,000 to initiate coordinated transportation planning in four corridors in 2014: Beacon Avenue, Lake City Way, Greenwood Avenue, and East Marginal Way. This work will utilize pedestrian, bicycle, transit, and freight planning to recommend future investments. It will include project scoping, conceptual design, cost estimating, traffic studies, and public engagement to evaluate potential capital improvements. $2,400,000 is also included to leverage state and federal grants to significantly improve the 23rd Avenue Corridor, a corridor running through the Central District and Capitol Hill. Improvements will include sidewalk reconstruction, pavement reconstruction, a neighborhood greenway, signal upgrades, and more. 

Specific maintenance and infrastructure investments include:

  • $4,000,000 during 2014 and 2015 to build new sidewalks, based on Pedestrian Master Plan criteria.
  • $3,000,000 during 2014 and 2015 to repair sidewalks and construct approximately 200 curb ramps.
  • $1,000,000 in additional funding to repair more of the City’s arterial roadways. Projects will be selected based on pavement condition, cost, use by transit, bicycles, pedestrians and freight, traffic volume, coordination opportunities, and geographic balance across the city.
  • $1,000,000 in additional funding to restore more of the city’s non-arterial streets.
  • $1,000,000 over 2014-2015 to improve the pedestrian and bicycle environments near the future Northgate Light Rail Station in Northgate.
  • $500,000 for design for rehabilitation or replacement of three or four of the City’s most structurally deficient bridges. This work will enable the Seattle Department of Transportation to develop competitive grant proposals for future funding.
  • $200,000 to develop small-scale capital improvements at street ends during 2014 and 2015. Improvements may include stairs, benches, seating, viewing platforms, plantings or landscaping, and habitat enhancements.
  • $100,000 to design and install traffic calming devices on approximately ten blocks of neighborhood streets. These improvements will help to achieve 20 miles-per-hour speed limits on residential streets near parks, schools, libraries, senior housing, neighborhood business centers, and walking routes to transit.

The $13,976,000 in neighborhood transportation investments listed above are in addition to the City’s baseline budget for similar items and are made possible through Bridging the Gap dollars, real estate excise tax revenues, and other funding sources.


23rd Avenue Joint Community Open House and Workshop on June 29

23RD OPEN HOUSEThe City of Seattle will be hosting a community open house and workshop on Saturday, June 29 at the Garfield Community Center (2323 E. Cherry Street) from 9:00am to 12:00pm. This will be a joint community engagement effort for two projects: the 23rd Avenue Corridor Improvement Project and the 23rd Avenue Action Plan.

The 23rd Avenue Corridor Improvement Project is a Seattle Department of Transportation project to improve the 23rd Avenue corridor between E John and S Rainier Streets. The project, originally began as a repaving project between E John and S Jackson Streets only, but was expanded through the award of several grants for signals, paving, transit and pedestrian improvements. SDOT met with the community in March 2013 and took input on several different design options. At the open house, SDOT will present their proposed plan for the 23rd Avenue Corridor Improvement Project. Participants will be invited to view what is being proposed, hear a brief presentation, and engage in a short instant polling survey to help redevelop the corridor into a more vibrant street.

The 23rd Avenue Action Plan (Union-Cherry-Jackson) is led by the Seattle Department of Planning and Development in close collaboration with various city and county departments including SDOT, Parks and Recreation, Office of Economic Development, Seattle Department of Neighborhoods, Office of Housing, Seattle Police Department and Seattle & King County Public Health. This project provides an opportunity for the City and the community to work together to develop a shared vision and action plan for the three Central Area community cores along 23rd Avenue at Union, Cherry and Jackson to make these great destinations unique, viable, healthy and equitable for all people who call the Central Area home.

Now it is time to continue to turn your passion into action! The 23rd Avenue Action Plan project team has developed community priorities, draft strategies and actions based on consolidated community input. You are invited to participate in the open house and workshop to (1) review and confirm the community vision (2) Discuss and prioritize the strategies being proposed in response to community vision, and (3) begin building action teams and partnerships who will work together to make it all happen.

To request interpretation, ADA accommodations, or to sign up for childcare, please contact Kerry Wade, at (206) 733-9091 or

For more information about the project, please visit the Department of Planning and Development website at:

Is your neighborhood in need of some minor enhancements? You should consider applying for the Neighborhood Park & Street Fund – Deadline is February 4!

It could be a marked crosswalk, a curb ramp, a short-stretch of sidewalk, sidewalk repair, curb bulbs, pedestrian countdown signals, a median island, or a traffic circle.  Or maybe your neighborhood park could use some playground improvements, trail upgrades, tennis or basketball court repaving, park benches or tables, or accessibility improvements? 

The Neighborhood Park & Street Fund (NPSF) awards up to $90K to fund park or street improvements, so make sure you get your application in by February 4th!

If you want to see how much the project you have in mind would cost, check out SDOT’s list of approximate project costs per project type.

For more information, please visit the NPSF website or for transportation related projects contact John Vander Sluis, SDOT NPSF project manager, at or (206) 684-4617.  For parks related projects, contact or (206) 684-7556.