As you may have noticed, crews have been busy painting the Ballard Bridge for a few weeks now. Lane closures have been consistent with the information given by the Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT), but bike commuters have lately been caught unaware when the sidewalk is also closed. This can cause major detour problems for bikers, as is written about on the Seattle Bike Blog. We contacted SDOT to get more specific information on how bikers can plan for their commute over the bridge.
Marybeth Turner from SDOT says the closure schedule for the southbound sidewalk is not the same as the closure schedule for the southbound lane. (Currently, the southbound lane is closed from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Tuesdays through Fridays and then again at night from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m. the following day, Monday through Thursday.) Turner says the contractor may close the southbound sidewalk at any time, including during morning commute periods. “Please advise your readers that currently they cannot expect the southbound sidewalk to be open at any time, and they should plan on taking an alternate route,” she writes. However, Turner says the contractor expects to be able to leave the southbound sidewalk open during the morning commute starting in May. “This is fortunate because as the weather improves, there will likely be more people out walking and bicycling. As that time approaches, we’ll provide an update,” she writes.