People who attended an October open house overwhelmingly responded that safety for people biking and walking should be the top concern for planners of the Westlake bikeway project, a city report shows.
The project has drawn the ire of some people and maritime businesses afraid of losing parking in the giant city-owned parking lot running from Lake Union Park to the Fremont Bridge. But the promise of a truly safe way to bike through the corridor and to Westlake businesses and homes has garnered big support.
But more importantly, the open house feedback shows that almost everyone, whether they are concerned about parking or not, is concerned about the safety of people biking and walking in the area.
The city is conducting more studies and outreach, which is good since there are a lot of people who are confused about what a “cycle track” is. The organized crew of opponents to the cycle track say they want a “slow” bike route through the area, but seem to be confused into thinking that a cycle track is some kind of high speed bike lane. Hopefully more outreach can break through some of the knee-jerk fears that have been stoked about the plan. After all, we all want a safe space for people to bike through the area, and this project is the chance to make that happen.
Stay tuned in early 2014 for more. From the project team:
Our design team is completing studies of existing conditions that began this fall, including traffic and parking studies. The information gathered will be available in early 2014 and will be posted to the project website and shared with our email list.
To continue learning more about the uses of the Westlake Avenue North roadway and parking areas, we will be visiting with local businesses and residences in January. Firsthand information about access, loading and unloading areas, delivery truck sizes and more will help inform our design work moving forward.
Below is the report from the open house:
Here are the presentation slides from the open house: