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Bike Happy: When bikes ruled Seattle

EDITOR’S NOTE: Thanks again to Brock Howell of Bike Happy for putting together this comprehensive weekly newsletter.


  1. Watch excellent videos about bicycling history.
  2. Seattle Bike Blog called for Mayor Durkan to implement protected bike lanes on Rainier Avenue S and to reset the Move Seattle Levy/Plan with priority to walking and biking.
  3. JBLM has bikeshare.

There are three great videos for you to watch this week. First, Knute Berger provides a brief history of Seattle bicycling in the 1890s. Then Hennessy (yeah, that Hennessy) produced a series of short inspirational videos of Major Taylor, including one about the “Six Day Race” at Madison Square Garden.

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  • iDatalabs CEO talks about how he achieves a work-life balance, in part by biking. GeekWire.
  • A summer romance that started with a bike theft and a trip to a bike shop rekindles 40 years later. Times Colonist.
  • PSE says your old refrigerator could become a bike, if you recycle it. KING5.
  • Former Seattleite Maddie Carlson writes about her first Ladd’s 500 in Portland. BikePortland.
  • Be prepared for the spring-time sunshowers. Biking in the Rain.
  • Are wide or narrow handlebars right for you? Jan Heine’s Blog





  • eBikes
    • “Pilot program would allow e-bikes on 5 popular trails in Seattle,” KOMO.
    • The new state e-bike law goes into effect this summer, which allows e-bikes powered up to 20mph to ride on trails, bike lanes, and sidewalks where local law also allows. Curbed.
    • “E-bikers, these sidewalks are made for walking,” Doug McDonald, Crosscut.
  • Seattle
    • “Mayor Durkan is right, we do need a ‘reset’ on Move Seattle — to prioritizing biking,” SBB.
    • “Finding a Balance Between Green Transportation and Safety,” Rachel Hart, Seattle Mag.
    • “Ideal of congestion pricing faces real-life roadblocks in Seattle,” Jon Talton, Seattle Times.
    • “Creating Bike Lanes Isn’t Easy. Just Ask Baltimore. Or Boulder. Or Seattle.” WSJ.
  • North Seattle
    • “Sand Point Way NE To Get New Sidewalks, But Other Changes Uncertain,” Urbanist.
    • A neighbors says protected bike lanes on 35th Ave NE are overdue. Crosscut.
    • Clash over homeless camp sweep near Burke-Gilman Trail. KIRO7MyNw.
  • South Seattle
    • “Rainier RapidRide remake concepts fall short + Mayor Durkan should push SDOT for a more visionary plan,” SBB.
  • Central Seattle
    • “With plan to start construction later in 2018, WSDOT ready to talk ‘Rest of the West’ plans including new Montlake lid,” CHS Blog.
    • SDOT will start the second phase (Jackson St to Rainier Ave) of the 23rd Avenue Paving & Rechannelization Project this year, but SDOT has removed the bus-only lanes through Montlake for phase 3 (John St to the Montlake Cut). CHS Blog.
  • Eastside
    • Kirkland will construct an impressive set of biking and walking improvements this and next year, including for Lake Washington Blvd and Market Street, neighborhood greenways in the Rose Hill neighborhoods, a trail connection from the Cross Kirkland Trail to the Redmond Central Connector Trail, and walking routes to A.G. Bell and Juanita Elementary Schools. Kirkland Views.
    • “Cycling Seattle’s new 520 Trail, which opens vistas, links communities,” Bill Thorness, Seattle Times.
    • Neighbors in Motion tackling Mercer Way shoulder paving and biking safety, MI Reporter.
  • North King & Snohomish Counties
    • Bothell keeps massive urban park as housing boom continues,” Q13.
  • Pierce County
    • Joint Base Lewis-McChord (JBLM) and Pierce Transit have a bikeshare program called “GO Bike”! Nisqually Valley News.
  • State
  • Research
    • Hi-Viz: “A recent study from researchers at the University of Bologna adds to a growing body of evidence regarding their effects of laws that require bicyclists to wear high-visibility clothing.” Planetizen.





