Missing link

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This topic contains 22 replies, has 9 voices, and was last updated by  Anonymous 5 years, 5 months ago.

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  • #80753

    Anonymous

    I started riding my bike to work recently and totally get the need for the missing link to be built. Riding down that stretch of Shilshole Avenue is unnerving. As vehicles approach from behind, I’m just hoping they see me and don’t happen to be texting or reaching for their coffee.

    To avoid that, I’ve started riding down Ballard Avenue. It’s fun to ride down there when the street’s still quiet and most of the businesses aren’t open yet.

    #80757

    VeganBiker
    Participant

    CR – thanks for bringing up this topic again! We need to have this fixed!
    Although SDOT has made a number of improvements along the “missing link” we really need to keep the pressure on to finally complete the BG Trail the way it was planned many years ago.
    I believe that the EIS should be finished next year and I really hope that that will be the end of the opposition to completing the trail.
    http://www.seattle.gov/transportation/BGT_Ballard.htm

    As you mentioned, Ballard Ave is a great way to avoid the Shilshole Ave. mess.
    Happy biking to you.

    #80761

    Edog
    Participant

    My intuition tells me this won’t be solved by the EIS. The missing link won’t be finished until the industrial contingent of Ballard, the City, and developers form a consensus on land use for the area east of 15th and south of Market. While I think there is a real issue here for the businesses immediately along the trail, I believe for many, they are against the path as its seen as a very real border to the protection of their enterprise.

    #80768

    VeganBiker
    Participant

    Edog – unfortunatly I think you are correct on this one. I am just an optimistic, romantic fool that likes to dream… I enjoy riding a loop from my house over to Fremont, cross the bridge and back on the Canal trail to the locks and then home, if the “missing link” was finished I would only be riding on the road from my house down/up 28th and a bit in Fremont!

    #80769

    Anonymous

    Do you mean west of 15th, Edog?

    A good friend of ours works for a business on Shilshole and is vehemently opposed to completing the missing link. I’m not sure I understand why. There are already a substantial number of cyclists who ride along Shilshole, so I’m not convinced that there would be a greater impact on businesses if the trail was completed. I’m open to hearing arguments from both sides, though.

    That’s a nice loop, VB, except that it involves crossing the Ballard Bridge.

    I’m really appreciating the Burke-Gilman lately. There’s no way I’d ride to work if my route was primarily in traffic.

    #80773

    Edog
    Participant

    Do you mean west of 15th, Edog?

    No, I mean east; its complicated. I understand the section of trail we are talking about is west of 15th, but I think the land people really want to access is to the east. If the businesses immediately next to the missing link west of 15th don’t have a historical protection, will anyone be able to oppose total rezoning and development of that area?

    #80774

    great idea
    Participant

    the whole missing link fiasco makes me very angry and sad all at once.

    I see more and more cars parked where the trail should be.
    at the same time, there are more people (like CR) who are discovering how wonderful the rest of the trail is.

    I have little faith it will ever be finished.

    btw, I don’t think VB crosses the Ballard Bridge CR– he mentioned going straight to the Locks.

    #80775

    Kate
    Participant

    I don’t find Shilshole that bad. It’s a fairly wide road. If I’m headed SE, I’m going downhill so I’m not holding up traffic too badly and there is almost no cross traffic or car doors to worry about. It’s easy to see the big trucks if they’re pulling out. If I’m headed NW, the verge is paved and I can stay there and be pretty much out of traffic altogether. What I hate is trying to get from 24th to the Locks. The side walk on the south side of Market is too small to share comfortably and if I use the road, I have to sit in the left lane with traffic to turn left, which is really scary and then left again by the Taco Time and left once more at the Locks, all while dodging buses and other traffic and watching car doors.

    #80776

    VeganBiker
    Participant

    CR – I don’t cross the Ballard Bridge on that loop, I just stay on the Canal trail and head over through the Fisherman’s Terminal to the Locks and walk back to Ballard via the Locks. So I guess I am on the road a bit between the Terminal and the Locks. I forgot because today I nipped down to the Animal Shelter and came back via 15th and the Ballard Bridge, just for a thrill!
    The Animal Shelter is going through a construction phase and all the dogs are at foster homes!

