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City to complete Burke Gilman ‘missing link’

Posted by Geeky Swedes on June 10th, 2009

The city has given the green light to complete the “missing link” of the Burke Gilman Trail despite an appeal from a group of Ballard businesses.

Sue Tanner with the city’s Office of the Hearing Examiner has ruled in favor of completing the stretch between 11 Ave. NW and the Locks, long considered a dangerous stretch for bicyclists. Last November, the Ballard Interbay Northend Manufacturing & Industrial Center, the North Seattle Industrial Association and the Ballard Chamber of Commerce filed an appeal (.pdf) saying the city’s plans to complete the missing link would “have substantial adverse impacts to this maritime and industrial community,” from the environment to parking. The Cascade Bicycle Club disagreed, filing a motion to intervene in the stalled process. The decision by Tanner allows the city to move forward.

“I am pleased the Hearing Examiner affirmed the city’s work on the Burke-Gilman Trail,” said Mayor Greg Nickels. “I’ve remained sensitive to the concerns of local property owners. It’s time to move forward and complete this popular project.” We spoke with Warren Aakervik of Ballard Oil who is disappointed in the decision. He believes that bicyclist commuters will not use the trail, only recreational riders. “You don’t impact your maritime industry to this degree for recreation,” he says. “We have to stop it any way we can, to stop this to keep the maritime industry around.”

According to a press release from the Cascade Bicycle Club (.pdf), “This project will provide a new, separated trail and signed routes for bicyclists. Two Shilshole Avenue intersections, located at 17th Avenue NW and NW Vernon Place, will be redesigned to allow for safer crossing by bicyclists. In addition, the hazardous railroad tracks under the Ballard Bridge will be reconfigured.”

No word yet on exactly when construction work will get underway.

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82 reader comments so far ↓

  • 1 Archibald // Jun 10, 2009 at 10:23 pm

    Get that work started soon! I look forward to the improvements.

  • 2 boardbrown // Jun 10, 2009 at 10:24 pm

    Yee Haw!

  • 3 gurple // Jun 10, 2009 at 10:29 pm

    Woo hoo! This will prevent accidents, speed up everyone commuting through the area, and make the whole NW part of the city safer for bicyclists.

    For me personally, in an eon or two when this is done it'll shave at least 5 minutes off my commute and make me feel a lot safer.

  • 4 gcm // Jun 10, 2009 at 10:35 pm

    woohoo! anything that makes biking around town safer is goodness.

  • 5 b // Jun 10, 2009 at 10:42 pm

    That is awesome! I am getting my bike ready!!!

  • 6 Biking mom // Jun 10, 2009 at 10:44 pm

    Glad I won't have to worry about biking with my children to Golden Gardens when this is complete! Yay Cascade!

  • 7 gurple // Jun 10, 2009 at 10:50 pm

    Apparently the industry group is already talking about an appeal to superior court:
    http://www.ballardnewstribune.com/2009/06/09/ne

    If I weren't already a Cascade member, I would be joining now!

  • 8 srcsmgrl // Jun 10, 2009 at 10:52 pm

    I am so glad to hear that! Yay for the trail!

  • 9 Fredrickson // Jun 10, 2009 at 11:46 pm

    Amazing. My hat goes off to the community for their relentless effort to push this through. And major respect to Nickels and the city for the funding that has already been allocated for the project. Nickels has already completed three of the remaining segments during his term, and here comes the fourth and final segment!

  • 10 SaltyRod // Jun 10, 2009 at 11:49 pm

    If the bikes would follow the law there would be no problem. Ballard industry YES. Special interest hobbyists NO!

  • 11 gurple // Jun 10, 2009 at 11:58 pm

    I disrespectfully disagree, LeakyRod. I commute to work by bike most days (special interest? hobbyist?), and I obey the laws. There are two pain points on my route:

    1) in the morning, turning left onto Shilshole after getting down there from Ballard Ave.
    2) in the evening, making a diagonal crossing of the intersection near Fred Meyer at the end of the B-G

    Both of these spots are inherently dangerous. 1) has low visibility and cars moving at high speed. 2) forces cyclists to do something that no one is happy about: change from being a 'pedestrian' to being a 'vehicle', while crossing a busy intersection; the inevitable “you go! no, you go!” slows everyone down.

