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Thursday, December 27, 2012

The City's New Strategy to Complete Contentious Burke-Gilman "Missing Link"

Posted by on Thu, Dec 27, 2012 at 3:01 PM

At a press conference this afternoon, Mayor Mike McGinn and Seattle City Council member Tom Rasmussen unveiled a plan to complete the so-called "missing link" of bike and pedestrian pathway along the Burke-Gilman Trail in Ballard.

The plan is really to draft another environmental impact study (exciting!) but it also represents an important step to moving forward in what has become a decade-plus-long court battle between businesses in the area, trail users, and the Seattle Department of Transportation.

“We are eager to complete the Missing Link, and conducting a full EIS is the best way to break the legal log jam on this project,” said McGinn in a statement. “We are also moving ahead on safety improvements on the street that can be implemented quickly to help everyone share the road.”

“I am confident that with careful planning both bicyclists and freight and industrial traffic will be able to co-exist successfully in Ballard,” added Rasmussen, chair of the City Council’s Transportation Committee.

The trail is currently nonexistent between 11th Avenue NW and the Hiram M. Chittenden Locks in Ballard, creating an area that is well documented as the highest bicycle collisions in the city.

In 2003 the City Council adopted a plan to close the missing link along the Shilshole alignment but opponents sued to stop construction. In 2008, the City conducted another environmental review of the area that was limited in scope, but it was once again tied up in court. Now the city is committing to a full, comprehensive EIS in 2013 to expedite the court challenges.

Meanwhile, city officials are also taking on a number of bike and pedestrian traffic improvements in the area where the trail project is proposed. SDOT has prepared specific recommended improvements that will be constructed over the next two years, including:

• Adding advisory bicycle lanes on NW 45th Street and other safety improvements.
• Installing striping and signage to create a traffic island and a 4-way stop at Ballard Avenue NW and 17th Avenue NW, and again at NW 48th Street and Ballard Avenue NW.
• Shoulder maintenance and replacement along Shilshole Avenue NW.
• Installing a curb ramp to allow bicycles access to the sidewalk to queue for the existing bike lane headed north on 24th Avenue NW at the intersection of Shilshole Avenue NW/24th Avenue NW and NW Market Street.

SDOT notes that these improvements are independent from the proposed trail project and will be coordinated with input from bike riders and the freight community.

 

