Westlake Avenue North Cycle Track
Revised April 22, 2014
The Westlake Cycle Track is a project to design and build a cycle track along Westlake Avenue North between Lake Union Park and the existing Ship Canal Trail in front of Diamond Marina (south of the Aurora Bridge overpass Cycle tracks are a means for bicyclists of all ages and abilities to travel safely via corridors largely free of pedestrians or vehicles.
SDOT’s primary goal is to improve safety for all travel modes.
Designing and constructing a cycle track on Westlake Avenue North has three key benefits:
During the 2007 Seattle Bicycle Master Plan outreach process, Westlake was one of the most requested facilities for bicycle infrastructure improvements. The proposed 2013 Bicycle Master Plan also designates a cycle track for Westlake Avenue North.
Bike ridership in this corridor is increasing partly due to growth in the South Lake Union and Westlake areas and partly because of the desire for a direct, level bike route protected from faster moving vehicles.
SDOT conducted the following corridor studies to inform cycle track design:
Many travel modes share limited space in the Westlake corridor, including residential, business, recreational, tourism and freight traffic. Westlake is a designated Major Truck Street – a type of street that accommodates significant freight movement through the City. Westlake is also a highly traveled commuter route. The Westlake Cycle Track will strive to balance these competing needs while meeting the key goal of improving safety.
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One typical section of the Westlake Ave North right-of-way, looking north – The configuration in the parking lot varies considerably along the length.
Bicyclists currently have three route options when traveling through the Westlake corridor:
The project has three key phases:
Phase 1 began by reviewing existing conditions and appropriate design criteria, as well as traffic and parking studies. Detailed reports on these aspects of the project will be distributed when complete. We will collect data from nearby businesses and residents on how they use the corridor shortly, and a Design Advisory Committee is currently being formed.
During late spring and early summer 2014, we will analyze possible alignments with the help of the Design Advisory Committee. We’ll hold a design open house on May 21 to seek additional input from the broader community.
We expect to hold an open house in September 2014 to share the resulting basic design. SDOT will recommend a preferred design before Phase 2 begins.
Involving the public in the project will help ensure a full understanding of current corridor use and future needs. We will seek public input in a variety of ways:
The first open house was held on Oct. 28, 2013 to introduce the project and help define key issues. Meeting materials are included in the table below.
The second open house will be held on May 21, 2014 to introduce potential alignments and invite feedback from the public. At the third open house, SDOT will present the recommended alignment along with preliminary design details.
A survey of Westlake businesses and residents within the project area was recently conducted to collect information about parking and delivery utilization of the corridor. Stay tuned for results of the survey. The survey is now closed.
Public presentations are an important opportunity for learning about the project. Feel free to email WCT@Seattle.gov or call 206-909-8578 to request a project representative come to your organization, business or group for a project briefing. Here is a list of previous presentations:
Mayor Ed Murray appointed the Westlake Cycle Track Design Advisory Committee, bringing representatives with a variety of perspectives together to improve safety for all modes of travel (pedestrian, bicyclists, motor vehicles, transit and freight) in the Westlake Avenue North right-of-way.
The Design Advisory Committee will bring the local knowledge and perspectives needed to ensure the project meets all objectives. The Committee includes 13 individuals representing a variety of perspectives.
*Note: The Westlake Stakeholders Group represents a variety of businesses and residents within the Westlake corridor.
Additional details about the DAC members are included in the DAC member fact sheet.
Members of the Design Advisory Committee (DAC) are expected to:
The list below outlines the DAC meeting schedule. Meeting materials will be posted online following each DAC meeting.
Spring 2014 meetings (March and April): DAC is formed, reviews expectations and charter, and learns project background. SDOT will share initial project information and the results of a business and resident survey. By the third meeting, SDOT will have initial design options to present for DAC feedback.
May 2014 open house: At a May open house, the public will review the DACs work to date and provide input on initial designs options.
Summer 2014 meetings (June through August): DAC will review public feedback, review special topics as needed (i.e. waste bin management), and discuss refined design options.
September 2014 open house: At the September open house, the public will review updated design options.
In late 2014, SDOT will select a design to move forward for environmental review and engineering.
In 2015, the DAC will reconvene to review key design milestones.
DAC meeting materials:
The budget for the Westlake Avenue North Cycle Track Project is currently estimated at $3.6 million. Funding comes in part from the Federal Highway Administration through the Puget Sound Regional Council (PSRC). The PSRC awards 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 the bonds for the Cheshiahud Loop.
If you have comments or questions about the Westlake Avenue North Cycle Track Project please contact us:
Project Hotline: 206-909-8578
Here are some other links that may be of interest: