My experience with Metro has been that from just about everywhere within about a 10 mile radius of the downtown core it is faster to bike to your destination then depend on the bus. There are a handful of exceptions (for example the 71-73X from the University to Downtown...assuming you can get on one (a whole other can of worms)). The dedicated bus lanes have helped, but I regret it every time I take the bus instead of the bike between the ferry and my office...
I commute from Beacon Hill to (lower) Queen Anne everyday, and it takes, on average, 50 minutes (about a 5 mile drive). Things would be a lot easier on people who are at or near that 1/3-of-income-on-rent threshold if the transit system could actually move people rapidly from places like Lake Forest Park or Burien. I dream of a day when we reduce car lines and give them entirely to buses.
I used to catch the 520 from 130th & Lake City and get off at 6th & Union in under a half hour but that was five or six years ago on an express bus that only made one stop after mine before getting on I-5 (and not at rush hour). Fifteen minutes was maybe possible if you drove.
I live a few blocks SE of the starting point. All I can say is, Welcome to District 5!
BTW this can't be possible for I am paying car tab taxes, increased sales and property taxes to fund a great transportation system.

NOW do you know why it's hard to get yes votes to raise taxes way way up here?
It doesn't get better, just more expensive.
Heh. That's how long my bus commute just from West Seattle is.
Well I'm sure she fully regrets that throwaway line now. What was the point again?

Oh right, congestion charges. The issue here is traffic. If the buses weren't held up by all the SOVs trying to get to downtown every day then places like Shoreline would be a reasonable place for downtown workers to live.
But but but...The Stranger has promised us over the past fucking DECADE that all of this development would lead to some magical trickle down of affordable housing for people who don't work at Amazon. Maybe your publication lied to you?
You'll do much better on the 522. City limits to 6th and Pine, often in under 20 minutes. But do it quick before they take it away and force you on a 2 or 3 seat ride. In the name of efficiency. Or something.

When's the last time Lake City got some fancy transit upgrade? All have seen is downgrades for the last 10 years. Denser than Ballard, but Ballard potentially gets 3 trains and 3 rapid-rides. Lake City, with people so poor they really really need transit? All they get is a sharp, jagged shaft.
I'll just point out that per the EIS, Lynnwood Link will get you shoreline to capitol hill in 15 minutes when it opens. And shoreline's city council, in the face of an angry tide of red faced NIMBY protest, has upzoned a pretty large swath of the city for multifamily housing.
Anyone who quotes the 30% cost for housing number is an outright idiot

or they are intentionally lying to your face.

Seriously, just spit on anyone who is either that disrespectful or that incompetent.
My plan was to build a single long LINK line along the old Interurban route...from Everett to Seattle to Tacoma.

Just make it at grade along Aurora.

No muss.

No fuss.
@3 Correction: the route was ST 522, not 520.
Is ansel wasting more Slog space again?
Ansel's a hottie. There I said it.
The Stranger has promised us over the past fucking DECADE that all of this development would lead to some magical trickle down of affordable housing for people who don't work at Amazon. Maybe your publication lied to you?

This nonsense again. Is it your position that adding less housing in the last 20 years would have made Seattle more affordable now? San Francisco waves hello.

Lots and lots of restrictive, exclusionary zoning + booming, fast growing population/economy means prices are going up pretty much regardless. But they'd have gone up a lot faster if we'd restricted the housing supply even more than we have. To state the blindingly obvious, amazon workers came here for the job, not the condo. If the condos they live in weren't built, they'd be outbidding incumbent residents in less fancy buildings.
@8 I agree that Lake City gets screwed every time.
Upper Lake City to downtown: anywhere from 40 minutes to an hour and a half. And you never know which it will be. Lake City to Capitol Hill: damned near impossible by any route.
As someone who lives in Kenmore, (just north of Lake Forest Park) I catch a 7:20 express into downtown. SR-522 (aka Lake City Way) is horribly congested with drivers who don't want to pay the tolls on 405 or 520. On the bus it takes me about an hour to get downtown. If my housemate drives it can take an hour and a half or more. Since Metro did away with the 306, I have a mile hike to the bus, which adds another 20-30 minutes to my commute. So much for 15 - 30 minutes to downtown.
This property manager is way off base, but let's also get real about taking the bus in Seattle. It pretty much takes almost 30 minutes to get anywhere on the bus. At least with a smart phone you can keep yourself occupied while you're waiting.

I used to live near Louisa Boren park on 15th and Garfield in Capitol Hill. To take the 10 bus from there to Westlake would take at least 22 minutes and probably longer. To the Stranger it would be 15 minutes.

