City partners with State and local governments to address 145th Street Corridor

Monday, September 15, 2014

City council, City staff, Rep Ruth Kagi,
WSDOT Secretary Lynn Peterson
Photo courtesy City of Shoreline

On Monday, August 25, Shoreline City Council and City staff toured the 145th Street corridor (State Route 523) with Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) Secretary Lynn Peterson, legislative and council representatives from the area and partner agency staff.

145th Street is a key east-west connection for the region. Thoughtful, coordinated investments in the corridor will support economic growth, enhance safety and access, and make the most of investments already being made in light rail and bus rapid transit. A well-functioning 145th Street is vital to the safe movement of people and goods throughout the region.

"Walkway not accessible for wheelchair use"
Photo courtesy City of Shoreline

However, 145th Street is in need of significant capital improvements. Characteristics of the corridor as it currently exists include significant traffic congestion; an extremely overcrowded interchange at I-5; poor accessibility for cyclists, pedestrians, and people with disabilities; limited transit service and accessibility; a collision rate nearly three times that of the similar roadways in the region; and restricted freight mobility.

The need for improvements will only increase in the future with traffic diversion resulting from tolling of the Lake Washington bridges and the operation of light rail. The purpose of the tour was to bring attention to the corridor and the critical need for capital improvements in order to meet the needs of current and future residents and corridor users.

Photo courtesy City of Shoreline

Not only does 145th Street serve as the boundary between Shoreline and Seattle, it is also a state highway from Aurora Avenue N (SR 99) to Bothell Way NE (SR 522). King County Metro is the bus service provider along the corridor and a light rail station at I-5 is planned to open for service in 2023.

Because so many jurisdictions and agencies have a stake in the successful operation of the corridor, it is imperative that Shoreline work closely with these entities and other stakeholders to ensure they understand the need for improvements and appreciate the value in working together.

Community input from residents and property and business owners along 145th Street will also be key when developing a future vision for the corridor. Shoreline wants to ensure that the investments being made in the 145th Street Light Rail Station and connecting corridor will promote long-term economic vitality.

In order to fully understand the necessary improvements, participating agencies, including WSDOT, Sound Transit, King County Metro Transit, and the Cities of Shoreline and Seattle will need to identify their key investments and priorities. It is anticipated that future improvements will include:
  • Enhanced safety and accessibility for all users
  • Improved capacity
  • Improved regional mobility and connectivity
  • Improved transit operations
  • Coordinated utilities upgrades
  • Improved I-5 interchange
An improved corridor will be safer, more efficient, carry more people, and stimulate investment and redevelopment.

To learn more about the City's plans regarding 145th Street, contact Senior Transportation Planner Alicia McIntire at 206-801-2483. 


Anonymous,  September 15, 2014 at 12:57 AM  

The City neglects to mention here the additional water main they intend to lay alongside the existing one beneath 145th to enable separation of the SPU water system in Seattle from the one they intend to acquire in Shoreline. As you can see, the right-of-way is already crowded. It looks pretty likely they will need to take property to achieve the water system separation. But that won't be the reason they give. Oh, and don't believe them when they say, "Oh, we mentioned there would be utility upgrades." An upgrade is an improvement, not acquisition-necessitated separation work.

Anonymous,  September 15, 2014 at 6:25 AM  

Wow, the City PR machine is in high gear! Where is the talk of annexing 145th and spending $500-600K per year on maintenance? Who paid for the repaving a couple of weeks ago from I-5 to 15th Ave NE, planing the road right in the area they plan on separating Shoreline from the SPU system? And where does it say that the State has agreed to a partnership? That's right, nowhere. The City of Shoreline held an Open House for the 32nd and 46th LD delegations, but a partnership would indicate an agreement. What makes Shoreline think that 145th is more important than finishing the 522 corridor, a corridor as important as Aurora? The only piece missing right now in the 522 corridor is Lake Forest Park.

Why is Shoreline trying to get the State to pay for these improvement before finding out how much Sound Transit is going to contribute for impact under the EIS for the 145th St. station?

Is the City going to propose 7-story buildings around the 145th St. Station, near the Thornton Creek Watershed (probably)?

