A look at the updated draft of the Bike Master Plan

See full map below

See full map below

We will dig deeper into this update in future posts (and, if you’re reading this before 6 pm Thursday, you can attend an open house about the new draft at City Hall).

The city will also be hosting a series of open houses over the next week or so.

Below is a look at the updated documents released today:

Seattle BMP Master Map

SBMP Complete 6 5 2013 2 Pm

You can find more documents on the SDOT website.

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31 Responses to A look at the updated draft of the Bike Master Plan

  1. Chris Mealy says:

    Well, there’s a lot of attention to intersections, but the treatments all stink. Why aren’t proper Dutch intersections even an option? It’s like they’re trying to be third-class.

  2. no traffic lights says:

    This plan relies far too heavily on greenways for connections within Ballard and to Phinney/Greenlake/Fremont Hill/Wallingford/Roosevelt. We need real people-moving infrastructure to account for the explosive growth in Ballard over the next few years. Market St will be a parking lot if people don’t have an alternative to their motor vehicles.

  3. eric.br says:

    I always wonder if there will ever be a discussion about the logic of both 2nd and 4th avenues downtown. I travel on both frequently, and think both are near death-traps.

    Would a combined, separated, bicycle infrastructure down the middle of 3rd ever be an option? This failure of having a safe North/South route through downtown hangs like an albatross over Seattle’s figurative head.

    • Al Dimond says:

      3rd is too important for the transit network — the bus system needs all four lanes of the current street and there isn’t much extra room after that.

      Any of Western, 1st, 2nd, 4th, and 5th (not to mention Alaskan Way) could be good routes if some effort was put into them. 2nd and 4th are kind of lousy routes because of the lack of effort put into them.

      • Tom Fucoloro says:

        Alaskan Way will certainly have something when it’s rebuilt. 3rd is the flattest street, but the transit issues (especially once the tunnel goes light rail only) would make it very difficult to install a bike facility there.

        My preferred path forward: Let’s do 2nd Ave first, since we need to fix the existing dangerous lane anyway and there’s plenty of room. This is also less hilly than 4th/5th.

        Then, we should make sure a bike facility is planned in conjunction with the center city connector streetcar, especially if they choose the 4th/5th couplet option. We need “lower” and “upper” (in reference to elevation, not north-south) downtown options. After all, nobody is going to bike downhill on a 2nd Ave cycle track, then climb up Cherry to City Hall. That’s hella steep.

      • biliruben says:

        5th may be too close to I-5. It’s a traffic jam of people waiting to get to their on-ramps in the afternoon. I give it a wide berth. Maybe 4th.

      • eric.br says:

        Ugh. Back where we started. 2nd and 4th.

        (Me ringing my bell like an idiot trying to not to get plastered by left-turners and door-openers and any other taxi who just needs a place to pull over “for a second”. :)

      • Tom Fucoloro says:

        I’m open to see what the center city mobility study finds. For example, does it make more sense to have two one-way cycle tracks (one on 4th, one on 5th) or one two-way cycle track (I would guess likely 4th for the reasons you describe) or two way cycle tracks on both (my favorite option, of course…)

      • Tom Fucoloro says:

        Another thing to consider is that, if the center city streetcar does go on 4th and 5th, then we should advocate for bike facilities on both. No more streetcars without bike facilities.

      • Tom Fucoloro says:

        eric: These would be protected bike lanes, so people wouldn’t be able to pull over into them and intersections would be much more clearly and safely designed, turns more regulated, etc. So not where we started.

      • eric.br says:

        You’re right Tom. Protected bike lanes would be considerable different and safer than the current death-canal situation. I think it’s just the years of trauma built up in my head of riding down 2nd, which was speaking there…

      • Tom Fucoloro says:

        I know what you mean.

      • mike archambault says:

        5th Ave would actually be great for a cycle track south of the library (which is exactly how it shows up in this draft)! There is extra road space and traffic dies down considerably since it’s past all the freeway entrances. Connecting the library to Intl District and its transit also sounds pretty great.

      • Gary says:

        “ringing my bell like an idiot”…

        Time to get a real air horn, bells are for pedestrians on the trail. Air horns are for cars, trucks and cabs..

        http://www.amazon.com/Delta-Airzound-Bike-Horn/dp/B000ACAMJC

    • Gary says:

      I’d rather have a lane in each direction on say 1st ave. It’s already slow as molassas during rush hour. Cutting out a traffic lane isn’t likely to make it worse for cars than it is now.