    In addition, when I started riding I had a nasty fall crossing the tracks just west of Fred Meyer. I've since learned to deal with them, but at least once a week I see someone making the same mistake and getting on the wrong side of them.

    There exists a problem. This will help solve it.

  • 12 Long Timer // Jun 11, 2009 at 12:21 am

    Hip hip hooray !!!!

  • 13 Biking mom // Jun 11, 2009 at 12:27 am

    Uhhhh SaltyRod, if you think there aren't “special interests” behind opposition to this plan (and your safety and your nonmotorized mobility), you're head's in the sand & gravel. At least bicyclists are transparent in their advocacy work.

  • 14 scotts // Jun 11, 2009 at 12:35 am

    In response to the Ballard Oil owner, I guess we should stop building roads that drivers use for non-commuting purposes.

  • 15 Silver // Jun 11, 2009 at 1:51 am

    YES! This is such good news!

    Bounce bounce bounce!!!

  • 16 eric // Jun 11, 2009 at 1:56 am

    yeah, finally.

    the business groups have block this long enough.

  • 17 Kyle // Jun 11, 2009 at 2:07 am

    This normally-bike commuter will appreciate it. By the time it's built, I'll be long healed from my current injury — nearly broke my elbow going over my handlebars after hitting a bad patch of pavement on another bike trail.

  • 18 Pumped // Jun 11, 2009 at 2:21 am

    Woo-hoo! I am a bicycle commuter who will ride on it every day! I will ride on it on the weekend for going places, too!

  • 19 DEF // Jun 11, 2009 at 3:14 am

    I regularly commute on the trail to the East of the danger stretch, and often ride for recreation through it. I'll be really happy to see the trail completed.

    But–Ballard industrial businesses must feel like they've been hit with a one-two punch after this decision and the deep-bore tunnel plan's lame neglect of trucking routes to Ballard. I wouldn't blame them for thinking the city was out to get them. Don't forget there is another kind of big business that can benefit from putting the squeeze on maritime industry: developers.

    Having a working waterfront is a good thing. It brings diversity to the kinds people working in Ballard and to the city's tax base. And let's face it, biking through nothing but a canyon of condos and office parks (which is what will replace the working waterfront if it's shut down) would totally suck.

    I hope Ballard bicyclists will rise the occasion and prove that a bike trail and business can coexist. I think they can if the trail's well designed and riders are willing to give the right of way when it makes sense. And how about putting some of that activism toward making sure we get a better tunnel plan for Ballard business?

  • 20 boardbrown // Jun 11, 2009 at 4:03 am

    It's not only up to cyclists to ensure coexistance. It's everyone's job. Bike or no bike.

  • 21 fuzzbeans // Jun 11, 2009 at 4:11 am

    “Special interest” means anyone who doesn't think like you, right?

  • 22 motorrad // Jun 11, 2009 at 5:24 am

    Hey bumpyrod,

    I have been trying to understand how this will negatively impact industry and businesses. I see a huge positive impact to traffic as now hopefully bikes will be out of the traffic lanes. It sucks having to watch out for the bikes especially at the intersection turning left toward Golden Gardens or straight onto 24th! Now cars won't have to wait while the bikers start slowly up the hill by where Mandrakes was. I really am confused as to how this will hurt business. The funny thing is that when those businesses started lobbying selfishly put people's safety in jeopardy, bikers started to boycott businesses in the area. Oh, I am sure it didn't mean much dollar wise. but many of us felt better.

    And curvedrod, in this case the few businesses trying to stand in the way of a bike path that benefits all traffic in the area, cars and trucks, is the special interest lobby! I hope that at least that you think of how you would want a driver to drive around a loved one of yours, while riding their bike.

  • 23 bilsemon // Jun 11, 2009 at 5:32 am

    Suzie Burke will not like this. At all.

  • 24 motorrad // Jun 11, 2009 at 5:37 am

    Can someone please explain how a bike path is a huge blow and detriment to the Maritime industry? I have tried to see it but just don't.

  • 25 Fredrickson // Jun 11, 2009 at 5:42 am

    WTF are you talking about? There already is a trail along all of her fremont properties. I was unaware that she owned anything near the missing link.

  • 26 anonymous // Jun 11, 2009 at 6:03 am

    Sooo, if businesses think that stretch of the trail isn't going to be used a lot, then why are they fighting it? I mean, if it's only going to be “recreational” users, then how much negative impact could there be? I walk through there a lot on weekends, and there doesn't seem to be a whole lot of business getting done at that time. So, how many workday recreators are we talking about?

    Or is the impact on businesses supposedly only during construction times?

  • 27 ballardcw // Jun 11, 2009 at 6:34 am

    I'm assuming the negative impact they are talking is primarily loss of parking on the gravel areas, assuming that is where the trail goes. During the day there is quite a bit of parking that occurs in those areas by employees of the business in those areas. So if a trail is built but is not used, it still will impact them. Other impacts depending on the design may be related to driveway access, since there are some decent size trucks that need to get in an out.

  • 28 Think Logically // Jun 11, 2009 at 7:00 am

    Please don't blame Warren when your kid gets ran over by a semi or a train on her trike as she is not paying attention. It is not that the businesses don't want the trail, they absolutely do, just not in immediate the path of their trucks or trains. It's not about them making a buck, it is about the safety of the trail users. The businesses really don't want another biker to die when they meet one of their vehicles as they are not paying attention or not following the rules of the road. Before you rant on about them having to pay attention in their trucks, do your research and find any article about any at-fault accidents by any of the businesses or tains that are housed along the path. Compare that to how many fatal bike accidents that are caused by the negligence of the biker.

    The business owners have proposed other paths thru Ballard only to be ignored by the Mayor and the city. The Maritime industry brings in hundreds of millions of $$$ each year to Seattle. A bike trail brings in a couple thousand extra to 7-11 at the Locks. Does it really take a genius to figure out the equations of trucks to bikes and Industry money+good-paying jobs to Slurpees?

    Absolutely build the trail, just please consider the livihood of the business community and the saefty of the trail users. Choose a better path and stop whinning about any other path having too many stop lights or stop signs or other interuptions. It is a city, get used to it. If you want to ride without stops or traffic, move to Wyoming and buy a mountain bike.

  • 29 Think Logically // Jun 11, 2009 at 7:14 am

    This is a simple but very possible scenario…

    Ballard Oil fuels the ships of the Maritime industry. Little Sally rides her bike along the trial. Little Sally does not pay attention and rides under a Ballard Oil truck as it is making a legal left turn accross the trail. The police report says it's her parent's fault that she dies – They were not paying attention because they were on their cell phone. Since Warren is a business owner, he gets sued anyways because Sally's parents can't seem to be able to take responsibility for thier bad parenting. Since Warren gets sued, his insurance company drops him, even before the judge throws out the case. Warren can't get insurance. Warren goes out of business. The other fuel companies on the canal also take a huge increase in insurance because the accident was so close to them. They then cannot afford to stay in business and there is no way to fuel the fleet before they head to Alaska. No Fuel = No ships. No ships = No Maritime industry & Sally is still dead.

    Do you need further explanation?

  • 30 Dan // Jun 11, 2009 at 2:00 pm

    I'm a daily bike commuter, and I can see why the businesses are having trouble with this. As in most industrial areas, these businesses use the road as part of their collective “yard.” Trucks, customers, and product move back and forth, in and out, with the road as a shared access point. Its use as a throughway is a distant second priority. But I disagree with their position because the road does not belong to them any more than it belongs to me. This project will certainly have its impacts on them, some real (parking, material movement) and some made up by lawyers (impacts on air quality? by adding bicycles to an industrial district?). But the fact is they have to “share the road” with the rest of the community, and it seems it's simply been a long time since they thought about that. I hope they figure out how to adapt and go forward.

  • 31 eric // Jun 11, 2009 at 2:18 pm

    yeah, they have trouble with it because they DO think the road is theirs' imo….

  • 32 Silver // Jun 11, 2009 at 2:21 pm

    A big “Thank you!” to the above posters for their well-written, calm and polite discourse. I learned some things, and what's more, I felt like a conversation was happening.

    Thank you for being respectful of each other and differing opinions!

