12th Avenue and E James Court in 2008. The property on the left is now an apartment building, the property on the right is now a park. (Click for enlarged view)
East James Court used to be a little cut through street with parking along both sides, remarkable only in its unremarkableness, a way for cars to get between 12th Avenue and 13th and to store their cars for a two-hour block of time. But not a place where anyone likely felt a strong desire to spend a whole lot of time.
Now East James Court is a complementary space next to the newest park in central Seattle, directly between Capitol Hill and the Central District. On April 14, the grand opening ceremony was held for this park, which includes one of the biggest pieces of public art to be added to Seattle Parks properties in many years, the “Cloud Veil”, designed by Ellen Sollod.
The grand opening ceremony. Photo credit: No Spandex Required
Visit 12th Ave Square Park to witness another example of spaces for cars becoming places for people. Grab a coffee at Cherry Street, or a bite to eat at Ba Bar, take a seat under the Cloud Veil, and marvel at the difference on 12th Avenue now compared with a few short years ago.
For the past three years, the worst intersections in Seattle for pedestrians, according to the readers of the Walking in Seattle blog, have all been close to Seattle’s downtown, along Aurora and Denny Way.
2015’s “winner”- Terry Ave and Denny Way.
We suspect our readers have a number of intersections that they would like to nominate as worst in Seattle, most of them within our central Seattle greenways boundaries. You can nominate an intersection through April 30 at Walking in Seattle and readers will decide if it is truly awful enough to be worst intersection in Seattle.
The Seattle Department of Transportation is seeking ideas on what to do with a segment of street on Capitol Hill that it has singled out as being one of several sites that it wants to transform from underutilized street to park space in 2016.
The segment of road is on Summit Avenue between Olive Way and E Denny Way. This one-way segment serves only as a cut-through for traffic coming off Denny or Summit, and creates more potential for pedestrian conflict when there are already several busy streets coming together in the area. It also contains two parking spaces and a Pronto station. The parking will go; the Pronto station is set to remain part of the newly reimagined space.
What to do with this segment of Summit Ave?
At the Capitol Hill Community Council meeting this Thursday, April 21, SDOT will be on hand to gather feedback about what could be done in the new parks space. For these projects, the changes must not be permanent as the Pavement to Parks projects are essentially pilot projects to see how well the spaces function as park space.
Join us on Thursday and take part in this exciting new program. You can also check out the first Pavement to Parks project in Seattle on First Hill at the intersection of Union, University, and Boylston.
The CHCC meeting will be held at 12th Avenue Arts at 6:30 PM.