At approximately 11.00am yesterday, the first trip on the First Hill Streetcar departed its Pioneer Square station at Occidental Avenue & Jackson Street with Mayor Ed Murray, SDOT Director Scott Kubly, City Councilmembers Rob Johnson and Tim Burgess, and a few other Seattle notables on board.

Some of our tweets from yesterday as events were unfolding:

But on its first day, the streetcar’s runs were not without any hiccups. One of the first trips today was delayed by a loading Metro Access van in front of the Northwest Kidney Center on Broadway. And at about 5.30pm, a crash on Jackson Street delayed the streetcar for approximately an hour while the officers from the Seattle Police Department cleared the scene.

A crash delays the First Hill Streetcar. (Photo by Scott Bonjukian)
A crash delays the First Hill Streetcar. (Photo by Scott Bonjukian)

With general purpose lanes being converted to streetcar and bus lanes in South Lake Union, and dedicated lanes coming to First Avenue for the Center City Connector that will unite the two systems, the First Hill segment having no dedicated right-of-way might make it an outlier as we expand the Seattle Streetcar system.

But to quote Mayor Ed Murray as the first car departed today, “today is a good day.”

Article Author

Ryan Packer lives in the Summit Slope neighborhood of Capitol Hill and has been writing for the The Urbanist since 2015. They report on multimodal transportation issues, #VisionZero, preservation, and local politics. They believe in using Seattle's history to help attain the vibrant, diverse city that we all wish to inhabit. Ryan's writing has appeared in Capitol Hill Seattle Blog, Bike Portland, and Seattle Bike Blog, where they also did a four-month stint as temporary editor.