Bike Maintenance & Retail
Mechanics & Retail Staff, Gregg’s Cycles

Bike Product Industry
Sales and Marketing Specialist, Sportworks
Director of Sales and Marketing, Sportworks
Product Design and Development Engineer, Sportworks

Bike Education & Training
Major Taylor Ride Leader/Instructor, Cascade
Summer Camp Head Counselor, Cascade
Summer Camp Counselor, Cascade
Counselor-in-Training (Seasonal), Cascade
Walk N Roll Teacher Assistant, Intercity Transit
Bicycle Specialist – Recreation Leader II, City of Auburn
Specialized Recreation Cycling Assistant – Recreation Leader I, City of Auburn

Commute Services & Other Outreach
Sounders FC Bike Valet Parking Manager & Assistants, Bike Works
Outreach Ambassador – South Bellevue #1, Alta
Outreach Ambassador – South Bellevue #2, Alta
Outreach Ambassador – Kent, Alta

Policy, Planning, & Engineering
East King County Policy Manager, Cascade
Designer – Level 1, Alta
Group Leaders – Senior Associates, Alta
Public Space Management Inspector, SDOT
Traffic Records & Data Supervisor, SDOT
Supervising Project Manager, SDOT
Transportation Planning Intern, Bellevue (5/11)
Multimodal Transportation Planning Specialist 3, WSDOT (4/29)

Communications, Development, & Management
Development & Communications Coordinator, Bike Works
Program Coordinator, Bike Works
Staff Accountant, Cascade



In the past week, six bikes were reported as stolen to SPD, not counting stolen bikes part of burglaries and assaults. Help fight back by (1) registering your bike on Bike Index, and (2) always locking up your bike with a U lock, even inside a bike room. Bicycle Security Advisors provides additional information on how to keep your bike safe.


At night, don’t use a flashing or strobing white light as a headlight — it’s illegal and makes it very difficult to see for fellow on-coming riders (especially on a trail), as well as drivers. It could even cause seizures.  During day-time hours when the sky might be overcast but there’s more ambient light, a flashing light is less of an issue but still illegal under state law. Kitsap Sun.


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6 responses to “Bike Happy: When bikes ruled Seattle”

  1. pqbuffington

    Hey, is anybody talking (perhaps, unawares?) ‘bout the extended closure of the Interurban Trail at Ash Way and Maple Road in the Lynnwood / Swamp Creek environs?
    The “obvious” detour (Alderwood Mall Pkwy to 164th St SW) leaves much to desire…I am thinking a much more radical work-around to get to the bike lanes on 52nd Ave W, Beverly Park Rd, Holly Dr, etc…

    Comment and/or suggestions?

    1. Here’s the recent news coverage of the Interurban Trail project(s):
      – “Crews completing “ missing link ” in the Interurban Trail,” Everett Herald (Mar. 24)
      – “Work begins March 28 for Interurban Trail, 212th Street improvement project,” MyEdmonds (Mar. 25)
      – “Construction to begin on new intersection near Alderwood mall,” Everett Herald (Apr. 21)

      1. pqbuffington

        Thanks Brock!
        The 212th work will be great, but it is not really an issue as far as disrupting Interurban travel…the Maple Road and Ash Way construction work at Swamp Creek much more problematic.

    2. pqbuffington

      In case anyone rides to/from Everett on the Interurban, here is one route around the Maple Road and Ash Way construction work at Swamp Creek. While a bit meandering, it is no more tortuous than the trail itself and even a bit quicker…anyways, it was a rather pleasant this morning:

      West on 224 St SW (across 99)
      North on 76th Ave W
      East on 208th St SW
      North on 68th Ave W
      East on 188th St SW
      North on 60th Ave W
      East on 173rd Pl SW
      North on 56th Ave W
      East on 169th Pl SW
      North on 52nd Ave W
      North East on Beverly Park Rd / Holly Dr
      North on 4th Ave W
      East on W Casino Rd (to Interurban Trail)

      1. Yeah, I think the long and short of it is that trying to find the shortest way back onto the trail is the path of pain. Thanks for working out a specific route through!

        The very poor quality and connectivity of the pedestrian and bike network in and around I-5 in Lynnwood, evidenced by the magnitude of detours caused by the closure of a single, relatively small intersection, ought to give pause to folks planning for growth around Sound Transit rail stations over the next generation or so. I used to have to get to the current bus stations (Lynnwood TC or Ash Way P&R) from the east regularly, and even as a pretty confident rider (and a relatively strong climber) I never found anything I was comfortable and happy with.

        The freeways and their interchanges were built carelessly, cutting off sustainable local travel, and we won’t fix it without building expensive bridges or removing some of the car stuff. It’s like the challenges of the Northgate Pedestrian Bridge, in macrocosm: where we built and planned carelessly in the past, we’ll be forced to build expensively and with relatively disappointing results in the future.

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