Mayor urges: Vote yes on Bellevue Propositions 1 and 2 | Letter

This November, Bellevue residents have the opportunity to make Bellevue a safer, more enjoyable place for everyone to live, work, and play.

  • Thursday, October 27, 2016 7:15pm
  • Opinion

This November, Bellevue residents have the opportunity to make Bellevue a safer, more enjoyable place for everyone to live, work, and play. All of us on the City Council urge you to vote yes on Propositions 1 and 2 on the November ballot and fund critical improvements to the city’s fire safety and neighborhood infrastructure.

We all know Bellevue is growing, and our Fire Department and city planners are struggling to keep up with the results of this increased demand on our infrastructure. Currently, the city’s list of capital projects exceeds projected revenue by more than $800 million over the next 20 years.

Proposition 1, the fire facilities measure, would ensure that fire stations are able to continue to provide critical emergency and medical services at all times, including in the case of disaster situations. Currently, Bellevue’s fire infrastructure is based on a plan from the 1970s, and none of the nine existing stations meet modern seismic code.

Prop. 1 would fund seismic retrofitting and other modern upgrades for all nine fire stations; construction costs for the new downtown station, which would relieve pressure on stations in surrounding neighborhoods; and rebuilds for fire stations 4 and 6 in the Factoria and Crossroads neighborhoods.

Proposition 2 would help the Transportation Department meet the backlog of projects designed to improve neighborhood safety, connectivity, and congestion. At current funding levels, it would take over 30 years to complete only the list of identified sidewalk projects alone. Large backlogs also exist for pedestrian crossing, traffic calming, school traffic improvement, and bicycle facility projects.

Six types of projects would be available for Prop. 2: reducing neighborhood congestion; improving neighborhood safety; building new sidewalks, trails, and paths; traffic management technology; system maintenance; and new bike facilities.

Propositions 1 and 2 would cost the median Bellevue homeowner $14.67 per month and ensure that both first responders and residents are able to move safely across our city. The levies have broad bipartisan support and have been endorsed by the City Council. All of these projects are essential for Bellevue as we continue to grow and add new residents to our neighborhoods and businesses to our downtown core. Please join me in voting yes on Propositions 1 and 2.

Mayor John Stokes

City of Bellevue