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520 Trail opens today + Where to go for the opening celebration

Photo from WSDOT.

Today’s the day! Starting at 3 p.m., you will finally be able to bike across the 520 Bridge whenever you want.

To celebrate, Cascade Bicycle Club is hosting free group rides from both the Seattle and Bellevue sides of the lake. Go see for yourself what it’s like to bike from UW to downtown Kirkland or Bellevue in just 45 minutes.

Details from Cascade:

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The new 14 foot bike and pedestrian trail on the SR 520 bridge will be complete and ready for your ride just days from now. The wide, relatively flat path unlocks myriad recreation and transportation possibilities for people on bikes.

Celebrate the opening of the bridge trail on Wednesday, December 20 with Cascade Free Group Rides from either Seattle or Bellevue.

For some, the trail means a new loop option for weekend Lake Washington rides, others will experience their regular commute as possible – or just a lot shorter – by bike for the first time.

For the region, the bridge trail represents a step toward our future: transportation infrastructure that’s accessible to all, and the ability to get more places by bike. Send a quick thank you to WSDOT Secretary Roger Millar to remind WSDOT that the state highway system matters to people on bikes.

And let’s not forget, the bridge trail will be a fun ride! With views of wetlands and lake, Mount Rainier on a sunny day, and the Seattle skyline (remember how amazing the view was when Cascade’s Emerald Bike Ride took over the SR 520 bridge in 2016 and again this May?)

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10 responses to “520 Trail opens today + Where to go for the opening celebration”

  1. Laila B

    Will it be safe for pedestrians to walk across?

    1. asdf2

      Better than I-90 because the trail is wider, and there are pullouts every mile or so to let bikes pass.

  2. Ben P

    Wish I could have been there for the opening. I’ll need to ride it next time I’m in Seattle

  3. DJ

    Hoping for half decent weather on Jan 2 so I ride to/from work. I tried the ride-bus-ride method but it took too long and the way home only worked if I got on at Bear Creek to guarantee a spot on the bike rack. For me that defeated the purpose of actually riding my bike.

  4. sb

    Is the trail open 24 hours?

    Google maps recommends biking down 84th and then over on 8th ave to get to downtown Bellevue. Is that the real recommended route? I’ve never biked directly there before (just have taken transit directly to the transit center).

    1. AP

      The I-90 trail doesn’t close. I don’t think the 520 trail closes either. Trails like the Sammamish River Trail are considered “linear parks” and are thus technically closed from dusk until dawn but no one enforces that law.

      The Google advice is useless if you don’t say where you’re coming from or going to. But I’d take Evergreen Point north/south, and there’s a continuation of the trail on the east side going east/west between the bridge and the 520/Bellevue Way interchange.

    2. Yeah, for downtown Bellevue it’s either NE 8th or Lake Washington Boulevard. Other routes add either lots of distance, lots of hills, or lots of turns. In terms of riding conditions… six of one, half-dozen of the other. If you’re ultimately headed south of 8th you can veer right off 8th to the diagonal part of NE 5th to get on a quieter street, then jog down on 98th or 99th to NE 4th to get around the mall… and then you’re right out on a 5-lane arterial again east of 100th Ave. Or you can take that jog all the way south of Downtown Park and wind up on NE 2nd, which is at least a smaller street. If Bellevue chooses an east-west street for its upcoming downtown PBL demo project that might lead people to gravitate toward one particular route in from 520!

  5. asdf2

    Pleasently surprised that the 520 trail is quite a bit quieter than the I-90 trail.

    1. Richard

      That was my impression too as I rode across.

  6. Sad to have missed the opening ride! :( Someone stole my bike this month from a garage in downtown Bellevue..what a total bummer..riding any other would not be the same at the moment:( Please help find my ‘Lady’.. she’s listed on bikeindex.org and I am looking for the gentleman I bought from in a Costco parking lot I believe in Lynnwood or Everett a couple years ago. He and his wife are both on racing teams. She is Asian and was a little small for the bike, which is why I got to purchase it. Was a beautiful Scott, silver and white, probably Contessa model. If any this sounds familiar, or you can help locate this couple, please contact me at three oh one, eight oh. Too. Four zero one zero. Many thanks! Kudos to all the riders who supported opening day! And thanks to the DOT for this amazing path for cyclists! TKE1.

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