Comments (40) RSS

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66
the law used to say "practicable" instead of "safe" Mr G canessplain the difference for us,...
Posted by pinch-flat on January 4, 2013 at 10:00 PM · Report this
dwightmoodyforgetsthings 65
@34- You can quote the law but you can't understand it. Yes it says "is safe" but like I said the judgement of what is safe is in the hands of the vehicle operator. So a bicyclist gets to take the lane if that feel that's what is safe.
Posted by dwightmoodyforgetsthings http://www.reddit.com/r/spaceclop on December 31, 2012 at 12:33 PM · Report this
63
@62 can do. I suggest: "being civil is a better way to convey my ideas to people".
Posted by CbytheSea on December 29, 2012 at 5:48 PM · Report this
61
@60. That's the spirit! Enjoy your weekend Mister G. Have a good new year.
Posted by CbytheSea on December 29, 2012 at 2:51 PM · Report this
59
@58 so, you're claiming you're correct 100 percent of the time?
Posted by CbytheSea on December 29, 2012 at 2:25 PM · Report this
57
@56 thanks for looking into it. May I suggest drafting an initiative?
I wasn't being phony. I just wonder why you get so defensive so quickly. But, yeah, I went too far. Your life is your's and its none of business. But as far as not knowing what I'm talking about, you've been equally as guilty of that crime. What you say about progressives could be easily applied to your posts too.
Posted by CbytheSea on December 29, 2012 at 1:44 PM · Report this
55
@54 bike taxes have been tried throughout Europe (you know that continent that loves taxes) and they ditched it. As I asked earlier, have you researched the issue?
I don't love McGinn, a lot of liberals don't either. I wouldn't say I carter to bicyclists, I just don't find them as threatening as you clearly do not do I think they're destroying our roads.
I guess you like wasting money rather finishing a project? That seems like a responsible way to go. It strikes me as rather sad to wish others' dreams crushed. But I don't know you in person and what you've gone through. I'd imagine from your hostility towards others, life hasn't been kind. I hope your day-to-day interactions with people around you go better than here.
Posted by CbytheSea on December 29, 2012 at 12:58 PM · Report this
53
@52. I thought we were getting somewhere with this whole acting like an adult. You know, stay on the topic. We all know the idiots lie on either of the extremes.
As I mentioned people have been trying to do what you are proposing but for some reason they all ended up ditching it. Do you wonder why?
I'm not saying I'm smarter than you. I'm simply pointing out that there is a history of trying to tax bikes and it seems to lose steam rather quickly. I think a more reasonable and doable system would be to add a tax on the sale of a bike. That's just my take.
I'm trying to be fair here, but it's really hard when you decide to go into diatribes against McGinn. I asked what you, not McGinn would do.
I haven't lied to you at all. I've pointed out that cars do a slim amount of damage to roads and that bike taxes have been tried in the past but always seem to fade away.
I don't see what I-1185 has anything to do with what we've been talking about. Unless, you're thinking a 2/3rds majority would go for a bike tax.
Posted by CbytheSea on December 29, 2012 at 12:14 PM · Report this
Some Old Nobodaddy Logged In 51
MisterG, there's some kids on your lawn. Better see to that.
Posted by Some Old Nobodaddy Logged In on December 29, 2012 at 2:29 AM · Report this
50
@48 see, that wasn't hard. You could have same this thread a lot of stupidity by simply ditching the insults and make a point.
How would you implement this tax? Would you require bikes to be registered with the state? Or would bicyclists simply volunteer to pay? Honestly, I don't see how you could make sure each bike on the road has paid this tax without some form of registration.
That said, have you done much research into bicycle registration? It has a pretty interesting history both domestically and aboard. I'm not saying it's impossible but past attempts certainly hint that it's a daunting task. Burdensome enough, that most countries have ditched it for monetary purposes and mostly register bikes simply for theft.
Like I said, and I have said to you many times in other threads, I'm most interested in ideas than insults. Do you think you're up to that?
Posted by CbytheSea on December 28, 2012 at 11:48 PM · Report this
DOUG. 49
@21: Thanks for the PDF. Written proof that you're a dumbshit.
Posted by DOUG. http://www.dougsvotersguide.com on December 28, 2012 at 11:08 PM · Report this
47
@45 good roads exist BECAUSE of bicycles...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Good_Roads_…

You hurt my brain. I was willing to humor you back in the intelligence test days, but you're just tiresome now.
Posted by pinch-flat on December 28, 2012 at 7:18 PM · Report this
46
@45 so what do you purpose? Bikes have been on the roads of Seattle since there were roads in Seattle. And as the sage old man you clearly are, you know they're not going away. So, instead of joking about killing people with your car and bitching on the Internet, why not offer a suggestion? I'm open to talk about it, different points of view often can work together to create viable solutions. Unless, you're just trolling. Then troll away old man! Keep them "progressives" off your lawn and guard your non native plants!
Posted by CbytheSea on December 28, 2012 at 6:49 PM · Report this
44
@43 well, those insults sure are the mark of your maturity. I just wanted to see if your contempt for freeloading was universal. Those out of state 18 wheelers are causing a lot of damage.
Anyhow, I'm not the grump irrationally hating people who enjoy riding bikes. Cheers!
Posted by CbytheSea on December 28, 2012 at 6:25 PM · Report this
You_Gotta_Be_Kidding_Me 42
@32
Oh! Well if cyclists want to use the space for recreation AND heavy industry, it sounds like they need grade separation. Maybe a cut and cover tunnel for bikes?
Posted by You_Gotta_Be_Kidding_Me on December 28, 2012 at 5:11 PM · Report this
41
@40 aren't they freeloading? They aren't paying for those roads.
Posted by CbytheSea on December 28, 2012 at 4:48 PM · Report this
39
@38 what about out of state drivers?
Posted by CbytheSea on December 28, 2012 at 4:31 PM · Report this
37
@35 I wasn't changing the subject. I simply asked a related question about the rules of the road and was curious where you stand. I still don't see how I'm freeloading considering I'm being taxed twice on my other modes of transport.
Bicycles don't do any damage to the road, so I don't see how they need to pay for it. As far as added infrastructure to make biking safer. Sure, you could call that freeloading. But you could say the same about free art classes for seniors.
Anyhow, your vitriol for bicyclists is pretty humorous. Keep fighting the good fight against a those "progressives". I heard they tracked you down via Slog and will take your car away and replace it with a unicycle.
Posted by CbytheSea on December 28, 2012 at 4:07 PM · Report this
33
@31 so if someone isn't going to work, it's a hobby? Do you get mad watching joggers? People walking their dogs? Children riding their skateboards? What about Sunday drivers? If subsidizing a 'hobby' is your gripe, why aren't you howling about parks? Kid's sports? Public pools?
As far as bikes breaking traffic laws, where's the anger in the people driving while on their phones?
Posted by CbytheSea on December 28, 2012 at 3:46 PM · Report this
32
What's the problem with buying out the businesses? Eroding the varied economic base of a city cripples the city's economy, that's the problem. Light industrial, maritime and shipping-related businesses help keep the city going. We cannot survive just selling coffee, apps and bike shorts to each other. Keep [the last remaining part of] Ballard [semi-] industrial!

