I’m still on vacation in Denver, so we will have more coverage of this soon. But for all you who are super eager to try out Seattle’s newest and longest protected bike lanes, the city has announced that the Linden Ave project is now essentially complete.
The city will celebrate the opening July 13 at 10 a.m., so mark your calendars if you’re into that kind of thing. Also note that one section will still be closed due to a private development along the route.
More details from the SDOT Blog:
Linden Avenue North between North 128th and North 145th streets is a fabulous new version of itself – awaiting a unique artwork installation in early July to call the “Complete Street” a completed project. Part of the newly neighborhood friendly Linden Corridor is the City’s first urban cycle track – modeled after designs in Vancouver, British Columbia. The two-way cycle track on the eastern side of the street features green boxes at intersections and driveways to raise awareness of bicycle travelers.
The special green thermal-plastic pavement treatment is much longer lasting than standard road paint, making it a good safety investment.
Another safety measure along the cycle track is a special bicycle signal at North 130th Street. The bicycle signal turns green prior to the vehicle signal; this allows the cyclist to enter the intersection so that right-turning vehicles see the cyclist before making a right-hand turn (a common bicycle/vehicle risk). In addition, southbound vehicles have their own left-turn phase, during which time the bicycle signal is red.
Other new sites along the corridor include some temporary educational road signs, telling bicyclists how to use the bicycle track, among other things. The goal of the educational signs, area posters and flyers is to make the new 2-way cycle track configuration something travelers are aware of and understand. The signs look something this…One other thing to be aware of, a private development at the intersection of Linden Ave North & North 141st Street will temporarily block a portion of the cycle track until early August. That said, the project team is still planning a big Linden Complete Street Celebration July 13, 10 a.m. to noon! Look for details soon…
Had a chance to check it out with the whole family a couple times the last few weekends riding to soccer games and dance performances on the north end. Nice cycle track; sight lines are a little too constricted southbound for a couple of intersections for my taste where I had to quell our speed on the tandem this last weekend (fully opened)–fine at 15, but dangerous much faster as you just can’t see whether cars are coming from the east in several spots until you’re on top of them. Great for family rides where we’re (including my daughters 9 and 12) all on the singles. Sweet green treatments! A couple questions:
-why “cyclist education” signs but no auto driver or pedestrian ed. signs that my family and I could see? (had to avoid several ped’s this weekend who thought it was some kind of voluptuous sidewalk) My 9 year old noticed that right off.
-has anyone else had trouble with the (east) push button on the shoreline side accessing the track from the north? It doesn’t seem the button is hooked up yet (though all the loops on the seattle side seem to be working fine).
-why left turn priority on the south end(cyclists getting on the track northbound/leaving the track southbound go after left turn-ers)?
Nice, but keep your speed down or risk the right/left hooks (especially originating from autos traveling from the east)!
Well now I can be appreciative that my legs won’t take me much over 12mph these days!
Congratulations to Richard Dyksterhuis and his cadre of committed citizen activists. This and many other improvements are a testament to their perseverance and the City’s willingness to engage them in a substantive process.
Definitely congratulations to Richard Dyksterhuis, Dale Johnson, Will Murray, Herb & Lucille Getchel, Gloria Butts, Pat McCoy and other stalwarts!
To clarify, the educational campaign includes the yard signs alongside the cycle track telling bicyclists how to use the track as well as door hangers at residences and posters hung up in community gathering places telling motorists, pedestrians and bicyclists how to use and interact with the new cycle track. We’ll get the educational campaign pieces all posted to the project web site later this week.
If there is trouble with the push button on the Shoreline side, we can notify the Shoreline City staff about it. Also, the separate left-turn phase for southbound vehicles is to reduce car/bike conflicts. The collision risk is higher wherever turning movements take place.
Thanks for the added info. on outreach LeAnne. I’m glad that no one is assuming the cyclist contingent is the only group needing education!
The turn conflict issue is understood (no one wants cyclists go be going straight while cars have a left turn arrow across a cycle track), however, where I’ve seen cycle tracks elsewhere, the bikes are allowed to go BEFORE the left turning cars vs. after so I just thought the timing was interesting.
And a big thumbs up to Kevin’s idea of sharrows. If I ditch the kids and hit linden at full speed riding solo, I really get annoyed at drivers yelling at me to “get on the cycle track” (or on the bike trail, if I’m near the BGT) as I’m riding in the road (taking the lane) at about 18 or 20 mph–clearly above the design speed of the track/trail. I also agree the transitions need to be widened as Kevin points out.
I ride this cycle track as part of my daily commute. The improvements on Linden are really wonderful. I agree with Sean’s observations. I have a few to add.
It would be a good idea to add sharrows to the southbound side of Linden between 145th and 130th, as a reminder to drivers that faster cyclists may choose to ride on the street rather than the cycle track.
