Updated with new participants and proclamations, October 2, 2023, 4pm.
We are gearing up for this year’s Week Without Driving challenge, which will be held October 2-8, 2023. This is the third year of the #WeekWithoutDriving challenge in Washington State, and the first year that the challenge will take place in communities across the United States.
The #WeekWithoutDriving challenges elected leaders, advocates, and individuals to understand the barriers for nondrivers. Participants can get around however they want, but can’t drive themselves. This applies to all activities — not just work commutes. The challenge isn’t about not using a car, rather it’s to see what it’s like to not be the one able to drive, to better understand what it’s like to try to navigate their communities without the privilege of driving.
Nationally, more that 123 groups from 35 states and Washington D.C. are hosting the challenge in their communities. From Milan, Michigan to Tucson, Arizona, Denver, Colorado to Eureka, Oregon, we’ve already heard reports about its impact. America Walks will be holding a WeekWithoutDriving webinar Oct 5 featuring participants from across the country, including Bellevue Mayor Lynne Robinson.
This week, Bloomberg News published an op-ed featuring the impact of the #WeekWithoutDriving on elected leaders from Washington State:
“There’s just no substitute for getting out there and experiencing your transportation system for yourself,” said Claudia Balducci, a member of the county council for King County…Pierce County Councilmember Jani Hitchen had a similar reaction after she experienced the challenge in 2022. “We have not designed our infrastructure to think about all of the users of our roads,” she said…Mayor Lynne Robinson of Bellevue, Washington, who participated in the challenge last year, reports that the challenge underscored the importance of building connected multi-use paths for walking, biking and rolling that allow users to safely cross or bypass major arterials. “It’s almost more dangerous to have an incomplete network,” she said.“If we’re making it safe for our elders, for our young people, for people with disabilities to navigate their community, then we’re making it safe for everyone,” said Seattle City Councilmember Tammy Morales.
Other Washington State elected leaders who plan to participate this year include: Kitsap County Commissioner Christine Rolfes, City of Mountlake Terrace Councilmember Erin Murray, Clark County Councilmember Glen Yung, Redmond City Planning Commissioner Angie Nuevacamina, City of Mountlake Terrace Councilmember Jeff Rivers, City of Everett Mayor Cassie Franklin, Bainbridge Island City Councilmember Leslie Schneider, Snohomish County Councilmember Megan Dunn, Everett City Councilmember Paula Rhyne, Pierce County Councilmember Ryan Mello, City of Stanwood Councilmember Tansy Schroeder, Walla Walla Councilmember Tom Scribner, State Senator Jamie Pedersen, State Representative Joe Fitzgibbon, State Senator Rebecca Saldaña, King County Councilmember Girmay Zahilay, State Senator Marko Liias, State Senator Emily Randall, City of Tacoma Deputy Mayor Kristina Walker, State Representative Emily Alvarado, Pierce County Councilmember Ryan Mello and Seattle City Councilmember Andrew Lewis, City of Anacortes Councilmember Ryan Walter, Olympia School District Board of Directors, Vice President/Thurston Regional Planning Council, Chair Hilary Seidel, King County Councilmember Jeanne Kohl-Welles, City of Olympia Councilmember Dani Madrone, City of Tukwila Counclmember De’Sean Quinn, City of Kirkland Councilmember Kelli Curtis, Redmond City Council President Jessica Forsythe, Washington State Representative April Berg, City of Bothell Councilmember Amanda Dodd.
#WeekWithoutDriving wouldn’t be possible without our allies and partners here in Washington state. Amazon, a strong advocate of public transportation throughout the Puget Sound region, has supported the Week Without Driving for two years with funding that has allowed the initiative to develop and expand outside of Washington State.
Transit providers supporting the challenge include Pierce Transit, King County Metro, Intercity Transit, C-TRAN, Kitsap Transit, Island Transit, Community Transit, Everett Transit, Snoqualmie Valley Transit, Valley Transit, CTANW, Via to Transit and Hopelink Mobility. And we have partners at the Washington State Department of Transportation (Secretary Roger Millar), The Seattle Department of Transportation (Director Greg Spotts), Sound Transit (GM Julie Timm), Thurston Regional Planning Council, Cowlitz-Wahkiakum Council of Governments, Spokane Regional Health District, City of Vancouver, and the City of Tumwater and the Snohomish County Public Utility District and the WA State Department of Health.
Other Washington State Week Without Driving promoters include: 350 WA, All Aboard WA/All Aboard Northwest, Arc of Snohomish County, Arc of Washington, Cascade Bicycle Club/WA Bikes, Cascadia Consulting, Center for Independence (CFI), Climate Solutions, Commute Seattle, Downtown on the Go, Empower Movement, Feet First, ForeverGreen Trails, Futurewise, Kirkland Greenways, Leafline Coalition, Move Redmond, People First of Washington, Transit Riders Union, Transit Trekker, Transportation Choice Coalition, Seattle Neighborhood Greenways, Seattle Yimby, Sightline Institute, SnoTrac, The Urbanist and WSP.
Kitsap County Council, King County Council,Pierce County Council, Tacoma City Council, Port Orchard City Council, Bainbridge Island City Council, Everett City Council and Governor Inslee have issued proclamations in support of this year’s #WeekWithoutDriving.