Which, sadly, means no safe bike path through Shilshole. Sure, people ride there, but that's not the same as having a city-sanctioned trail. Which can't be done safely with industry there. Same discussion as last time, and the time before that...
Posted by fruitbat on December 28, 2012 at 3:42 PM · Report this
dwightmoodyforgetsthings 30
@27- Look again, floppy, the judge of safety for a cyclist is the cyclist. The law does indeed mean I get to ride in the middle of the lane if I feel like it just as a driver can go exceptionally slow if they feel unsafe. Of course law enforcement may ticket anyone they perceive to be being deliberately obstructive and then they can take it to a judge if everyone wants to do that.

But just to re-iterate: You're wrong.
Posted by dwightmoodyforgetsthings http://www.reddit.com/r/spaceclop on December 28, 2012 at 3:27 PM · Report this
29
@27 seriously, what's up with your bike hate? There's less cars on the road, more fuel for you to use and it helps people stay in shape, which in the long run saved everyone money in terms of healthcare.
Posted by CbytheSea on December 28, 2012 at 3:19 PM · Report this
28
Mister G, glad you're back to form. "Progressive" is your punch line and it makes me sad when you can't use it in everyone of your posts.
I offered the math for you. I don't know why you felt the need to rewrite what I just wrote. We reached the same conclusion. That said, I ride a bike and own two cars. One for getting around and the other is a commercial vehicle I use for deliveries. So your 'free loader' statement is pretty baseless.
Can you have a discussion without insults? I'd like to see you try, it'd be easier to take you seriously.
Posted by CbytheSea on December 28, 2012 at 3:17 PM · Report this
dwightmoodyforgetsthings 26
@13- I know you don't care about reality, but I'm going to try to correct you because of my own compulsion regarding seeing lies go uncontested:

State law in Washington says cyclists should ride on the right if the cyclist feels it is safe. I can legally take the lane if I feel it is unsafe to ride on the right side of the lane.

Now feel free to respond with the usual death threat, you impotent jackass.
Posted by dwightmoodyforgetsthings http://www.reddit.com/r/spaceclop on December 28, 2012 at 2:51 PM · Report this
22
@21 re: cars do no damage to a road. Your link doesn't say that. It says they don't do much damage. But think of it this way, how many cars drive on a road per day. On my sleepy little Wallingford street, I'd guess about 100 per day, so now you have about 36,500 per year, or according to your link about 3 super heavy trucks per year. Over the span of twenty years, you've got a fucked up road. Now remember this is for a sleepy little street. Think about a main road. How can you say cars don't mess up roads when nearly all our roads are messed up?
Your animosity towards bikes is as rational as tiger fearing a mouse.
Posted by CbytheSea on December 28, 2012 at 2:31 PM · Report this
20
@18 you forgot to toss in a reference to those horrid "progressives".
Posted by CbytheSea on December 28, 2012 at 1:57 PM · Report this
DOUG. 19
@18: Seattle's roads are funded primarily through sales and property taxes, which everyone pays. Bikes do no damage to infrastructure, so cyclists pay way more than their fair share to fund roadways. You're welcome.
Posted by DOUG. http://www.dougsvotersguide.com on December 28, 2012 at 1:47 PM · Report this
You_Gotta_Be_Kidding_Me 17
@3
That is entirely possible. I freely admit that I know next to nothing about this except for that it's a perennial favorite around here. But other than the expense (which is relative), how is buying the blockers out not a solution?