When are the individual neighborhoods in Shoreline going to wake up and work together? Nearly every neighborhood has been screwed over by City Hall - Hillwood and Crista, Westminster and the Aurora CRA, Richmond Highlands and SCC, Parkwood and others with Aurora, North City and 15th Ave, the Fircrest Master Plan, the 185th St. Light Rail Station, the city jerks Aldercrest back and forth, Richmond Beach and Pt. Wells, but each of these individual neighborhoods don't help each other out against the one party that is causing them harm: City Hall. City Hall tosses them bread crumbs like mini-grants, uses the Council of Neighborhoods as their PR machine, and pits each neighborhood against each other so they can maintain power. When are people going to wake up?

Anonymous,  September 15, 2014 at 12:05 PM  

Divide and conquer. Textbook.

Anonymous,  September 15, 2014 at 3:36 PM  

@Anonymous 6:25am. I completely agree... when are the neighborhoods going to wake up and work together?

It's amazing what surprising tidbits you can find once you start digging through the documents on the City's website. Concerning the agressive rezoning around the 185th St Corridor, I would imagine the same proposal is coming down the pipe for the 145th St Area...

From this Thursday's Planning Commission agenda (Page 6 of 7):

"October 2 Upcoming Topics
Single-family Detached – In an effort to encourage station subarea redevelopment that reserves land near the station for future Transit-Oriented Development at higher heights and densities rather than development in the interim with townhouses and apartments, staff has proposed minimum density standards for MUR-85. Minimum density standards have also been proposed for MUR-35 and -45 to encourage transit supportive densities within a half-mile of the future station. To support this, poroposed use tables for MUR-45 and -85 do not include single-family detached as a permitted use. The City has general, cityside development code for nonconforming uses and structures in SMC 20.30.280, which currently allows legal, nonconforming uses to continue and even expand unless abandoned for more than a year."

Shold the City allow single-family to be a permitted use in MUR-85 and -45 zones? Should there be a definted date (for example, once light rail service is operational in 2023) at which point single-family uses become nonconforming? "

So basically, anyone living in a Single-family detached dwelling in the turquoise, purple, or brown zones will be considered a non-conforming structure in less than 10 years?

Anonymous,  September 16, 2014 at 2:54 PM  

In response to the City’s aggressive rezoning proposal for the 185th St Light Rail Station. we've created Sound Off Shoreline. It’s an online gathering place with social media options for people of Shoreline, WA to affect change within City Government.

Please bookmark our website at and connect with Sound Off Shoreline via the following methods:

Stay up date on issues that affect you. Email to be added to the e-mailing list.

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Anonymous,  September 26, 2014 at 7:54 PM  

@Anonymous 6:25am. I completely agree as well. I've been "sounding off" about my concerns about choosing 145th to begin with lacking a plan, just hoping that things would come together. Those being concerned are seen as troublemakers instead of, to borrow Sound Transit's slogan, "the voices of reason." Besides the street maintenance issue, which is very real, as in "who's going to pay for it" and the rest in this article are these tidbits:

* 145th is Shoreline's second busiest street, with 2/3rds of the traffic of Aurora. That's why Metro largely avoids that street (sidenote: during the public testimony, the orchestrated campaign steered decision makers away from 175th as having "too much traffic," neglecting to mention that their preferred alternative for the other, the south, station - 145th - has 1/3 more traffic as well as the horrible infrastructure...that same campaign steered the deciders away from 155th as being a "quiet neighborhood street," yet it has the same cross-section as their choice for the north station, 185th, another "quiet neighborhood street"...the point here is, these are the type of folks who are bringing us this land use);

* There is reportedly only 60 feet of right-of-way...Aurora, by comparison, had 90 - 110 feet. With only having the north half of the street to potentially deal with, how are they going to get the traffic through?

* There are multiple owners to 145th (I haven't seen where the city purchased the shares of King County, WSDOT, and Seattle, who are more than willing to off-load the maintenance costs).

* There are 5 miles between Greenwood and Lake City Way on 145th. By comparison, Aurora has 3 miles in Shoreline.

* There are only 9 years left until light rail opens in the middle of this 5-mile segment. The third mile of Aurora is about to be completed next year, about 18 years after that process began.

It looks to me like a lot of hope is riding on this. I don't see how that street can possibly be ready nor how it's not going to cost Shoreline taxpayers a bundle somehow.

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