A recently-opened section of trail near the University Bridge demonstrates what the whole trail could someday be like
The Burke-Gilman Trail moves as many people through the University of Washington campus per hour during rush hour as a lane of freeway at peak performance. And it does so without emitting pollution and with remarkably few injuries.
Aside from being a beloved space, the Burke-Gilman Trail is a vital transportation corridor for the entire region. But even before the opening of the UW light rail station by Husky Stadium (2016) and the 520 Bridge walking and biking trail (20??), the trail is feeling the stress of congestion that far exceeds what planners had imagined when it was built decades ago.
But the UW has a plan to address these issues, and they are looking for $12 million in Federal TIGER money to finalize funding they need to completely rebuild the trail across their campus before the light rail station opens in 2016.
But they need your help. Endorse the project online today. TIGER money is rarely used for trail projects, but this one has huge regional transportation value and the upcoming opening of the light rail station adds urgency to the project. Continue reading
Under construction at NW 58th and 15th Ave NW. Image courtesy of Bob Hall
After many delays to projects across the city, Seattle is set to get its first real miles of neighborhood greenways this year.
Delayed last year, the city is now constructing a modified version of the NW 58th Street neighborhood greenway in Ballard, which will connect all the way from the Burke-Gilman Trail on the western edge of the neighborhood to 4th ave NW at the base of the climb to Phinney Ridge.
The biggest elements of the project include crossing improvements at 24th, 15th and 8th Avenues, a bunch of ADA improvements and 460 sidewalk improvements.
While we here on Seattle Bike Blog focus mostly on the biking elements of neighborhood greenways, community groups discussing the projects are finding a big demand for improvements to the walking environment, especially for people with mobility issues. Neighborhood greenways should be places for all people, as well as safe and convenient transportation corridors. Continue reading
There will be a memorial walk in honor of Surinderpaul Basra and in support of her friends and family.
Basra, an employee at Essential Baking Company, was struck and killed one week ago at First Ave S and S Findlay Street.
Details on the walk from Seattle Neighborhood Greenways:
A family and community were torn apart by a horrific collision on Tuesday, May 14 as Surinderpaul Basra crossed at the intersection of First Avenue South and South Findlay Street right after she left after work at Essential Bakery. It’s the sort of tragedy we hear about all too often.
Please join us Tuesday, May 21st at 5:30 p.m. in front of Essential Bakery, 5601 1st Avenue South in Georgetown. We will walk where Surinderpaul Basra walked to pay our respects to her family and friends, and we will walk to send the message that we want safer streets for everyone in Seattle. These tragedies don’t need to keep happening. Continue reading
As many of you know, Seattle Bike Blog is a part-time labor of love for me. Since January 2011, I have split my time and resources between the bike blog and Central District News.
The sites are very different, and I love them both. But Seattle Bike Blog, now just a month and half away from its third birthday, has grown dramatically. It’s time for me to make the jump from part-time to full-time, so I am leaving Central District News next month in order to focus my attention here.
This is a big step for me and blog, and it couldn’t have gotten this far without the support, news tips and participation of dedicated readers like you. Thanks to the hard work and dedication of so many people organizing efforts to improve and increase cycling or starting bike-centric businesses, my list of potential stories has grown so large I wouldn’t be able to keep up even if I could write day and night without sleep. That’s a great problem to have, and a clear sign that Seattle is beyond ready for a full-time independent news website about biking.
The change means that starting in late June or early July, you can expect more news about cycling in and around Seattle. It also means more depth to reporting, more coverage from the field and a faster turn-around on breaking news and news tips.
It also means a renewed effort to grow revenue through advertising and reader subscriptions. Stay tuned for some exciting news about our subscription program (teaser: It involves beer).
I am a little bit nervous and a lotta bit excited to take this leap. And with more and more people and families across the city discovering the joy and convenience of getting around on two wheels, I look forward to telling their stories and keeping them informed about Seattle’s still-young cycling revolution.
A column of bike cops at the 2013 MLK Day march
There was a time not long ago when one of the most prominent images of urban cycling in Seattle was one of social rebellion. Once much larger than today, Critical Mass drew cheers and scorn alike. Ultra-low-budget bike repair co-ops taught people how to wrench their rusty found road bikes back into working order, and a person simply taking their space on the roads seemed a bit out-of-place.