Cyclists want a trail. Businesses are usually motivated by money. Give them what they want to get what you want. Your expense (and, potentially, their gain) is short term but your gain is permanent.

Conservation groups interested in preserving forests do this with timber land. Why shouldn’t other special interest groups?

Though I guess you could wait for the city, and the courts, to do their thing… I wonder if anyone here will still be able to peddle a bike by then. Guess it will be a nice path to push a walker down though…
Posted by You_Gotta_Be_Kidding_Me on December 28, 2012 at 9:43 AM · Report this
emor 16
That the missing link is still missing is ridiculous. Do the morons opposing the trail realize that the bikes who would use the trail are already riding through the missing link?

Also, everyone should ignore Mr. G. He's an implacable troll.
Posted by emor on December 28, 2012 at 9:06 AM · Report this
14
Ballard appears to have a moderately high concentration of solo bike crashes - I've done that myself there and yeah, Mr. G it did feel a bit like I failed an intelligence test...

but Cienna's assertion that Ballard is well documented as the highest bicycle collision area in the city is not correct.

http://www.bikewise.org/pub/crash

I actually think mixed-use-paths are the most unsafe form of infrastructure for cyclists. I'm not going to hold that out as a fact though.
Posted by JAT on December 28, 2012 at 8:05 AM · Report this
12
The four way stops at 17th and 48th will be great. I would like to see a "bicycles may use full lane for the length of Shilshole, then put up cameras to document the road raging drivers and unsafe passing maneuvers.
Posted by Why are there cars? on December 28, 2012 at 12:57 AM · Report this
10
This is just pathetic and embarassing. Honestly. Seattle has struggled to fulfill its bike infrastructure promises, but if nothing else they should have taken care of this, easily the most high traffic, and high profile bike route in the region.

As much as I disagree with the stance of the Ballard Chamber, politics is about building coalitions, using influence, and making things happen. Allowing a neighborhood business group to block the most important regional bike route for over a decade is simply inexcusable for our elected leaders.
Posted by JoshMahar on December 27, 2012 at 9:42 PM · Report this
9
#5 I actually like to STOP at stop signs, as I don't want to get run over on my bike. BTW thanks for your post about top news stories. Was hilarious! Thank heaven Seattle actually might complete Burke-Gilman in my lifetime!
Posted by pat L on December 27, 2012 at 7:37 PM · Report this
8
@5 you forgot to log on as Strangers Worst Nightmare, you know that account you save for your bottom shelf trolling.
Mister G is saved for whining about the "progressive" war on cars.
Posted by CbytheSea on December 27, 2012 at 7:29 PM · Report this
Gordon Werner 7
@1 ... even if that was a good idea (not saying it is) ... then the city would be on the hook for any and all environmental cleanup of the lots (which would cost big $$$$)
Posted by Gordon Werner on December 27, 2012 at 7:14 PM · Report this
TVDinner 6
@5: We can always count on you to advocate vehicular homicide. Way to elevate the conversation! Keep being awesome!
Posted by TVDinner http:// on December 27, 2012 at 5:38 PM · Report this
DOUG. 4
Fuck the Ballard Chamber of Commerce. Many of the businesses that oppose this trail (Dante's cancer dogs, for example) are likely frequented by bike-riding SLOG readers. Don't shop/eat/drink anywhere with a Ballard Chamber member sticker on the window.
Posted by DOUG. http://www.dougsvotersguide.com on December 27, 2012 at 4:54 PM · Report this
treacle 3
@1 - severe misreading of the entire situation.

@2 - *Clapclapclapclap*, Oh this comedian is just so funny! I'm glad I came here... I think I'll have another drink now.
Posted by treacle on December 27, 2012 at 4:46 PM · Report this
Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn 2
@1
You_Gotta_Be_Kidding_Me, ladies and germs. He'll be here all night. Don't forget to tip your waitress.
Posted by Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn http://youtu.be/zu-akdyxpUc on December 27, 2012 at 4:19 PM · Report this
You_Gotta_Be_Kidding_Me 1
Here's a modest proposal: Buy out the business's that claim to be damaged by the trail and turn their property into park land along the trail (or run the trail through it). Win/win. I'm sure a consortium of cyclist clubs and enthusiasts could raise the cash to do it with the help of a few wealthy donors.

Remove the problems. Everyone has a price.
Posted by You_Gotta_Be_Kidding_Me on December 27, 2012 at 3:48 PM · Report this

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