E Union St Protected Bike Lane

Updated: September 9, 2020

What’s happening now?

Seattle Department of Transportation has made the difficult decision to delay the construction of the E Union St Protected Bike Lane (PBL) project, which was originally scheduled to begin this fall. This decision came about as King County Metro needs to realign its overhead trolley wires along E. Union St per its safety protocol. This work needs to be completed prior to construction of the protected bike lane to avoid significant impact to on street parking, commercial load zones, and ADA access on this corridor. The decision was made with consideration of these parking and curb space operation impacts, in addition to the challenges of COVID 19 that the community and local businesses are already experiencing.

SDOT and Metro remain committed to improving pedestrian and bicyclist safety in this neighborhood. We are pleased to announce that our planned improvements to pedestrian crossing experiences at 22nd Ave and 23rd Ave have been implemented ahead of schedule. Please stay tuned for updates on the E. Union St Protected Bike Lane project schedule in the upcoming months. We look forward to sharing good news in early 2021!

For comments or questions about the E Union St Protected Bike Lane project, please email us or reach us by phone: (206) 257-2202. Click here for comments or questions regarding King County Metro's trolley wire realignment.

Project Overview

Seattle has a Bicycle Master Plan (BMP) which provides a framework for improving the bicycling environment throughout the city. The BMP recommends E Union St for a protected bicycle lane (PBL). SDOT evaluated multiple east/west bicycle routes to help connect to existing bike facilities and improve the overall bicycle network. SDOT evaluated multiple east/west bicycle routes, and the Union St PBL was the community's preferred bicycle improvement.

Project Goals

  • Enhance safety by upgrading the existing bicycle lanes
  • Retain as much parking as possible along the corridor
  • Improve transit speed and reliability
  • Provide a comfortable and predictable bicycle connection between Broadway, the Central District, and MLK Jr Way

Project Elements

  • Upgrade the existing bike lane into a parking protected bike lane (PBL) from 14th Ave to 26th Ave
  • Add an uphill PBL and a downhill sharrow lane from 26th Ave to Martin Luther King Jr Way

Project Area

Project area map


  • Improve travel experience for people biking, walking, and driving, including freight and bus operators
  • Reduce collisions to help us achieve our Vision Zero goal

Parking and Bus Stops

  • This project will minimize impacts to parking spaces on E Union St
  • King County Metro will consolidate a few bus stops on E Union St to help keep buses moving and on-time
  • The stop consolidation plus the relocation of a school bus zone will increase parking along E Union St

Updated Design Concept

What we heard

During our 2019 outreach we heard the following themes:

  • Support for implementing the PBL.
  • Concern about the PBL not crossing 23rd Ave.
  • Need for increased safety near schools. 
  • Interest in reducing impacts to bus stops and routes.
  • Need for increased pedestrian and bicyclist safety.

Design updates:

We've updated the design based on public input. Key updates include:

  • A complete PBL connection through the 23rd Ave intersection.
  • Maintain all loading zones and minimize impacts to parking.
  • Relocation of a school bus loading zone onto 18th Ave.
  • Lowering the corridor speed to 25 miles per hour.

Project map showing updated design.

We will continue to refine this design into spring 2020. We are working to minimize impacts to parking and bus stops, but we may need to make additional changes to meet the city's safety and operational standards.

PBL concept (14th Ave to 26th Ave)

Bi-directional protected bike lane concept with two parking lanes

Uphill PBL/downhill sharrow concept (26th Ave to Martin Luther King Jr Way)

Uphill protected bike lane with downhill sharrow concept with two parking lanes


This project was funded by the voter-approved Move Seattle Levy. Learn more about the Levy to Move Seattle.

Outreach & Schedule

Project schedule graphic

Subject to change

Early - Mid 2019: Planning

Mid 2019 - Mid 2020: Design

Mid 2020: Construction


Winter 2020

Spring 2019


If you need this information translated, please call (206) 257-2202.

Si necesita traducir esta información al Español, llame al (206) 257-2202.