Move Seattle pushes for $900 million to fund city transportation projects

Updated Mar 25, 2015

3-23-MoveSeattleMove Seattle, a 10-year transportation plan encompassing transit, walking, biking, and freight, will require a $900 million levy paid through property taxes, according Seattle Mayor Ed Murray’s “vision” proposal.

“Move Seattle will help us meet current demands while working toward future needs as Seattle continues to grow,” the Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) said. “Move Seattle envisions a transportation system that contributes to a safe, interconnected, vibrant, affordable, and innovative city.”

Seattle voters will have the chance to vote on the new levy in November if the Seattle City Council moves it forward in August to be put on the ballot.

The program’s draft proposal, released by Murray and SDOT director Scott Kubly, is titled “Transportation Levy to Move Seattle” and would replace at the end of this year the existing transportation levy titled “Bridging the Gap”. Since 2006, “Bridging the Gap” has provided nearly 25 percent of SDOT’s funding.

Under the new levy, property taxes would increase by $145 a year for a median Seattle household valued at $450,000, going from $130 per year under the current “Bridging the Gap” levy to $275 per year.

The “Transportation Levy to Move Seattle” would aim to provide basic maintenance, such as filling potholes and paving streets, as well as funding multi-modal “transportation system improvements” to integrate safety and mobility for all modes of transportation and to invest in the transportation system “to keep pace with out growing city,” SDOT reported.

Through April, SDOT will collect public feedback on the proposal, then Murray will submit it to the Seattle City Council in May. The council would then need to submit it to King County in early August in order for it to make on the November ballot.

More information on the program is available here, with a draft of the proposal available here.