Westlake Avenue North Cycle Track
Revised November 26, 2013
The Westlake Avenue North Cycle Track is a Seattle Department of Transportation project to develop and study alternatives for a two-way cycle track within the Westlake Avenue North public right-of-way. SDOT plans to study several alternative routes along Westlake, between Lake Union Park and the access point for the Ship Canal Trail south of the Fremont Bridge (just north of Halladay Street).
The project has three key phases:
SDOT has identified Westlake Avenue North for a cycle track for several reasons:
During the 2007 Seattle Bicycle Master Plan process, Westlake was the second-most requested facility for bicycle infrastructure improvements after Eastlake Avenue; the current draft of the 2013 Update to the Bicycle Master Plan suggested a cycle track for Westlake Avenue North, as noted on the proposed facility map.
It is anticipated that cycle track ridership would be high considering current bicycle use in the corridor, growth in the South Lake Union area and the appeal of a protected facility. Adding to this, Puget Sound BikeShare is planning to launch a system in 2014, with proposed stations in the nearby South Lake Union neighborhood less than a mile away.
Project Goals & Objectives
SDOT’s overarching goal is improved safety for all travel modes, including pedestrians, bicyclists, motor vehicles, transit and freight.
The objectives of the Westlake Avenue North Cycle Track Project are:
Section of east sidewalk, within parking lot
Currently, bicycles have three route options when traveling through the Westlake corridor:
Westlake Corridor parking lot
The 2007 Bicycle Master Plan identifies the Westlake Corridor as, “in need of further study” due to safety concerns.
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Westlake Ave North existing condition, looking north
Planting strip separating Westlake Avenue North from parking lot
In the Westlake Corridor there are many travel modes sharing limited space. This includes residential, business, recreational, tourism and freight traffic. The corridor is a designated Major Truck Street. A Major Truck Street is a street classification for an arterial street that accommodates significant freight movement through the City, and to and from major freight traffic generators. It is also a highly traveled commuter route.
The Westlake Avenue North Cycle Track Project will strive to balance the needs of all modes of travel through the corridor. As such, project development is and will continue to be in coordination with the Ballard to Downtown High Capacity Transit Planning Study, which is currently considering the Westlake Corridor for future placement on High Capacity Transit.
Phase 1 of the Westlake Avenue North Cycle Track Project is Concept Development and Alternatives Evaluation. Public outreach is a main component, critical to ensuring a full understanding of corridor uses and future needs. Throughout the project, our team will work closely with community groups, businesses, and nearby neighbors to gather information and help shape the design of the corridor. Interested parties include, but are not limited to:
Following the completion of updated research regarding corridor transportation uses, the team hosted a public open house in late October to kick off concept development. Compiling feedback from interested and impacted stakeholders, we will derive cycle track route alternatives for further study, coming back to stakeholders for input to refine and narrow down the options.
Alternatives evaluation is expected to continue through summer 2014, with final design of a preferred alternative anticipated from summer 2014 through spring 2015. We will continue to provide project information via multiple outlets – this web site; email notices; media advisories; briefings; mailings; and public meetings.To get updates via E-mail, sign up below!
The project schedule begins with research to analyze current uses along the corridor, followed by public outreach and engagement to begin concept development leading toward potential alignment alternatives.
The first public meeting was held on October 28, 2013 at B.F. Day Elementary School (3921 Linden Ave N, Seattle 98103). Over 325 people attended to share their concerns and recommendations on cycle track design.
Following the public open house, a summary of community concerns and interests will be developed and shared with the public and the project team. A community design charrette will then focus on balancing the needs of all stakeholders to narrow down a preferred alternative. Look for more information on this web site and in outreach materials. The preferred alternative will then move into Phase 2 of the project – final design. The anticipated schedule is:
At this time, the budget for the Westlake Avenue North Cycle Track Project is an estimated $3.6 million. Funding comes in part from the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) through the Puget Sound Regional Council. The PSRC awards such Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality (CMAQ) funds in a competitive process for non-motorized projects across the region. The project is also funded by surplus funds from the Spokane Viaduct Project as well as Cheshiahud Trail Bonds.
If you have comments or questions about the Westlake Avenue North Cycle Track Project please contact us at:
Project Hotline: 206-909-8578