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2nd Ave bike counter unveiling kicks off Bike Month + Remembering Lance David

IMG_0224There’s now a humble counter ticking away everyone who bikes up or down 2nd Ave through the heart of downtown Seattle.

Commute Seattle’s Jessica Szelag unveiled the display this morning, which is a gift to the city on a beautiful first weekday morning commute of Bike Month.

Even with construction at 2nd and Pike blocking access to the 2nd Ave bike lane (the construction company’s own Bike Month gift to commuters), 212 people had biked past the counter before 8 a.m. Monday when the cover came off.


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With the Viaduct closed, Bike Month is starting with even more reason to bike: Unpredictable traffic and buses. And since the Viaduct won’t reopen until the tunnel boring machine passes completely under the elevated highway and WSDOT deems it “safe,” well, it may be best to go ahead and get used to getting around without it.

The start of Bike Month is a sobering time, though, because it is also the anniversary of Lance David’s death. David, a husband and father of twins, collided with a truck at E Marginal Way and S Hanford Street May 1, 2013.

Friends visited the ghost bike memorial May 1 to freshen up its flowers and pay their respects. There are still serious road safety issues on E Marginal Way that the many West Seattle and South King County commuters have to navigate each day.


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14 responses to “2nd Ave bike counter unveiling kicks off Bike Month + Remembering Lance David”

  1. Dana

    Those valet ramps they made across the 2nd ave bike lane are horrible. They curb protruded out into the lane so they then had to re-stripe the lane so you didn’t run into it.

    Also, the fact the construction company can shut down the bike lane just throwing all bikes into traffic is ridiculous.

    1. Conrad

      I’m surprised anyone even uses it at all. More often than not it is blocked or closed by construction. The resultant sudden merge makes it more unsafe than just taking the lane in the first place. If a driver asks why you are not in the ‘bike lane’, just tell them it is in fact a construction staging area and not really a bike lane at all.

      1. Curi

        The cycle track is not nearly as bad as you make it out to be. I don’t know why some folks are so quick to dismiss it. There were a few weeks recently where it was closed to varying degrees while they were installing the raised garage entrances and planter boxes, but that is behind us now. All that currently remains closed is the construction site at 2nd Ave & Pike, and that’s typically only closed in the morning.

  2. onshay

    I was there only a few minutes after Mr. David and that truck collided. It has forever changed the way I ride and, even though I never knew him, I think about him frequently and tear up every time. Thoughts go to his family and friends at this terrible anniversary.

  3. Van Wolf

    I go down 2nd Ave nearly every day, if it wasn’t for the bikeway there, I doubt I’d even attempt to make the ride. I’m not a bold rider, and while the construction was scary there for a while, there were other riders around me, which made me feel safer. In fact, it gave me a chance to talk to other riders about what made us feel safe.
    I ride down and take that turn at E Marginal, so I’m confronted with 2 ghost bikes every time I ride to work. There’s almost always a huge line of semi-trucks leading up to it, and the turn is one of the most nerve-wracking moments of my ride. The 1st ave S portion gets my heart racing right quick, and not in a positive way.
    I guess my point is that infrastructure is great, but without COMPLETE infrastructure we are fooling ourselves. 2nd ave went from a nice bikeway, to a SAFE bikeway, and yes, that took time and patience. I just don’t want us to forget that there’s a cost to that time, measured, sadly, in human lives.
    Thank you for reposting Mr. David’s story, each time I see his ghost bike I think of the cost of our patience, and complacency when we believe just paint is enough.

  4. SBC

    E Marginal Way and S Hanford Street is a terrible intersection. So many bicyclists blow the red light and/or shoot diagonally from the sidewalk on the west to the bike lane on the east…which just makes us all look bad. Plenty of drivers too get tired of the long red light and blow the intersection.
    Just today the viadoom-caused backup caused some moron to decide the turn-only lane on Marginal would be a good passing lane to get around the car back-up and shot between a couple bikes in the bike lane while he was at it.

    https://youtu.be/6IwyRzrDwWw

    1. Que

      This person is actually doing this daily – driving up the turn only lane and cutting into the bike lane when the light changes to cut off all the motor traffic in the through lane. When I see them I take the lane at the front of the turn-only lane and keep the car behind all the bike traffic going straight at the light, not letting them merge over until the bikes are clear. They really need to start enforcing traffic violations on this road, as it is it’s pretty road-warrior out there.

  5. Boxtwo

    The 2nd ave bike lane is STILL NOT OPEN – construction workers had the usual stretch between pike and pine closed and blocked during commuting hours this morning.

    1. Rob A.

      Went past at 2 pm and it was still closed, had to cut across a couple lanes while trying to see around the stopped left-turning traffic…horrible. I usually take 3rd or 1st and it looks like I learned my lesson about attempting to use 2nd

  6. […] 2nd Ave bike counter was unveiled yesterday, but it does not appear the daily count data is available online yet. We will update when/if that […]

  7. SGG

    Thank you for posting the memorial for Lance David. I rode past about 10 minutes after this happened, and will never forget this as long as I live. It is an unsafe road that could be redesigned with all users in mind, but the political will is not there between the city and the port. Tom, how about some follow-up with the city as to where they are in terms of redesigning East Marginal to make a seamless, separated connection to West Seattle? Thanks!

  8. Michael

    I took a pretty good spill in the curb of one of the raised walkways.
    The bike path paint led directly to the curb and before I knew it I was on the ground.
    Thankfully I was not going to fast so I got by with a few minor bumps and bruises.
    I doubt this will be the first time these will cause problems.

    1. onine

      You should definitely seek legal representation about this, the city shouldn’t be allowed to continue getting away with such shoddy design and lawsuits are the only thing they listen to.

      1. poncho

        uh, the alternative is no obstructions for cars and getting hit by a car going fast

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