Seattle's $1.4 billion levy proposal would cost homeowners another $36 a month

Largest part of levy will go toward repaving and other improvements of Seattle streets.
The Seattle skyline

Seattle Mayor Bruce Harrell has released a draft a new eight-year, $1.4 billion transportation levy proposal intended to repair bridges, repave streets, connect neighborhoods to the light rail and build sidewalks.

According to Harrell’s office, the levy proposal would cost a median Seattle home valued at $866,000 roughly $36 per month, or about $435 per year, a $12 monthly increase from the expiring Levy to Move Seattle.

The current nine-year, $930 million Levy to Move Seattle passed in 2015 and costs the owner of a median-priced Seattle property about $24 per month. According to the city, the current transportation levy provides roughly 30% of the Seattle Department of Transportation’s budget.

“This levy proposal will deliver more funding to get us there – no matter how you get around, it will make trips safer, more reliable, and better connected so that every Seattleite is set up for success when they experience our city,” Harrell said in a news release.

The proposed levy, if approved, would see the largest portion of funding – $423 million over the lifecycle of the levy – go toward repaving and other improvements of Seattle streets. That would include paving 38% of the busiest blocks where streets are in poor condition.

Another $218 million would be dedicated to keeping Seattle bridges in reliable working condition and preparing for future bridge projects, including the Ballard Bridge, Fremont Bridge and Magnolia Bridge.

Other funding opportunities include $109 million for new sidewalks and repairs, $100 million for installing new traffic signals, and $94 million to expand Seattle’s protected bike lanes.

The proposed levy will need to make its way through the Seattle City Council before landing on the ballot for the city’s voters this fall.

Last year, Seattle voters approved a housing levy that is anticipated to collect $970 million through 2030, or $138.6 million annually. This tax levy starts at 45 cents per $1,000 of assessed value, or $383 a year for the median Seattle homeowner.