The 106th Avenue Northeast Curbside Management Pilot is part of a collaborative effort to study how the curbside area is currently used and how it might be used better in the future. More study is needed because rapid growth is anticipated for downtown Bellevue and competition for limited curbside space is expected to increase.
Uses for that space come from ride-hailing services (for example, Uber, Lyft and taxis), private buses and shuttles, King County Metro and Sound Transit buses, delivery trucks, “micromobility” services (such as shared bikes and scooters), curbside pick-ups and drop-offs, pedestrians and sidewalk dining. Cities are beginning to test solutions on their streets to better meet these new demands for curbside space.
About the pilot
Traditionally relegated to vehicle parking or vehicle traffic, the curb has become increasingly important as cities grapple with how to manage the new mobility services that have emerged.
Bellevue is conducting the pilot as part of the Smart Cities Collaborative, a group of cities doing similar curbside studies in 2020. Bellevue, Boston and Minneapolis were selected as pilot cities and are receiving technical support from Transportation for America, a national organization that supports a safe, affordable and convenient transportation system.
Bellevue Transportation also has received local support for the pilot project from King County Metro, Bellevue Downtown Association, Bellevue Chamber of Commerce and others.
The pilot will study curbside management on 106th Avenue NE, between Northeast 4th and 8th streets. The study will take a two-pronged approach, data collection and curbside changes as it attempts to answer key questions.
- Data collection: Bellevue will use multiple data collection techniques to evaluate existing curbside trends and see where curbside “friction” occurs, such as vehicles parking illegally in travel lanes.
- Curbside changes: After collecting initial data, staff plan to make changes to curbside designations to better match existing conditions and encourage good street behavior. Changes will likely be minor, such as sign modifications. There’s no plan for extensive construction work as part of the pilot.
- Key questions to answer: What are some new best practices for curb management? How to ensure the safety and efficiency of Bellevue’s increasingly constrained street network? What’s the best technology for measuring curbside uses? How can Bellevue encourage commerce and mobility while ensuring livability?
The 106th Avenue NE Curbside Pilot is scheduled to begin in May and run for several weeks.
City resources for the Curbside Management Pilot will include the creation of temporary, low-cost signs, and staff time devoted to monitoring the pilot.