I hope that there are plans to widen the Interurban Trail just south of 128th Street, and also just north of 145th Street. In both cases, the trail splits in a “Y” based on the old traffic pattern of all southbound cyclists using the right side of Linden. However, each arm is too narrow to safely accommodate two-way bicycle traffic heading into/out of the cycle track.
The construction site at 141st is chaotic during work hours. It is apparent that they are making an effort to respect bicyclists’ right of way, but there is too much human and machine activity going on to control it all. Just be very careful around there until the work is done.
UPDATE: SDOT is fixing the push button on the Shoreline side in the next couple of weeks. Regarding left-turn priority, signal timing is mainly based on detection loops in the road and priority often goes to whomeever activates the detection loop first. The signal is also coordinated with the one at 130th and Aurora. As traffic is monitored, SDOT will make adjustments as necessary to maximize the best operation of the signal.
UPDATE #2: SDOT is looking to widen the east spur of the Interurban Trail south of N 128th Street, for bicyclists to connect into the new cycletrack. I’m told this should happen later this summer or early fall. Also, regarding the Shoreline side push-button, SDOT will be installing a bicycle loop on the City of Shoreline side, to detect bikes, and relocating the pedestrian push-button.
So why is there a trough instead of a barrier just south of 143rd? There aren’t a bunch of driveways and the stuff in the pavement will last longer then paint, but there isn’t any protection form drifting motorists or encroaching parkers.
I took a quick (shaky) video of the newly completed track when I rode it last weekend. Very nice facility! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jXsz97Dqvsc
Thanks for posting the video! It clearly shows that the area is zoned multifamily/apartment with lots of new infill construction. Having a good bike lane here will be a very nice amenity for the residents who want an alternative to driving.
Bike traveling in the direction that the video is shot will be sure to have to be on the lookout for left turns into the driveways and folks coming out, but the current sight lines look pretty good.
In response to “Sean Sheldrake,” you really need to check yourself. As a longtime resident of Linden Avenue North, we’ve paid a dear price for this Bike Utopia that has been put in place around town, starting with NE 125th Street’s abject waste of a four lane street being choked into two with an unused middle turn lane and very, very few bikers on it. Culminated with the street we live on, Linden Avenue.
So when a driver tells you to use the expensive bike freeway and get off the dangerously narrow, limited sight distance vehicle portion of the street, your annoyance is your own selfish ego coming into play. Guess what? We don’t care if you’re annoyed, use the damned bike lane, get off the street, and stop being a total creep about it. The sense of entitlement that bike riders have is truly disgusting and needs to be reeled in.
I’m all for progress and this Bike Utopia is here whether or not I wanted it; however, I don’t have to accept you not doing your part. Yes, there may still be some construction in the bike freeway portion of it, deal with it. STAY OFF THE STREET AND STOP BEING A JERK; AGAIN, WE DO NOT CARE IF YOU’RE ANNOYED. USE THE EXPENSIVE BIKE LANES.
I hate to point out that the person calling others a jerk is the only person who appears to be behaving like one in this comment thread…
Has the Linden project caused some traffic backups I’m not aware of? The video Leif posted above shows a pretty harmless, calm and reasonable street for everybody.
You’ve paid a dear price? Aw, how you must be suffering. A 4-lane freeway reduced to 2 lanes, awful. Why, soon you’ll probably see your neighbors being involved in fewer car crashes, less severe crashes, and able to more easily cross the street. You might even find yourself with fewer motor vehicles on your street, less congestion, and a more pleasant drive as your neighbors decide to walk or bike instead of driving to the local store. Local businesses might find their sales increase as people decide to actually stop and enjoy Linden as a destination, rather than a pipe for cars. I feel so bad for them!
The sense of entitlement that homeowners have towards public spaces (roads) is truly disgusting and needs to be reeled in.
There’s a house on that stretch of Linden?
Crashes on Linden Ave N prior to this Bike Freeway? Clearly, you’re making things up. Also, it is obvious you don’t live on this street as you are unaware of the last two and a half years this construction project has been going on, the residents of it, nor the impact this project has had on people who own and rent property here. Checking yourself, again, is best for all.
Once again, the entitlement and gang mentality that bikers have is disgusting. I’m all for you having your opportunity to ride and be happy with that decision. Ignoring your bad behavior and making excuses for it is exactly what I’m talking about here. Bottom line, use the bike lanes, don’t ride in the street.
As for Andres, your attempt at snark is as feeble as your opinions made to resemble facts.
I suppose it won’t change your opinion if I told you it is legal and proper to bike in the street. But it is.
You complained about Linden *and* 125th, which is what I was referring to. As far as property values, you now have a nice looking street and actual sidewalks. Property values will increase because of that.
I understand that you’re upset about people biking in the road when there’s a cycletrack next to it. I have no opinion about that. But complaining about projects like this and 125th when they are improvements to your street, and will only make things more livable for you and your neighbors? That’s just silly.
You misread what I said about NE 125th Street, injecting your misplaced snark into it at first as an impulsive reaction to something you didn’t agree with. This is the gang, entitled attitudes I speak of.
My point about the waste of money and resources on NE 125th is that it is a vehicle traffic bottleneck with a steep grade which I travel regularly and rarely, if ever, see bikers on. It used to be an efficient, free flowing street, now it is an inefficient waste of space for bikes and vehicles and increases travel time. It in no discernible way increases or increased property value; my neighbors and I feel the same way and want the street returned to its previous configuration.
Again, you’re presenting your opinions based on propaganda and keywords such as “improvements” and “livable” as facts. Truly silly stuff.
And my point, as I’ll repeat again – the city has improved your neighborhood. A street that was once terrible for biking and walking on or across is now better (125th). Another street that lacked decent walking facilities has been improved. That makes your neighborhood more appealing. People who want transportation options (as opposed to being required to drive) are more likely to consider your neighborhood. People who still want to drive are not being driven away. How many of your neighbors have said, “125th was my reason for moving away”?
This isn’t us-versus-them. This isn’t about a “biking gang”. I speak as someone who can afford to choose their home in Seattle based upon walkability and bikability. This is a very clear improvement to your neighborhood.
And my point, which is lost on you, is that the traffic bottleneck is not an improvement for the reasons I’ve stated. You keep injecting opinion and conjecture and trying to present them as facts. The only implicature of “us vs them” is you, again, because you disagree with my experience and observations as a resident.
Plus, you’re going off on a tangent about NE 125th Street as a means to divert from my original, still relevant, purpose for posting: use the bike lanes on Linden Avenue North. That’s why they were installed; stay off the vehicle portions of the street. Thank you.
1) *You* are the one who brought 125th into this discussion, not me.
2) You’re speaking as if traffic patterns are static. They’re not, they will change over time (a wider road would have meant more traffic; a thinner road means less traffic as people adapt).
3) Yes, I disagree with your experience and observations as a resident. I will instead continue to trust the huge piles of data and evidence-based studies from cities and universities all over the world (including Seattle) showing how road diets improve traffic flow, livability, and safety. I will also continue to trust *my* experience as a user of roads (including as a driver) that have undergone road diets in Seattle.
And with that, I’m done.
1. Once again, you’re using a statement of comparison to sway the conversation about the Linden Avenue North bike lane usage to suit your own feeble attempt at proving you’re right without facts. Thankfully, you’re done with this nonsense, or so you say.
2. People must adapt to a traffic bottleneck it isn’t like you can add the lanes back or travel in the virtually unused, obscenely long, continuous turn lane. It still doesn’t change the wasteful, ineffective spending that didn’t need to be done and was a detriment to those who live in the area. Static indeed.
3. If you’re talking about “road diets,” again, stay off vehicle lanes on Linden Avenue North and use the bike lanes graciously provided for you. The vehicle lanes are anorexic and dangerously waif.
Hopefully, you are done. Clearly, you can’t stand to have someone disagree with your entrenched point of view so you present yourself as an expert using talking points, keywords, and information that isn’t based on fact as such.
Tom, no. Not when there are expensive bike lanes made especially for you. Not when you’re riding in the street with no room to pass you. Not when you’re being an obstruction to the free flow of traffic. Frankly, its baffling one wouldn’t use bike lanes that are made especially for you. Changing the subject slightly to ignore the context of Linden Avenue North between 125th and 145th simply to shore up your weak argument is specious at best.
Well, your anger and opinions don’t change the facts. It is legal and proper. I think we have reached an impasse.
Geronimo, To your comment about the section at 143rd, unlike the other areas, this area has the cycle track and roadway draining toward the trough. The trough allows us to keep water and our drainage structures out of the cycle track. Again, thanks all. It’s been one year of construction – starting in June of 2012 – and we know it’s tough to be patient during the work.
It isn’t anger. The impasse is an unwillingness to be aware of your surroundings and the entitled attitude I spoke of earlier. While I’m not absolutely sure about this but there aren’t the bike markings on the vehicle portion of this “complete street.” I would think education is required on all parts but it would seem to me that it is similar to a Transit Only, HOV, or other restricted lane with regard to bikes and vehicles.
Also, it is clear you don’t live on Linden Avenue North and are passionate about your decision to bike around town. It does not, however, change the facts of my first post which is to implore, albeit WITH CAPS, bikers to use the bike lanes and not obstruct vehicle traffic which is, I believe, the sole purpose for their installation.
Your car is an intrusion. If you have a problem with it, go back to the 20th century.
You live in the 21st century. Vehicles are here to stay, outnumber bikes, and your attitude is rather idiotic. The intrusion is your troll that failed.
Alright, I think everything to be said has been said. Let’s just leave this thread where it is. Thanks, everyone.
Cars (surely a bike is a “vehicle”) will only be around until global warming sends us all back to the 18th century.