The Ballard Missing Link of the Burke-Gilman Trail is headed back into litigation.
But despite the pending legal action, the city is still working through the community design process that was was part of the February compromise agreement between SDOT, trail supporters and a group of longtime trail opponents.
The city is hosting three drop-in community design workshops starting this week and culminating in an open house next month. The image above lists the times and dates for each meeting, including a map of the segments under discussion. You can drop in at any point during the workshop, according to a Cascade Bicycle Club email.
“Cascade is working with a diverse set of neighborhood, maritime and industrial stakeholders on the Missing Link Design Advisory Committee (DAC) to ensure that freight and industrial needs work together with a safe and connected trail,” Cascade wrote.
The DAC is tasked with working through all the nitty-gritty details with stakeholders, including how to make sure driveway crossings safe for everyone while also maintaining access to businesses. SDOT and Mayor Ed Murray successfully convened such a group to create the Westlake Bikeway.
Once again, Cascade will intervene on behalf of the city to help with legal work defending the Missing Link plan, though they have gone with a different legal team this time (Matthew Cohen and Rachel H Cox of Stoel Rives).
It should be harder to successfully stop or delay the project now that the city has completed a massive $2.5 million Environmental Impact Statement that studied the trail alignment options, traffic and the surrounding area at intense detail (the study spent about $340 studying each foot of the proposed trail and, including appendices, clocks in at one page for every 4.7 feet of trail). But after decades of public debate and legal action, an idiom about counting chickens comes to mind. Continue reading