As expected, former City Councilmember Peter Steinbrueck announced his mayoral campaign this morning, promising a “city for all” with empowered neighborhoods, intentional growth and effective leadership. He spoke passionately about his vision for Seattle, a young city, he said, that is full of promise. And he said his campaign has been an all-volunteer, low-budget affair, though he said he intends to start raising money.
Steinbrueck made his announcement at Pike Place Market, surrounded by his two sons and a couple dozen supporters, including several people who previously supported Mayor Mike McGinn. Steinbrueck said neighborhood plans have been “abandoned and more-or-less dismantled” over the last decade, and he would work with neighborhoods to hold the line on rapid growth. He would hire more police officers, he said, and embrace reforms to the department that protect “people of all walks.”
“I think there’s an issue of leadership effectiveness also, and I can’t say I’ve seen much of that these days. I think I can do a much better job,” he said. “I’m fit, I’m fired up, and I’m ready to serve as your next mayor.”
He has worked as a paid lobbyist for the Port of Seattle opposing a basketball arena in the Sodo neighborhood, and Steinbrueck said he thinks the arena site puts the city’s industrial area at risk. As mayor he would look to the state’s environmental process to determine whether an arena is a good idea, he said. “In time we will determine what the best location is.”
In talking about transportation, Steinbrueck specifically mentioned cars, a wink to people who feel McGinn has focused too much on transit and bikes. Steinbrueck said he would work on sensible solutions for people who travel on foot, by wheelchair, on bikes, transit, skateboards and cars.
Steinbrueck’s announcement brings the mayoral field to six with just fewer than 11 months to go until the election. To get through the primary, each candidate will have to find a sliver of loyal voters to support him or her.