      • JohnS says:

        Yeah, Gary, and that’s tied up with the same streetcar conversations. Personally I’d rather see a streetcar on 4th/5th than 1st, but if they go with 1st you’re going to be hard-pressed to also make room for bikes. A 4th/5th couplet for the streetcar lends itself to protected bike lanes on both streets, IMO – although if you do that then Tom’s right, you should also do something on either 1st or 2nd to cover the ‘lower elevation’ north-south connections.

      • Tom Fucoloro says:

        1st would be awesome. So many more destinations than 2nd. But I think doing 2nd makes sense no matter what since A) There’s easily room and B) We need to fix the existing bike lane, anyway, so that’s two birds with one stone.

        If they put a streetcar on 1st, I’ll definitely fight for a cycle track there. But you’re right, it might be hard. Definitely more opportunities on 4th/5th.

      • Gary says:

        “street car on 1st” is tied to my favorite.. “no room on the waterfront for the old waterfront streetcar”

        So booting the street car from 1st would be top of my agenda because then it wouldn’t “compete” in the Fed’s eyes with the riders on the waterfront when in all actuallity, they are completely different groups of people seperated by a huge sand bluff.

      • Tom Fucoloro says:

        Also, the ped environment on 2nd it horrendous. That might actually be strongest argument for choosing 2nd…

      • Morgan Wick says:

        As a transit guy, I’d much rather see a streetcar on 1st that can eventually be extended to Belltown and Seattle Center than one on 4th/5th that only serves to connect two unrelated lines that happened to come before any others for various reasons. We do too much piecemeal transit planning in this city, and the streetcar network is the most glaring example of this. If the 1st Ave S bridge could be fixed and the existing bike facilities in Belltown connected to anything north of Denny, 1st would be a good through bike corridor (though obviously not as good as the Elliott Bay Trail north of Atlantic) that would also serve destinations like Pike Place Market and Seattle Art Museum.

      • Tom Fucoloro says:

        Clearly, the streetcar should go where it will be the most successful (as much as I’d like to think bikeway alignment is a higher priority to streetcar success, haha). A 4th/5th alignment would help access to less walkable areas of downtown, but 1st at least seems to have a higher concentration of people. I’m sure people more versed in transit planning than I will run the numbers and see which would be more successful/fill the biggest need.

    • A says:

      Personally I like 2nd.. for those days you need someplace to rage and destroy. It’s not a practical bike route for regular folks though.

  4. mike archambault says:

    I’m pretty impressed by the expansiveness of the routes in this version and it’s a considerable improvement over the previous version. Excellent job, advocates –and SDOT for listening.

    I do think SDOT left a gap, though, in South Park by not marking Dallas Ave as a potential route. It has all the makings of a greenway: quiet residential road with lots of beautiful trees that connects the Duwamish Waterway Park to downtown South Park and the new South Park bridge (which will eventually also have a nice park/plaza as part of its rebuild). I took this route everyday when I worked in South Park and it’s safer, calmer, and more direct than taking Cloverdale, which is on the master plan but is a much busier arterial. Dallas Ave as an alternative is a no-brainer in my opinion.

    The specific route I’m talking about is Dallas Ave S to 10th Ave S to S Kenyon St, which also goes on to connect to the Duwamish Bikeway (1st Ave bridge, West Seattle, etc.) Check it out!

  5. Mark J says:

    I ride on 2nd for about a mile to my work, which is on 2nd. I see a lot of cyclists on my commute, and when I stare out the window at work at the cyclists rolling by. Somedays, I count 2-3 cyclists per cluster of cars! This leads me to believe that 2nd has high ridership levels. It is easy to see why so many people choose 2nd, despite the dangers. It is a logical and quick route to zip south through downtown, as it is flat and then downhill. However, I concur with all the 2nd Avenue bike lane sentiments that are expressed frequently on this blog. It is a dangerous route with motorists speeding towards the freeway entrances, and failing to use turn signals, while crossing and/or blocking the bike lane to turn left (presumably because they nearly miss their turns, because they are speeding). I am interested to see what is implemented (if anything) at intersections in addition to a cycle track to relieve the infamous left hooks that are all so prevalent on our dear 2nd Avenue.

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