Clearly, much of this is still true today. Taking the lane on some busy streets still often feels like a tiny revolution and bike co-ops are still teaching bike repair skills (though many more bike shops now operate in more corners of the city). But something big has changed: The Man has taken up cycling, too.
While the numbers at Seattle’s monthly Critical Mass rides have dwindled in recent years, Danny Westneat at the Seattle Times wrote a column recently noting that many of the same people who might attack Mayor McGinn for his unapologetically pro-bike stance would now be praising his handling of the May Day protestors relying almost entirely on bike cops: Continue reading
The Alki Beach Creeps are planning “the largest costumed bike parade in West Seattle” Sunday during the Alki Summer Streets event.
The Alki Beach Creeps have joined forces with the SDOT Summer Streets to bring you and your family the largest costumed bike parade in West Seattle’s 111 year history!
Bikers, plan to meet at 12:45pm on 63rd and Alki Ave in front of Alki Arts. At 1:00pm we’ll head North Alki Ave to the Don Armeni Boat Ramp, turn around and end our parade in front of El Chupacabra where we will be greeted by the soapy stylings of the one and only, Bubbleman!!
After the parade, performing right next door on the rooftop of the Alki Homefront, the Beach Creeps are proud to present an after-party of epic proportions featuring some of West Seattle’s finest Musicians!!!
DJ Zach Galafinotkiss
The Dolly Rottens!
So come one, come all, friends and families, and join us on Alki Car-Free Day for a day of bikes, bands, and bubbles!
Details on Alki Summer Streets, the first Summer Streets event of the year: Continue reading
A light drizzle kept Bike to Work Day numbers a little lower compared to recent years, but that didn’t stop scores of people from donning a rain jacket and pedaling to the jobs Friday.
After a ride from the KEXP studios to City Hall, Mayor Mike McGinn made the case that the city has gotten a lot more bike-friendly under his watch.
He also took full ownership of the label Mayor McSchwinn, which his opponents have often used to attack him.
“I say, let ‘em,” the Mayor told the crowd. McGinn is in a tight race for reelection, and is certainly hoping for big turnout from people motivated to make the city safer for cycling.
In the morning, he tweeted a campaign image featuring a person on a bike and the word: Forward. Continue reading
An excellent visual from a recent study by Kay Teschke of the University of British Columbia
Study after study in recent years has shown exactly what might be common sense to the average person: Bike lanes protected from heavy traffic are safer. Not only that, but more people choose to get around by bike once a protected bike lane is installed.
The reason really is not complicated. There is something inherently human that tells us riding a bike in the same lane as fast-moving cars and trucks is dangerous. Biking with traffic can be learned, and it can be done with reasonable safety. But only a small percentage of people will ever want to try it, let alone make it a daily habit. Most people see someone biking down Rainier Avenue and think, “That person is crazy.”
But beyond the many people who choose not to try it, biking in heavy traffic is not an option for children or people with mobility issues that prevent them from being able to cycle quickly. If no other argument in favor of safe bike lanes convinces you, the need to make our streets safe for people of all ages and abilities should.
We know this very clearly in Seattle, where decades-old and well-established “vehicular cycling” education programs and cycling clubs were not enough on their own to get everyday cycling levels much higher than a couple percentage points. But they have been extremely successful at embedding safe cycling practices into Seattle’s cycling culture. They are also a huge reason why Seattle driving culture is so much more patient and friendly to people on bikes than most other US cities. Continue reading
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The crosswalk before removal. Image via King 5
One morning, they were just there: Crosswalks and a short bike lane in a Tacoma business district to help people get across a dangerous street.
Business owners loved it.
But the city recently spent $1,000 to grind away the illegal crosswalk paint, leaving one business owner to ask King 5, “How much is paint versus having this grinding machine…?”
Tacoma’s response was decidedly less polite than Seattle’s response to a recent guerrilla-installed protected bike lane on Cherry Street. But the message to both cities is clear: If your citizens feel they must resort to breaking the law in order to make your streets safe, you’re doing something wrong.
Watch the report: Continue reading
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Tagged king 5, tacoma