It takes 30 minutes to get downtown from Jefferson Park in Beacon Hill or 38 minutes to get to the Stranger in Capitol Hill via the 60 bus (this may improve a little bit once the light rail goes in and even if it doesn't, the frequency of service to Capitol Hill will certainly improve).

It takes 35 minutes to take the bus from Ballard Avenue (e.g., Tractor Tavern) to Westlake Center.

So 45 minutes from Shoreline to downtown Seattle doesn't seem that bad to me, given how much further away that it is.

This is the new normal. HALA isn't going to change that. People with less money are either going to share a one bedroom apartment in Capitol Hill or Queen Anne with 3 other people, get really lucky and find an under-market deal, or move further away from the center.
A question for the "build moar" crowd.

We have lets say the maximum built of 120 floors per building, and we covered SLU with towers.

Would rents come down?

I suspect strongly they would not. Those new towers would not be interested in $800 a month.

Neither would the remaining buildings near by.

Unless you can quote a target number of units to build downtown at which point rents do start to lower, please stop blithering your mindless econ 101 tropes and trickle-down supply-side nonsense.

The "build everything" love to throw names around like NIMBY, but when asked "ok, how many units do we need" the only answer seems to be "MOAR." It never actually seems to lead to an option of them being affordable again.
I've lived in Shoreline for the past 10 years (after many years renting all over Capitol Hill and owning a house in the CD. Shoreline, White Center, Burien, Renton or even Tacoma are the future. Rather than lamenting what people are missing on Capitol Hill, people need to recognize that it's over (if not over, than transformed). Even if you have cheap rent, can you afford the restaurants, stores and bars? We've seen this happen in a million places. Everyone in NYC had to move out to Brooklyn and eventually all the young, creative people built a scene so compelling, people in Manhattan started to feel like they were living in an outer borough. These outlying areas offer cheaper housing, more economic and racial diversity and a clean slate for the next generation to build something great. 20 years ago people talked about Ballard like it was in Canada. It may seem like forever but it’s not.

My advice to anyone in their late teens/20s... Gather up a group of friends; rent a group house where the rent is cheap so you can devote your time towards doing what you love. Build something that authentically reflects your aesthetic and culture. If you do that, the people will come. And more than likely, the old haunts will slowly become a punchline. Just ask Belltown…

Old Man Walking...
I suspect strongly they would not. Those new towers would not be interested in $800 a month.

Neither would the remaining buildings near by.

I have no idea if the rent would come down or not, but I'm quite confident at a minimum the rent would increase at a slower rate. This is exactly what happens, in Seattle and other cities (even San Francisco, 2003-2008, when demand met or exceeded supply and rents were more or less stable) when supply is allowed to meet demand. The new construction would not be cheap, of course, but it would take the pressure off older housing stock. The notion that nearby property value goes up *because of* new construction is a myth; it's more of a spurious correlation (new construction happens and rents go up because of a common cause, a housing shortage--they don't cause each other.)

Hypothetical: imagine we start restricting the allowed supply of new cars to a fraction of the demand for them. Do you really think that wouldn't drive up the cost of used cars, as some would-be new car buyers are forced into the used market? Why not?

I really can't take seriously this BS about how nothing matters unless rents come down. Do you really not see a difference between rents going up slowly and rents going up as fast as the last couple years? I do. Most people who are being priced out of their homes do to.
We need compromise within the state legislature. They don't want rent controls in their districts, fine. So be it. But at least let King County (excluding Bellevue, Kirkland, Medina, Yarrow Point, and Mercer Island because, well, good luck there) or the Seattle metro area allow it for itself.

Oh and concerning commuting from Shoreline, since it is so incredibly costly to build light rail all over the damn place, why not just follow in the footsteps of cities like Bogotá, Colombia? The mayor there fought and succeeded in his efforts to designate bus only lanes for the full extent of each route, and that's what Seattle needs to do. Buses fight with traffic all the time in this city when they could reach further much more quickly if they had their own lanes.
@6 Hey, middleperson, don't be angry at drivers when we have no convenient and reliable bus alternatives. That's kind of the point of this investigation and article. You're blaming the wrong people. Our traffic woes are not the fault of people who need to get to work. Our troubles are the fault of our elected officials who do next to nothing about traffic except cut bus routes and raise fares.

