The Seattle Department of Transportation in conjunction with King County Metro Transit will install a safety curb on Fauntleroy Way Southwest just west of California Avenue Southwest. The work will begin Thursday, Feb. 28, and is expected to take about two days to complete. In addition to improving safety, this work is a part of the city goal to improve Seattle’s walk, bike and bus transportation alternatives.
The yellow raised concrete curb will be installed between the opposing east and westbound lanes of Fauntleroy Way Southwest, adjacent to the westbound Metro bus stop, and will be approximately 40 feet long. The new curb will provide an additional indication to drivers that there is only one westbound lane on Fauntleroy Way Southwest, west of California Avenue Southwest.
In 2012, as part of the improvements made for Rapid Ride bus service, a number of bus bulbs were installed in West Seattle for the C Line route. With a bulb, the bus simply stops in the travel lane instead of pulling in and out of traffic. This makes the bus service faster. However, at this particular location some drivers are crossing the center line to pass the bus, which has them driving in the oncoming eastbound left turn lane. In particular, drivers traveling southbound on California turning westbound onto Fauntleroy may not be able to see around buses serving the westbound bus stop, and may unexpectedly encounter oncoming eastbound vehicles. The raised curb is intended to deter such potential conflicts.
In addition to making the bus service faster, bus bulbs provide more space for passenger amenities – like shelters, benches, and real-time bus arrival signs – and the added waiting space helps keep sidewalks clear for pedestrians. However, bus bulbs can very briefly delay other traffic behind a loading bus. Motorists are reminded that buses typically spend 20 seconds or less serving each stop, and they are encouraged to build this slight additional travel time into their schedules in the interest of safety.