A gift for the mom who has everything: free parking

State, city partner with businesses to offer free parking on Seattle’s waterfront

WSDOT Press Release – Great food, interesting shops, fun attractions and picturesque views. If those aren’t good enough reasons to visit Seattle’s waterfront on Mother’s Day, here’s one more – you can park there for free.

The Washington State Department of Transportation and the city of Seattle are teaming up with several waterfront businesses, restaurants and parking operators to offer up to four hours of free parking between 9 a.m. and 7 p.m. on Mother’s Day, May 13. The promotion is one of several steps WSDOT and the Seattle Department of Transportation are taking to offset lost on-street parking due to construction of the State Route 99 tunnel and other work along the waterfront.

“The waterfront is open for business during construction and there’s plenty of parking to be found,” said Downtown Seattle Association President and CEO Kate Joncas. “Treat your mom to a cruise on Elliott Bay, explore the Seattle Aquarium or enjoy a relaxing brunch – it’s a great time to visit.”

Here’s how visitors can take advantage of the more than 1,100 free parking spaces available on Mother’s Day:

  • Park at one of five participating parking facilities near the waterfront.
  • Dine at a participating restaurant or visit a participating business.
  • Request a validated parking ticket from your server or at a designated location by showing your receipt.
  • Show your validated parking ticket to the attendant at one of the participating parking facilities to receive up to four hours of free parking.

Participating businesses include Alaskan Sourdough Bakery, Argosy Cruises, The Crab Pot Restaurant & Bar, Elliott’s Oyster House, Fisherman’s Restaurant & Bar, Ivar’s Acres of Clams, Ivar’s Pier 54 Fish Bar, Red Robin, The Salmon Cooker and Seattle Aquarium.

Parking facilities accepting the validations include Commuter Centre Garage (809 Western Ave.), Hillclimb Garage (1422 Western Ave.), Pike Place Market Garage (1531 Western Ave.), Watermark Tower Garage (1108 Western Ave.) and the Western & Seneca parking lot (1101 Western Ave.).

For more information about the Mother’s Day parking promotion, visit www.downtownseattle.com/ThingsToDo/parkingpromo.

Future parking improvements on the waterfront

The Mother’s Day promotion is part of a larger effort to help waterfront businesses through SR 99 tunnel construction. Construction crews are currently building more than 60 temporary on-street parking spaces on Alaskan Way between Spring and Pike streets. The new spaces are scheduled to open on May 12.

“Tunnel construction has changed where people park when they visit the waterfront,” said Alaskan Way Viaduct Replacement Program Administrator Linea Laird. “We’re doing everything we can to maximize parking and encourage people to visit neighborhoods near construction.”

Since August 2011, WSDOT and SDOT have been working to identify and implement strategies to mitigate for parking losses in Pioneer Square and on the waterfront. A plan to address the impacts of construction on short-term parking in these neighborhoods will be finalized in June.

For more information on the Alaskan Way Viaduct Replacement program, visit www.alaskanwayviaduct.org.


Spring Speaker Series at Milepost 31

Milepost 31 celebrates the people and projects that shaped Pioneer Square and provides an inside look at the SR 99 Tunnel Project. Learn more about the project from experts in the field at the speaker series.


211 First Avenue South

Free admission

First Thursdays


May 3 – Tunneling in Seattle

A History of Innovation

Robert “Red” Robinson, Senior Vice President of Shannon & Wilson, Inc. – a Seattle-based geotechnical and environmental consulting firm

6 to 6:30 p.m.

Did you know there are more than 100 tunnels beneath Seattle? Join us for a virtual tour exploring the train, sewer, utility and transit tunnels built during the past century and learn how tunneling technology has advanced from hand tools to sophisticated boring machines.

June 7 – Meet the Tunnel Boring Machine

Replacement Program

Chris Bambridge, Tunnel Design Engineer for the Alaskan Way Viaduct

6 to 6:30 p.m.

What’s as long as a ferry, five stories tall and weighs 5,500 tons? The SR 99 tunnel boring machine! We’ll show you how this custom-designed machine will grind through rocks and remove more than 800,000 cubic tons of soil as it builds the SR 99 tunnel beneath downtown.


View full color flyer (PDF): MP31 Speaker Series

Promote Your Neighborhood!

The Metropolitan Improvement District (MID) invites you to help shape Pioneer Square’s marketing efforts while meeting your neighbors! Join us at this twice-yearly community event for light breakfast, lunch or appetizers, updates on this year’s summer plans and some lively discussion on Downtown Seattle’s holiday marketing campaign, neighborhood-specific summer promotions and on-going neighborhood marketing efforts!

April 17, 2012
8:00 – 9:30 a.m. (Discussion begins at 8:30)
Caffe Umbria
320 Occidental Avenue South, Seattle, WA 98104

PLEASE RSVP to Chelsea Asplund at 206-613-3247 or ChelseaA[at]DowntownSeattle.org.

For other neighborhood promotion meetings, see the Promote Your Neighborhood flyer (PDF).

Promote Your Neighborhood (PDF)

Ride Free Area Update

From King County Metro:

In March, Metro Transit invited the community and stakeholders to comment on its implementation plan to end the Ride Free Area in downtown Seattle and transition to a pay-on-entry system.  These changes are scheduled to begin Sept. 29.

To date, we have received more than 400 comments by email, regular mail, phone, or online. Comments are still coming in, and we’d like to extend the deadline to Friday, April 13 to give everyone time to send in feedback on the options being considered for the implementation plan. These options address transit operations, customer communications, and mitigation for bus riders with little or no income. An outline of the options can be found in the attached PDF labeled “brochure.”

Comments can be submitted online: http://metro.kingcounty.gov/tops/bus/ride-free-area/changes.html

By phone: 206-296-7643 (English); 206-263-9988 (Spanish); or 206-263-9674 (Vietnamese)

By email: community.relations[at]kingcounty.gov

By regular mail: King County Department of Transportation Communications, 201 S. Jackson St., KSC-TR-0824, Seattle, WA 98104