  • 33 jules // Jun 11, 2009 at 2:27 pm

    awesome! it is about time:)……

  • 34 foo // Jun 11, 2009 at 2:45 pm

    Love how the folks in the article say bike commuters won't use the trail, but in the comments here are all sorts of bike commuters saying they'll use it. :)

  • 35 Dave0 // Jun 11, 2009 at 3:43 pm

    Would you say this scenario is more likely or less likely to happen with a bike trail in place? I'd say it's less likely to happen if there is a curb, off-street trail for bikers to ride on.

  • 36 eve plumb // Jun 11, 2009 at 3:47 pm

    not only will tons of commuters use it (like myself, this time with my glasses on!), but it will be lots safer.

    those salmon bay gravel trucks come within 18″ of me now while riding past their facility. how could things get any worse?

    if I still used fossil fuels, I would boycott Ballard Oil.

  • 37 MichaelSnyder // Jun 11, 2009 at 3:48 pm

    Well, that wouldn't happen because Warren has promised to shut his business down on the day that this trail opens because he doesn't want to risk his drivers killing anyone.

    I was pretty sure that there is at least one other oil company serving the Maritime industry. Otherwise, Warren must be making money hand over fist because he has a monopoly.

  • 38 MichaelSnyder // Jun 11, 2009 at 4:06 pm

    From traffic counts that I've done, I'd estimate that this bike trail will immediately take 300 cars a day off of the road and that in a few years it could easily take as much as 1200 cars off of the road.

    This reduces traffic congestion, making it easier for Ballard Oil and Salmon Bay Sand and Gravel to make their deliveries, and making it easier for everyone else who drives.

    This increases the calories burned, improves appetites, and gives more business to the restaurants in Ballard.

    This reduces gas purchased, and oil money sent to the Middle East, leaving it in our local economy.

    For me, it was $5000/year. $5,000 * 200 = at least $1 million more dollars added to our local economy per year. AAA says our car ownership costs are a lot higher than my $5000/year savings, so the impact might be a lot greater.

  • 39 Archibald // Jun 11, 2009 at 4:56 pm

    Does anyone know why they are not planning on building the portion on the trail that eventually will become part of Shilshoe and instead incorporating an interim signed bike route on Ballard Ave? Why not just do the whole thing at once? Just a

  • 40 Kat // Jun 11, 2009 at 5:19 pm

    On this point, that the bikers won't use it, there was recently a forum post about biking and I asked about bike lanes and why so many bikers don't use them and all the people who responded said that they really didn't use the bike lanes because they were more dangerous then riding in the street (something about doors popping open and hitting them). Maybe the folks in this article understand this view. Why is this path any different? I don't see how a lane is going to add viability or safety. Can someone please explain?

  • 41 Cycling commuter // Jun 11, 2009 at 5:19 pm

    This is the scenario businesses always put forward, and it reminds me of the mythical “People could get killed by people jumping off the Aurora Bridge” problem.

    When has this ever happened?

    Cyclists get killed in Seattle every year, and I can't recall ever hearing of a driver even being charged with anything. The only lawsuit I can recall is the one where the guy sued the city for a storm drain cover that grabbed his wheel and caused him to crash, resulting in brain damage.

  • 42 kurisu // Jun 11, 2009 at 5:46 pm

    It was a compromise to appease Salmon Bay Sand and Gravel…and they still sued!

  • 43 Silver // Jun 11, 2009 at 5:53 pm

    Kat – Riding bike lanes is a very different experience than riding on the trail. Most of the BG trail is fabulous!

    I think you'd need to see the current conditions on the missing link – the specific area that is being addressed in this case. It's full of hazards and very poorly marked. The rest of the Burke-Gilman Trail is blissfully safe and easy to negotiate compared to the missing link.

    If the link is finished anywhere near as well as the rest of the trail, it will finally be a safe and fun place to ride. It makes a big difference!

  • 44 Dusty // Jun 11, 2009 at 6:24 pm

    Bah! Who wants a designated trail separating bikes and cars when I can currently pedal 8mph down Shilshole blocking traffic.

    These businesses should be careful with what they ask for. They might get their own Ballard Critical Mass occurring daily.

  • 45 Archibald // Jun 11, 2009 at 6:33 pm

    Speaking of Salmon Bay, those dudes drive their trucks FAST,without looking across the trail by their Fremont location (at least the driver working at 5:20 last night did) . Everyone has their careless moments, but ,makes me wonder what kind of traing these guys get, or what their company culture is feeding them about cyclists and safety (or lack thereof).

