520 Bridge Trail will finally open December 20

Photo from WSDOT

Well, WSDOT has said all along that the 520 Bridge Trail will open in Fall 2017, and it technically will.

The region’s most significant new biking and walking connection in decades will open December 20 at 3 p.m., 17 hours and 28 minutes before the winter solstice.

As we’re written before, this bridge connection is going to revolutionize biking in the region, especially between Seattle, Bellevue, Kirkland and Redmond. For example, bike trips from UW to downtown Kirkland will be cut in half. The implications of such a change are immense. So many more trips will become accessible by a relatively easy bike ride. I hope Eastside cities are ready to take action to help make their streets safer to help encourage these new bike trips.

More details on the opening, from WSDOT:

Mark your calendars for 3 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 20. That’s when WSDOT is opening the SR 520 Trail all the way across Lake Washington! The morning of Dec. 20, crews will put the finishing touches on the trail. Then at 3 that afternoon, the trail opens to the public, connecting cyclists and pedestrians across SR 520 for the first time. So whether you’re planning a Wednesday evening stroll or a Thursday morning bike commute, grab a rain jacket and get ready to cross the lake!

Check out this drone video for a sneak peek of the newest section of the SR 520 Trail, connecting the Eastside and Montlake.

Interested in learning more about the trail? Read our latest WSDOT blog post about the construction of the path and how it fits in with regional trails! No matter how you plan to use the trail, we hope you enjoy this new community resource and we’ll see you out on the trail on Dec. 20!

This entry was posted in news and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

17 Responses to 520 Bridge Trail will finally open December 20

  1. asdf2 says:

    Currently bus commute across the 520 bridge, and am definitely looking forward to giving this a try.

  2. Hooray! I’ve been waiting for this trail since first showing up to a “Bike 520” interest group meeting at Microsoft in 1992.

    But why no exit/connection to the existing (and well-used) pedestrian trail on Foster Island? Are folks supposed to rappel down, or dive into the water off shore, or just look wistfully over the edge at the waterfront park they can’t access from above, or wistfully up at the great new paved trail they can’t access from below ? Did WSDOT and the Arboretum have some kind of active interest in keeping these two populations of trail users distinct and segregated?

    • William says:

      I think bridge crossers are meant to cross the bridge and access the wetland trail from the two entry points just like everyone else. Not quite clear why anyone would reasonably expect a major state highway to have a direct connection to the middle of nature trail.

    • 🚇🚲🚠💵 says:

      I agree. It’s too bad the 2 new trails aren’t going to be connected. It would shorten the path between the east side to downtown Seattle and be quite a bit more pleasant than connections goToo bad there’s no connection to the foster island trail. It’s gravel, but A just to the south is the brand new arboretum bike trail. Connecting the trails could shorten the path between the east side to downtown Seattle and be quite a bit more pleasant than going through the mountlake interchange and all the mess of construction planned there in the near future.

  3. JB says:

    Good news! But really, this one bridge connection is going to revolutionize biking in the region? Sounds like another example of this blog popping champagne corks while still miles away from the finish line, not unlike with Move Seattle and the Missing Link. Why don’t we get real about these things and then maybe we won’t get glad-handed around quite so frequently by transportation agencies and cynical and indifferent politicians like Murray and probably Durkan as well.

    • Tom P. says:

      It won’t solve everything no, but what would? This will definitely revolutionize biking in the region because it will make major connections for thousands of people. This is a big win worth celebrating! We are fortunate to have a nice new bike path on such a large bridge meant for highway traffic. Many other regions would never do something like this.
      The bike network is far from complete, but the negativity over an exciting improvement is unhelpful. A bike lane across the longest floating bridge in the world is quite amazing!!!

      • JB says:

        Yawn. Let me know when there is a real bike lane on the Ballard bridge. Until then, stop acting like a propaganda mouthpiece for the feckless politicians and transportation agencies.

    • John L says:

      It will be pretty major for people wanting to commute to Bellevue from Seattle and also increasing the bike ridership on the Eastside – (except for redmond, eastside bike facilities are pretty bad). The additional bikers should put pressure on the cities to improve their facilities (I bike commute to Bellevue from Issaquah). I know a number of people from work that live close to 520 and would commute by bike if they felt safe. In addition, it will provide a nearly continuous bike path from Issaquah (actually even North Bend) to Seattle with out having to take the longer Burke-Gillman route — unfortunately, there is no path from Issaquah to the I90 bridge trail yet.

    • Jay says:

      It will revolutionize my commute – it currently takes me 75 minutes to bike from Redmond to Capital Hill via I-90, 60 to bus, 45 mins to drive – the new trail is going to cut a huge chunk of time off biking, it will probably be faster than busing, and probably faster than driving a lot of the time (+ no tolls!). I know I’m not alone in commuting to/from the east side, if more people realize that biking is a faster, it could lead to a big surge in riders.

      • Azimuth says:

        Whatever you do, DON’T mention “no tolls” again or the internet trolls will come crawling out.

  4. Lisa says:

    I hope Google maps updates their maps info for bikes and peds. 😀

  5. Chris Coon says:

    That’s going to be one windy ride.

  6. Bob Hall says:

    > will open December 20 at 3 p.m., nine hours before the winter solstice.

    The solstice is Dec 21 @ 16:28 UTC, so the Bridge Trail will open 17 hours and 28 minutes before the solstice.

    Technically correct is the best kind of correct! :)

  7. Bike & Bus says:

    It will still be possible to take free buses across SR-520. “Metro will continue to provide the dead-head service for bikes due to high demand on this corridor.” Regular service buses require fare payment.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *