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Ship Canal Trail, Phase II

November 10, 2011

UPDATE:  Trail Opens November 19th!  

Phase II of the Ship Canal Trail is wrapping up with a grand opening planned for Saturday, November 19, at 11 a.m.  The event will take place on the grassy area south of and below W Emerson Street Bridge (see picture below left) where it intersects with 16th Avenue W.

To get there enter onto 16th Avenue W (see picture lower right) heading south briefly and then east.


Join us as we cut the ribbon and let cyclists and pedestrians try out this new segment from Emerson Street near Fisherman's Terminal to 11th Avenue West.

If you come by car, you might want to park at and visit Fisherman’s Terminal then head on over!  *Please note 16th Avenue W at the event location is a private access road and parking is not permitted along it. Click here to see event location map.

This final phase of the Ship Canal Trail completes the connection from the Elliott Bay Trail and the Interbay and Magnolia neighborhoods to bicycle routes at the Fremont Bridge, including the Interurban route on Fremont Avenue North, the Burke-Gilman Trail, and the Dexter Avenue route.

Completion of this trail makes bike riding in the south canal area more comfortable for all levels of bicyclists and offers increased safety where cyclists and heavy industrial traffic have long shared traveling space. 

Safety improvements include fencing all along the trail and a new railroad crossing signal installed by Burlington Northern Santa Fe along with switchbacks on either side to ensure cyclists slow down before approaching active tracks. 

Questions? Contact LeAnne Nelson at or 206-684-3897.

Brief Project Description

Construction crews complete Phase II, Contract 1

This project is the long-awaited extension of the Ship Canal Trail, which eliminates a critical gap in Seattle's Urban Trails System. Phase II of the project covers about 3/4 of a mile along the south side of the Ship Canal, beginning at 6th Ave W (where Phase 1 ends) and terminating near Fisherman's Terminal where the trail will join the Emerson Street bike path. Once completed, the Ship Canal Trail will make it possible to bicycle from Redmond to downtown Seattle almost entirely on dedicated bicycle facilities.

Project Status:

Phase II of the project was split into two construction contracts. Contract 1 was completed in the spring of 2010. This contract extended the trail from 6th Avenue West to 11th Avenue West. Contract 2 will extend the trail from 11th Avenue West to Emerson Street near Fisherman's Terminal.

A number of improvements had to be made before Contract 2 construction could begin. Existing mainline tracks were removed this spring by Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway (BNSF) in preparation for critical utility relocation. Relocation of that main water line had to be scheduled around the adjacent property owner's business needs. Once the utility was relocated, the mainline tracks; railroad crossings; and a railroad signal had to be reinstalled by BNSF - work that is expected to wrap up by Mid-August 2011. Following a couple other small hurdles, the last segment of the Ship Canal Trail will then be installed; this is expected to begin in September 2011 and be complete by the end of the year.

Tentative Schedule Approximate Start of Work

Contract 1: trail project

Extend trail to 11th Avenue West Completed Spring 2010
Contract 2: (Tentative)
Utility relocations Spring/Summer 2011

Track realignment & crossing construction (BNSF)

Spring/Summer 2011

Extend trail to Fisherman's Terminal Summer/Fall 2011

For more information about the project, please contact:

LeAnne Nelson, Project Information Officer or 206-684-3897

Sue Byers, Project Manager
Susan.Byers@Seattle.Gov or (206) 733-9076

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