    I would like to see the Industrial corridor in Fremont and Ballard stay intact. But we all have to find a way to coexist. Residential and retail will continue to encroach as the population rises. Nothing to be done about that now. The train left the station on that some time ago.

  • 46 Born right the first time // Jun 11, 2009 at 7:36 pm

    I just hope that no one turns around and sues what you like to call “special interests” and what I like to call the heavy industry businesses that have been in the area for many years

    (remember when this country made lots of things and now we seem to just consume, consume, consume..that is source of much of our countries financial woes you know…but I digress)

    Anyway, I am all for the bike trail, I ride on it myself sometimes….
    I just hope no one turns around and sues when some one gets hurt ( be it the bicyclist's fault -because they are not paying attention, I see that all the time-or the giant truck's or train-because they can't always see as well and, they too may not be paying attention .
    I suppose since it will be such an astronomical amount of money the businesses will have to pay for liability insurance now because of these added potential for accidents, maybe that will put them out of business and we can just build condos along the water instead and not have to worry about those pesky trucks and trains.
    I wish there was a more fair solution to all this.

  • 47 Kate // Jun 11, 2009 at 7:53 pm

    So great! That stretch is the most terrible part (both in aesthetics and danger) of using the Burke, I can't wait! I too have had a nasty crash on my bike on those train tracks beneath the bridge and have nearly broken my ankle running on that uneven gravel. Yea!

  • 48 Born right the first time // Jun 11, 2009 at 7:57 pm

    Not sure that road was really, really used for commuting till the cyclists found it to be such a great route.

  • 49 Born right the first time // Jun 11, 2009 at 7:58 pm

    Well put!

  • 50 Born right the first time // Jun 11, 2009 at 8:00 pm

    well put!

  • 51 motorrad // Jun 11, 2009 at 8:01 pm

    Think Logically,
    Why the attitude in response to my sincere inquiry? Are you just guessing or are the collision and insurance issues really the issue. I was hoping for a non-pompous answer from people with actual knowledge. If I misread the “Do you need further explanation?” comment I am sorry. The truth is that getting bike traffic to be on one path rather than the randomness that happens now is much better for drivers. Traffic of all kinds will move faster and smoother with less risk of incident. Other cities have already been through this. Ballard Oil can be sued no matter where their trucks are involved in a collision. That argument seems like a ruse to cover what the real issue is. Look deeper for the real answer. I just don't see that many Ballard Oil trucks to warrant this as the END of the maritime industry! Really? Quote you source that the Ballard maritime industry brings “in hundreds of millions of $$$ each year. I regret the loss of the industrial areas and the gentrification. I was really disappointed when Fred Meyer went in. So I am not wanting industry pushed out. But industry behavior in this case is shameful.

  • 52 motorrad // Jun 11, 2009 at 8:22 pm

    Ridiculous. The truck-bike collision argument is so lame. It is NOT better to have bikes on the road with Salmon Bay G & S trucks careening by bikes at the end of their handlebars. It is not better to have bikes screwing up traffic by being excruciatingly slow on a too thin road. It is NOT better to have bikes pulling out at intersections or crossing between intersections further disrupting traffic. This is one case where segregation is best. Hopefully driveways where industry wants their trucks to race out into traffic will be marked, giving bikers a warning. And these possible law suits you want us to structure lives around can occur anywhere. Not just at the bike path intersects. As a car driver it can't happen soon enough for me. As a casual biker, it will be nice.

  • 53 Jeff // Jun 11, 2009 at 9:28 pm

    Is that map correct, that the actual designated trail will be on Ballard Ave for a stretch, and will require that you cross Shilshole Ave. twice at 17th and at Vernon?

    I don't understand how that is safer than just running the whole trail down the Southside, waterside, of Shilshole Ave.

  • 54 jules // Jun 11, 2009 at 10:07 pm

    archibald: you are not nadine, by any cool chance, are you?

  • 55 gurple // Jun 11, 2009 at 10:32 pm

    The Critical Mass types — like bicyclists who disobey traffic laws — are a small proportion of all bike riders, but they give us all a bad name and keep the debate polarized. Cascade Bike Club has shown that bicyclists are finally becoming a big enough segment of the population that we can be represented effectively by non-extremist organizations.

  • 56 kurisu // Jun 11, 2009 at 11:06 pm

    There will be traffic signals! No more confusion by the Ballard bridge.

  • 57 Ballard Biz Owner // Jun 12, 2009 at 12:36 am

    Well, for me personally, my loading dock will be demolished to make way for the bike trail……eventually, when an insurance representative inspects our new configuration, I have no doubt my “on premises” (as I call it) will be increased. It is okay to most of you, though, my business is “not sexy” and only employs a dozen people. It is another nudge toward moving out of Seattle.

  • 58 motorrad // Jun 12, 2009 at 1:02 am

    Thanks for adding your firsthand info. It sucks that change always comes at someone's expense. There are so many positives with this path, it does suck that some are being put out. I hope the dock can be relocated without issue when all is said and done.

  • 59 lyl // Jun 12, 2009 at 1:38 am

    Just another coffin in the nail for Ballard. Yeah, you spandex yuppies who do not ever do real WORK for a living look down your noses at industry. There will be nothing but condos on the waterfront in not too many more years. No more local businesses except for all your pizza parlors. It's a pity there is no respect for those local people who have been working in Ballard for generations. Money always wins. Workers always lose.

  • 60 BB // Jun 12, 2009 at 5:16 am

    Thanks to all for keeping this relatively civil (the most egregious comments from yesterday were quickly expunged by the Geeky Swedes – thanks – but so was my original post, which was not nasty!!)

    Avoiding the areas near Salmon Bay S & G was meant to be a compromise to avoid the busiest sections, but as another poster noted, their representatives are still the major players fighting this (including George Griffin, of fight-the-plastic-bag-ban fame, among others). As other posters have also pointed out, many of the businesses along here, including SBSG, use the right of way for marshaling, loading, etc. For me, that makes such vehement and unrelenting opposition even more galling — 100 yrs of use of the public right of way for business parking, etc., and when the public decides to use 20 feet of the 100 foot width, not even in front of SBSG, they fight it tooth and nail….you throw in a 30 yr franchise for the Ballard Terminal RR, for free, and you've got yourself a pretty good deal using public right of way.

    Having said that, I do not want SBSG, Ballard Oil or any of Ballard's great businesses to go, and I do not believe this project will lead to that. In fact, I think the opposite could have been true — if those business owners had embraced this, as in Vancouver (ever been down to Granville Island and see the Ocean Concrete plant, smack dab in the middle of one of the most visited sites in BC?), trail design, safety issues, and improvements to business access could have been further enhanced. As it stands now, hundreds of cyclists and walkers have been injured due to unsafe conditions on these rights of way — this isn't future injury or harm, this is now. Building this further section of trail will save hundreds of people from harm in the future.

    I live, walk, drive, bicycle, shop, love Ballard. This has been over 15 yrs in the making, and it's time to make it happen.

  • 61 crownpill // Jun 12, 2009 at 7:09 am

    Well put, BB! I'm a casualty of the “gap,” taking some serious licks (i.e., chronic neck pain) after dumping my bike on the tracks to avoid a car. Never made sense to me how a bike trail on a public right of way had such little protection. It's not industry's road, it's the City's. I'm not saying a safe bike path and industry can't exist, but rather that private enterprise shouldn't have dominion over a public space.

  • 62 Cycling commuter // Jun 12, 2009 at 3:17 pm

    Something else will move in.

    Change is inevitable, and someone always gets the short end of the stick.

  • 63 Silver // Jun 12, 2009 at 4:44 pm

    BB – I'd vote for you!

  • 64 Ballard Biz Owner // Jun 12, 2009 at 9:01 pm

    Well the jobs that I provide, the money that I donate, and the services that I provide will move elsewhere to. This is the age of narrow self interests. I really hope someday, you will have something like this rammed down your throat. The study that the city commissioned was not even considered, in the end. The parking on Ballard Avenue is already scarce. As of now, the people exiting the building near the Bridge on 45th St will be dumping through that already congested little area.

    I understand that change is inevitable, but usually the change represents progress. This stretch of 45th was neglected and looked like a road from Tiajuana 15 years ago. We couldn't get the city to fill in the pot holes……heck, some of it was dirt road then. Instead of watching bicyclists wreck daily, as I get to now……I watched motorists “bottom out” and damage their cars as they sped to avoid 46th.

    I have witnessed the worst of people due to this mess on this street. The mean spirited, self righteousness of some, the ineptitude of government, the battle to survive of business owners, and the utter stupidity of it all.

    This entire thing is a joke and a farce.

  • 65 bilsemon // Jun 12, 2009 at 10:04 pm

    She is a BIG opponent of anything that slows the Interbay trucks down. She fought against a light at 3rd NW and Leary because that would slow down the freight traffic even though that was a very busy intersection w/a bus stop where people need to cross Leary. The city even REMOVED a crosswalk at that intersection forcing peds to walk to Leary & 39th and back to 3rd in order to cross safely. Many peds just risk it and cross there w/o a light and w/o a crosswalk.

  • 66 SaltyRod // Jun 13, 2009 at 12:56 am

    What he said… Bikers = Childish egocentric name callers.

  • 67 motorrad // Jun 13, 2009 at 2:26 am

    This ridiculousness has had me chuckling for days. You would think they were claiming your properties by eminent domain and laying out a 6 lane interstate. I give up trying to be sympathetic. Tee Hee.

  • 68 bb // Jun 13, 2009 at 2:29 am

    Ballard Biz Owner –
    Based on what you've seen of the plans for improvements to this street, won't this help the local businesses? Better sight lines for seeing roadway users, better pavement and drainage, perhaps better driveway access? I don't you think you can just wish that other users will go away — they won't and can't.
    We've got to learn to share the built environment we've got —

    Yes, some bikers are childish and egocentric — some are namecallers — let's ignore them SaltyRod.

  • 69 Ajay Deluxe // Jun 13, 2009 at 4:42 am

    I'm really more worried about being run over by an inattentive truck driver than having a bike path “rammed down my throat”.

    And yes, maybe you'll take your business and its economic impact somewhere else, and I have no doubt that someone else will occupy your vacated space and….provide jobs, donate money and offer services. Supposing all that happens and we have both a bike path and a company that does all of those things better than yours? That would be progress.

    And if we ended up with “just” a bike path and someone who added no more than you: that would also be progress. Some had the space before you, and someone will have it afterwards and chances are, things will improve.

  • 70 bilsemon // Jun 13, 2009 at 5:20 am

    Here's a little reading for you: http://cityofseattle.org/transportation/docs/FM

  • 71 SaltyRod // Jun 13, 2009 at 2:43 pm

    The irony isn't lost on me either motorrad. Here is a special interest group of whiny brats who claim that they are not special, but need special lanes and paths to ride on. They contribute nothing. Want a new path just for you to ride your not special spandex 5000? Pay for it. Use tax is the most fair right? Pay for yearly bike tabs, take the riding test, pay for your bike license. My guess is that you are too special to support such a idea. Give and take. Ballard small business gives, and gives, you take.

  • 72 SaltyRod // Jun 13, 2009 at 2:59 pm

    Yeah it's fine as long as you don't get the short end, your just too special !!! Look at Cycling Commuter SOOOO SPECIAL !!! YAY YAY !!!!!!!

  • 73 BB // Jun 13, 2009 at 4:10 pm

    This continued fighting is SO Un-Scandinavian. . . . . let's be like Trondheim Norway, shall we?
    http://www.virgin-vacations.com/site_vv/11-most

    And mixing industrial businesses with bicycles, walkers, tourists? Anyone ever been to Granville Island, where the local cement company embraces it's proximity to all those people. . . . . .
    http://www.seegranvilleisland.com/oceancement/o

    No one 'wins' and no one 'loses' with this Hearing Examiner decision. We all benefit.

  • 74 Vagrant // Jun 13, 2009 at 4:17 pm

    Ahhh, working class left vs. green left. Always a fun fight watching the yuppie left screw the working man.

  • 75 Ballard Biz Owner // Jun 13, 2009 at 4:21 pm

    Someone had that space before me, huh??? IS that a guess or fact??? the fact of it is that it is an ignorant statement. It was an abandoned, burned out structure, along the lines of the abandoned “meth house” behind Sip and Ship.

    I pushed for the stretch on 45th to be made a one way street. That would have allocated a separate lane for cyclists and one for motorists. Utilities would not have to be relocated, the train tracks could be avoided, etc………..a city representative asked me if I could simply renovate my building and install an elevator lift and move our fabrication shop to the second floor……after asking him if he ever had a job in the private sector (the answer was no); I explained that all of those things cost money, a lot of money, and that in private biz that is an obstacle.

    After reading the ignorant ramblings of your post; I think you could be him.

  • 76 Ajay Deluxe // Jun 14, 2009 at 2:04 am

    Before it was burned out and abandoned, it was something else. I'm sure that guy also thought he was an irreplaceable asset to the community, but time marches on, and businesses and neighborhoods change, to the benefit of some and the detriment of others. And organizations that get outmaneuvered politically, well they take their lumps like everyone who doesn't understand that it's a dog-eat-dog world, 24-7.

  • 77 BB // Jun 14, 2009 at 2:58 pm

    Thank you Ballard Biz Owner, for pushing for the one way — the City totally screwed up when it agreed, apparently because of the wishes of OTHER ballard biz owners, to keep two way on NW 45th. Not a fatal flaw in the design, but it sure makes it a more complicated project.

    Did you try to convince your fellow business owners?

  • 78 motorrad // Jun 14, 2009 at 7:14 pm

    Wow. Nice post. Again, it is NOT a 6 lane highway with government seizure of land. The businesses that are against development and this bike path should let it go and admit they blew it and dropped the ball years ago when they failed to keep Fred Meyer out. And again when they let the monstrosity of Ballard Blocks take 'industry' land to service the Sushi crowd. You blew it then and this ridiculous fight against the bike path will not bring back the old Ballard that many of us miss. You screwed up and this fight against the bike path only makes you look small and alienates people who may be valuable to your needs in the future. This fight will not get your dignity back and has put some potential allies out of reach for future battles.

  • 79 BallardBizOWner // Jun 23, 2009 at 6:53 pm

    Ajay….Ooooooh, my…I bet you are a BIG DOG!!! lol

    This trail is and will be a joke. I would be willing to wager that the “serious cyclist: won't use the path on Shilshole or Ballard Ave…..they will ride down the street as most presently do.

    When taxes in Seattle need to be raised again, services are lacking, etc……remember that you do have a nice trail, and in doing so compromised a small part of the City's tax base.

    The City's rep explained to me that 46th would need to be made a one way in the opposite direct ion of 45th; if 45th were to be made a one way street. Something about the City regs……laughable reasoning given the process the City took to run the trail through its current location. Most of the others on 45th were agreeable to the one way street idea………….

    Sometimes I need to remember that those people who were in the lower 90 percentile when I was in school are the majority of the people……….thus the stupidity of the world!

  • 80 xxjpxx // Aug 10, 2009 at 3:05 am

    ag. just came from the ER with 3 stitches on my chin b/c my front bike slid on the railroad tracks. glad to hear this is moving on.

  • 81 adamantra // Nov 4, 2009 at 10:14 pm

    The Business owners have a right to oppose the specifics of this plan. However, the lawsuits, the presumptuous claims involved with them, and even the comments I'm reading here are way out of line. To oppose the completion of the “missing link” in general is seriously stupid. Look: this city is decidedly pro-bicycle, the trail is completed all the way up to golden gardens, and the only thing standing in its way are a few concerned businesses. It just stands to reason that this public right of way should be built. We have elected officials and urban planners on the payroll to make decisions on how to use public land. Hearings haven't gone the way of the pleas of Ballard businesses. Ultimately, a public trail has more legal rights than industry so long as the trail doesn't completely interrupt the ability to make money on the land. This is why lawyers arguing against the trail are trying to make a case that business would be forced to close. The important fact is that this was already reviewed and found to be erroneous. Sure, it might make their job more difficult, but the city never promised the use of public land (which enables the free movement of materials etc.) in perpetuity. The access to the property will remain (minus an interruption for construction), the access to the water will never change, and the property rights of the businesses will be intact and unharmed.

  • 82 donaldsimpson // Mar 22, 2010 at 4:06 am

    To run the tra il on Ballard Ave. in front of Ballard Sheet Metal and Ballard Hardware is the most dangerest of all options . They have dozens of trucks every day. Someone will be killed. Move up to Leary Way and don't be so dumb. There are no trucks on Leary until you get to Carter Motors . Does anyone look at these sites first? I would suggest moving the bikes to the canal.

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