The city considers "affordable units" $1,008 for a one-bedroom? That's unfortunate.
i live in the celeste with my husband & two grammar school aged kids & they raised our rent by $700. $700! that's not an exaggeration. they are jackasses.
Either your math is off or your times are off—8:36 to 9:14 is 38 minutes, not 45. However, regardless of that, your point stands, it's not as convenient (or as cheap, or as easy) for people to just move out to Shoreline.
Of course, the big joke is that Shoreline or Lake Forest Park are any less expensive than Capital Hill. If you want to save money on housing move to Iowa. Seriously. Otherwise, if you want to live anywhere in the greater Seattle metro area be prepared to pay and pay and pay until it hurts . . . nay, be prepared to pay and pay and pay until you're bleeding from every pore. You wanted to live here and sought us out like a heat seeking missile. so suck it up and stop whining.
Speaking of math...

$1000/mo is 30% of income for a household earning $40k/yr. 70% of all Seattle households earn more than that.

For 30% of income to cover rent for 85% of Seattle households, the rent would have to be $500. And then there's that 7% of Seattle residents who earn less than $10k/yr; for them, rent would need to be under $250 to qualify as "affordable" under the standard definition.

$1000/mo is affordable for 70% of the city. To make rent affordable for the poorest 30%, the rent distribution would need to match the income distribution at the low end. I don't think that's possible without a massive public housing program; rent stabilization won't be anywhere near enough to make up for income dispaity at the bottom.

Data source:…
45 minutes is below the national average for commute time via public transportation, which in 2009 was 47.7 minutes.

"But I guarandamtee you that if the unit sits vacant for long, the landlord will start lowering rent"

Not necessarily.…
"And she is correct that nobody is entitled to live in Seattle."

Is anybody "entitled" to live anywhere, though? Is the landlord really entitled to unrestrained rent-seeking? Why is one entitlement considered sacred and the other merits a big shrug?
Great point. That is if you were proving why costs went up in Seattle. Commutes stink, and you pay to live closer, and so will everyone else.

This is nothing new! I didn't have the right to demand a cheaper place that I liked on Capitol Hill when I moved further out. This argument that people have the right to live and pay what they want is completely lost on me. I lived in Shoreline and in Kirkland and spent less money than I did living in a crappy place by the UW campus.
@29 No one wants to live in Iowa.
The Mayor, Councilmember Mike O'Brien, and The Stranger say anyone who works in Seattle should be able to afford to live here. They also say property taxes are regressive and hurt middle class and poor people, then encourage us to vote for every single one of them. The Stranger, Mike, and the former Mayor also said that tearing down the Viaduct and replacing it with nothing in order to make the waterfront nicer for rich people would have no effect on West Seattle. Obviously far too many of us have no inner bullshit detector.
Not to get too technical, geographically speaking, but Shoreline begins on the north side of 145th. You caught the bus on the south side, which is Seattle. Also, the senior housing you mentioned is also in Seattle, barely, but still Seattle. So to really take a bus from Shoreline into Seattle, say from the 175th and Aurora P&R, you can add at least 10 minutes to your commute.
@35: People have a right to live wherever they own land or work out a deal of some kind to live on land owned by another person. They do not have a right to declare where they will be living, regardless of who owns the land or where it is.

The right of the landlord to do as she wants with the property she owns is guaranteed by the rights derived from our constitution, it is not an "entitlement." However, there is no legal guarantee that states a person can choose to live anywhere they want regardless of who owns the land. Pretty basic stuff, really.
Can we talk about how long it takes to commute from Boulevard Park, South Park, White Center, Burien and Renton? Every time there is a transit improvement happens it goes to North Seattle or east of the freeway. It takes me 2 hours to get to Capitol Hill for work, and 30 min to drive, an hour to ride my bike, but I get off work late and if I ride my bike home it will be as a woman alone on streets with no lights and i will get cat called and shit thrown at me (this has happened a lot).
@15 - That's all I came here to say too. Hubba.
This just cracks me up to no end. It has been this way for YEARS: a cross town Metro bus ride is almost as long as a Sound Transit train or express bus trip from an outlying area with cheaper rents. Either way, you are sitting on public transportation. At least the train has bathrooms!

Just like to point people to her profile on website, that second to last sentence sums it up:

Julie Medina, Residential Asset Manager
Julie oversees the multi-family property management of Stratford's West Sound / Kitsap County market portfolio. Her responsibilities include the oversight of leasing, operations, property maintenance and tenant relations. Julie ensures all residential properties are operated efficiently and leased to maximize investor value and resident satisfaction. Juilie started with Stratford in 2002 and is currently our longest tenured employee, having delivered powerful results in every role she has held.

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