The Goal of Open Alleyways is to inform neighbors about the benefits of re-imagining Seattle’s forgotten side-streets and alleys as useful public space. We suggest embracing the use of these narrow rights-of-way for use as dedicated routes for pedestrians and bicycles, settings for public events, areas in which to develop unique businesses, and mixed-access arterials that can connect a neighborhood.

Seattle is on the right track. We’ve had confirmation of a Nagle/Denny closure to create a plaza after the Capitol Hill Link Light Rail Station opens in 2016, and ¬†even using it as a permanent home for the Broadway Farmers Market. Seattle has also been a leader in creation of bike trails and lanes, with 50 miles being built within the past two years. Though this is great news, we should not stop there. Capitol Hill has numerous other areas in which we could adopt these practices, and do so long before trains are running below our feet.