SDOT’s been busy out there as we hit the peak of the 2011 paving season (the greatest season of all). Here are a few updates from Ballard. I also noticed spray paint markings on N 65th St near Green Lake getting ready for changes there, as well as markings on Latona and Thackary in Wallingford.
There are also a couple planned projects in Georgetown (Ellis Ave and Albro), Columbian Way between Columbia City and Beacon Hill., and Dexter. Oh, and, of course, NE 125th has been completed (more on that soon).
New bike lanes on 20th Ave NW in Ballard
No more bike-in-a-house sharrows on the Missing Link
Remember those sort of confusing bike-in-a-house sharrows on NW 45th St at the southern start of the Missing Link? Gone. SDOT has removed the outdated pavement markings and installed new, more familiar sharrows.
Perhaps even more importantly, the new markings are placed in the center of the lane, encouraging people now to ride too close to the extremely dangerous train tracks just next to the road.
It is common to see people, especially people who have probably not traveled this stretch of road before, try to ride between the tracks. This is extremely dangerous, especially for those without fat tires on their bikes. Hopefully the new markings will encourage safer riding while the city continues the legal battle to complete this vital link in the trail.
I have noticed a significant lack in southeast and southwest Seattle projects so far this year. Budget cuts have hit the number of bike lane miles that will be installed this year (25.5 instead of the planned 30, according to SDOT’s Doug Cox at last month’s Bicycle Advisory Board meeting). The budget for a Southeast Seattle neighborhood greenway was also cut in half (from $300k to $150k).
I hope that the trend changes and we get more projects south of the Ship Canal. And it’s time to start talking seriously about installing at least one separated bike lane of some kind downtown. Everybody’s doing it, and with great results. A safe downtown is way past due.
Notice any projects we have yet to cover on this site? Note them in the comments.