The City of Bellevue is planning safety changes to the design of 116th Ave NE, including new bike lanes to help link the 520 Trail to the NE 12th Street crossing of I-405 into central Bellevue.
You can throw in your support and thoughts on the design at an open house 5–6:30 p.m. December 11 at Bellevue City Hall, Room 1E-112.
As we reported previously, this is a smart project that would provide a low-cost and high-impact bike connection while also making the street safer for all users.
Today, there are two lanes northbound and one lane southbound despite the fact that traffic is essentially the same in each direction. There is no significant southbound traffic issue today. Having too many lanes makes the street more dangerous for everyone and encourages speeding. Planners describe the benefits for all users this way:
Adding bike lanes in the corridor produces several benefits including creating designated space for improved cyclist safety, but it also creates benefits for pedestrians and motorists. Pedestrians will find crossing 116th Ave NE safer and more convenient over this nearly ¾-mile corridor, as the proposal would reduce the threat to pedestrians that can occur with crossing multiple through lanes. Motorists turning in and out of driveways will find it more convenient and safer to cross a single through lane.
This is a great project, so be sure to let them know you support it. You might also suggest that the bike lanes extend all the way to each end of the project area instead of stopping short.
If you can’t make the meeting, you can send your comments to Mike Ingram, Senior Planner, 425-452-4166 or Mingram@bellevuewa.gov and Kurt Latt, Senior Transportation Engineer, 425-452-6020 or Klatt@bellevuewa.gov.
Bellevue budget includes $1 million for Eastside Rail Corridor trail
The city of Bellevue’s budget approved Monday includes $1 million to buy or least parts of the Eastside Rail Corridor from King County to start expanding the Cross Kirkland Corridor trail into Bellevue.
There is still a lot of work and funding left to go before the trail will be full steam ahead through Bellevue, but this is a key step in that direction.
Someday the trail could connect from the Sammamish River Trail (and, therefore, the Burke-Gilman Trail) to Renton through the heart of the Eastside. Snohomish County has also started planning work to extend a trail along the corridor north to the City of Snohomish.
Once the bulk of the trail has been completed — and if it is done well — the Eastside Trail could rival the Burke-Gilman as the region’s best urban trail. It could connect all Lake Washington’s crossings and pass through or near very large population and employment centers.
Simply put, this trail is a game changer. Once it is completed, the region will never be the same again.
$7 million for Newport Way sidewalks
Bellevue’s budget also includes $7 million to build missing sidewalks on Newport Way in Eastgate. This project had very strong community support and connects several schools and community destinations.
It’s crazy that this road was constructed without sidewalks to begin with, so it’s great that Bellevue is investing to fix it.
As the before and after images below show, Bellevue’s 2009 Pedestrian and Bicycle Transportation Plan also imagines bike lanes on the street some day: