Vol. 1, No. 2  October 2010
In this issue:
Tools: new Seattle Walking Maps, "Walking in Seattle" blog 
Options: Seattle staircases, more buses on SR 520, bike boxes and more 
Inspiration and Incentives: more prizes for Walk Bike Ride Challenge, incentives for kids and more

NewNameforNletterNew Name and Look for Newsletter

Last month, you may have noticed that the Way to Go newsletter has a new look and a new name, The Walk Bike Rider.   This monthly resource is now more easily identified as part of the City's broader efforts to make walking, biking and riding the easiest ways to get around Seattle.


Who is a Walk Bike Rider?  You are, and so is anyone else who walks, bikes or rides transit to get around Seattle.


ThemeMonthFocus of the Month: Walking

Walking: good for you and your community  

Current research -- and common sense -- tells us that walking is good for your health. It helps control weight, keep your heart healthy, prevent diabetes, control high blood pressure and reduce the risk of certain cancers.  Research shows that walking can also help prevent depression, reduce stress and improve sleep. For older people, walking helps keep the mind sharp, improves balance and reduces the risk of falling.  Finally, walking is vital to our communities, providing natural opportunities to interact with friends and neighbors.


Help keep our sidewalks walkable 

Nearly everyone, regardless of age or ability, is a potential sidewalk user. Did you know that Seattle property owners have the responsibility to keep the "Walkable Zone" on the sidewalk near their property clear? Think of the Walkable Zone as a box six feet wide by eight feet tall that extends all the way down the sidewalk.  Property owners are responsible to keep the Walkable Zone free of obstacles such as parked cars, recycling bins, plants, ice and leaf litter, and to fix cracks in sidewalks along their property.  By keeping this area clear and maintained, we can all help to make Seattle America's most walkable city.


ToolsTools to Help you Walk, Bike and Ride

Seattle's Walking Maps now available

Walking map cover for Oct 2010These maps help you choose a walking route that best suits your interests and fitness level.  All of the routes on the maps are labeled with the approximate time in minutes it takes to walk each segment and steep grades are highlighted.  Three maps are available: north, central and south Seattle.  To view the maps online or to order a hard copy, click here. 


Walk blog

The "Walking in Seattle" blog is a handy resource that provides walking routes, tools, news and more.


OptionsOptions to get Around

More sidewalks in the city

Fifty-four blocks of new sidewalks have been built in Seattle since 2007. To see before and after photos of new sidewalks on 3rd Avenue West, Airport Way and Sandpoint Way, click here.


Seattle: city of staircases 

Seattle has about 500 public staircases to provide connections for pedestrians on our hills. Some of them, such as the Galer Street staircase system in Queen Anne, open an entire corridor to pedestrian travel.  Over the last few years SDOT has repaired and improved many aging staircases, which helped inspire two people to climb all of them.  Learn about their experience in this video from King5 TV. If you would like to try out Seattle's stairways, SDOT's new walking maps are a great resource.


Seattle's first bike box

Bike boxes are a kind of queue jump for bicyclists, giving them priority and increasing their safety at stop lights. To learn more, click here.  


Bus service on SR 520 increases 20%

In October, bus service on the Evergreen Point Floating Bridge (SR 520) increased by about 130 trips across the lake each day.  More increases are on the way in February 2011.  For more details click here.

Incentives Inspiration and Incentives to Walk, Bike and Ride

In her blog post "Stumbling Toward Simplicity" Beth Amsbary shares thoughtful reflections on the decision to sell her car.  That was three years ago, and she and her husband have been "blissfully satisfied."


Wheel Options: two trips could win you big bucks

Commute without driving alone just two times from October 17-30 and you could win fantastic prizes including $2,500.  Most walk, bike and ride programs operated by the City of Seattle focus on converting driving trips to non-driving trips, but in this program (operated by WSRO,) a trip is eligible even if you have been taking it by foot, bike or bus for months or even years.


Walk Bike Ride (WBR) Challenge: Aug./Sept. winners and more prizes for the current round

Congratulations to Marisa B. of Uptown for winning the $100 REI gift certificate and to Marc E. of Ballard for winning the $100 Zipcar gift certificate for the August/September round of the WBR Challenge.

Sign up for our October/November round; cut two car trips per week and you could win prizes from  Woodland Park Zoo, Pacific Science Center, Seattle Center Monorail, Curious Kidstuff, Zipcar or REI.


October is Walk to School Month

Let's get more exercise in our kids' lives, cleaner air and less car exhaust at our schools. Walking to school can even qualify you to join the Walk Bike Ride Challenge, which has great family-friendly prizes this round. For ideas and more information on Walk to School Month click here.  

Reading could win a kid a bike 

Kids who read three books between October 16 and December 16 can enter to win one of four bikes from the Fremont Library, Doric Lodge #92 and Wright Brothers Cycle Works. For more information click here or call 206-684-4084.

We Would Like to Hear from You

We welcome your feedback on the newsletter.  Please let us know if there's an issue you would like us to cover or if you have a story to share.  Email us at waytogo@seattle.gov.
Dave Allen
Way to Go, Seattle! Team
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