Downtown Seattle just got easier to get around with new #4thavepbl!!! 🚲 🛴🎉
— seattledot (@seattledot) September 23, 2020
Crews have finished work on the first phase of the 4th Ave bike lane downtown.
The new two-way bike lane connects the six block from Pine St to Madison St, directly connecting Westlake Park and the Central Branch Library.
Future phases scheduled for 2021 should connect the bike lane through Belltown and into Pioneer Square. See our previous story for more on those plans.
This bike lane has been a long time coming after Mayor Ed Murray delayed it in 2016, then Mayor Jenny Durkan delayed it again in 2018. Safe streets supporters have protested on the street several times to urge the city to take bike safety and transportation seriously.
Because of downtown’s severe grades when headed east-west, 4th Ave is a very necessary complement to 2nd Ave because some of the steepest streets in the entire city separate these two streets. So they look close together on a map, but when you’re on the ground, they sure feel very far apart.
This is an odd time to make safe streets improvements downtown because so many of the destinations they reach are closed right now due to the pandemic. But that also makes it a very smart time to make these changes. When the central library and City Hall and all those other government and office buildings reopen, this bike lane will be there to help keep people safe and provide a non-motorized way to get there.
Have you ridden the 4th Ave bike lanes yet? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.