Bellevue has several programs and projects to safely operate and maintain the transportation network. Safety work includes the city's Vision Zero effort, Neighborhood Traffic Safety Services, Neighborhood Sidewalk Program, Crosswalk Program, traffic calming and education. Maintenance work includes annual repaving through the Pavement Preservation Program, filling potholes and other spot repairs to streets and sidewalks, severe weather responses, mowing and vegetation management along city rights of way.
Starting in spring 2021, residents may notice a difference in the way transportation infrastructure is maintained. The reduced maintenance approach is due to budget cuts caused by the economic impact of COVID-19. Included in the cost containment is reduced maintenance to the transportation network. These cuts continued into fiscal year 2023-2024 due to other competing needs throughout the city.
Residents will likely see changes in the way the city maintains streetscapes and parks. Here are some examples of where residents may notice the impact:
- Grass, shrubs and trees along streets: The city will be mowing and trimming less along streets, islands, and guardrails, and residents will notice grass and other vegetation growing longer than normal.
- Reduced irrigation: Irrigation and maintenance to some landscaped areas along roadways will be reduced. The result will be browned-out turf areas and increased weeds, leaves and other debris.
- Sidewalk maintenance: Maintenance work to edge, trim and clean arterial street sidewalks, normally done annually, will be deferred for at least two years. Residential sidewalks, typically maintained every fifth year, also will be affected. Property owners can help by removing vegetation encroaching on adjacent sidewalks and streets.
- Other street maintenance: Other street maintenance impacts will include reductions in curb painting, sidewalk displacement repairs and temporary street pavement repairs. Pothole repairs will not be affected, and the city’s annual repaving program will see only minor impacts.
Bellevue staff ask for the public’s patience, and its assistance. If someone does see a street maintenance issue they believe impacts public safety – not just aesthetics – please report it at 425-452-7840 or email OMSupport@bellevuewa.gov.
The City of Bellevue is considering a Transportation Benefit District to restore funding to transportation infrastructure maintenance. Funds raised would also support ongoing transportation capital programs throughout the city. More information can be found on the Transportation Benefit District webpage.