No number of exclamation marks could accurately express the excitement of this news. The Burke-Gilman Trail will reopen tomorrow at noon after being closed for nearly eight months.
Reconstruction of the vital link went significantly over-budget, and completion was delayed by nearly two months.
The closure was particularly hard for people who depend on the trail to get around because there were no viable detour options, and the state refused to properly accommodate the displaced bicycle riders on 522, the only continuous parallel roadway. Thousands of people on bikes used this stretch of trail every day before the closure. The only options during the closure were to take to the highway (not appealing to most) or to ride a hilly five-mile signed detour.
The redevelopment project improved the safety of the trail by widening it to a 12-foot trail with soft surface shoulders, enhancing traffic controls and intersection and crossing treatments, and installing lighting and other trail amenities. Other upgrades include a new stormwater system, retaining walls, slope stabilization, replacement of the Lyon Creek Bridge, and installation of native vegetation.
Now the main question is: Who wants to bike to Red Hook Brewery with me this weekend?