    #80779

    SEdholm
    Participant

    I can say, as a runner, they need to fix it. Shilshole is a turned ankle threat at every step. I live on 24th and use that trail most days for my training so I run to Market, then to Leary, right at the bridge passing Ross/LA Fitness to the light, down to Fred Meyer. It would be quite nice to run down my street and be able to just keep running. I have run Shilshole once or twice and I wont again

    #80787

    Anonymous

    VB, I didn’t realize you could get to Fisherman’s Terminal that way without going over the bridge. Good to know. The bridge is particularly bad for bikes, especially if you’re on the west side and heading south. There’s that stretch you have to cross with traffic coming from multiple directions. I’ve only done that once and it freaked me out.

    #80788

    Anonymous

    Kate, yes, Shilshole is pretty wide. Still, what scares me is knowing how many distracted drivers are on the roads. I can imagine being hit from behind from someone who was on their phone or otherwise not paying attention. As you can probably tell, I’m not at all comfortable riding in traffic.

    Edog, got it. And that’s a good question about rezoning and development of the area west of 15th. I read a PSBJ story a while back about a massive office development planned along that stretch (I think someone might have posted it here) but don’t know if any of that property is protected.

    #80792

    Marigold
    Participant

    Here’s the link to the office building to go in along Shilshole:

    http://www.bizjournals.com/seattle/blog/2014/04/uff-da-500-000-square-feet-of-office-space-planned.html?utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+bizj_seattle+%28Seattle+-+Puget+Sound+Business+Journal%29&page=all

    It’s a long one, just copy and paste…

    Zoning is already good to go, they just need to lease it up and then they’ll break ground. It will be interesting to see what happens to the missing link at that point. Isn’t it right along there? The fight could have deep corporate pockets to back up the plan to go forward then. Especially if it’s a tech company, they love them some bicycles.

    #80793

    VeganBiker
    Participant

    CR – yes it is a nice little ride, in fact I just did it again this afternoon. Just stay on the Canal Trail and it eventually goes under the Ballard Bridge then crosses some railway tracks and then a street that has a stop sign for users of the trail (16th Ave. West), cross that street and stay to the right, go under the ramp and take the first little trail on the right ( it is a bit hidden by some bushes) and that will drop you down into the Fisherman’s Terminal parking lot, go straight to the water and make a left and follow the road around to the far end of the terminal and the stay to your left and it will take you up onto W. Commodore Way and then keep on it to the locks.

    #80801

    Salmon Bay
    Participant

    Compass Rose’s experience underscores the desperate need to finish the Missing Link. It is a vital missing piece of transportation infrastructure. The Burke Gilman Trail coexists with industry along its entire length, including Salmon Bay Sand and Gravel’s facility in Fremont. There is absolutely no reason not to build it as it has been designed. It will be fully funded with the passing of the next Move Seattle transportation levy. SDOT has got to find a way to finish this route that the vast majority of the citizen’s of Seattle want built on the land owned by the citizens of Seattle.

    #80815

    VeganBiker
    Participant

    Salmon Bay – VERY well said! Thanks.

    #80817

    Mondoman
    Participant

    CR, VB:
    Yes, the City finally completed the “underpass” of the Ship Canal Trail at the south end of the Ballard Bridge few years ago. In my experience, W Commodore Way past the Fisherman’s Terminal has a lot of junk that can hole your tire, so I stay on W Emerson Pl (the road that runs from 15th past Fisherman’s Terminal to Gilman Ave W), and turn right just before the bridge over the railroad tracks, heading north on 23rd Ave W. I then hug the *north* side of the railroad track “ravine” on Gilman *Place* W until it finally runs into W Commodore Way. From there, after about a block, W Commodore Way becomes residential and has much less debris.

    #80821

    VeganBiker
    Participant

    Mondo – I hate to quibble about this but I just rode both of those routes in the last few days and there is not that much debris on Commodore Way, and today I noticed that Gilman Ave. West has become the latest camper parking spot so expect some new road debris there in the future.

    #80824

    Anonymous

    Good info, Mondo and VB, thanks. I’ve driven under the Ballard Bridge on the south end (where it loops around and takes you onto 15th headed south) but didn’t realize there was a way to get to Fishermen’s terminal under the bridge.

    So Gilman Ave. W is now a camper spot? I’ve noticed quite a few grocery carts and considerable garage along the Burke-Gilman around Fred Meyer (which must then be removed at taxpayer expense). Very annoying. Why do people think it’s okay to just toss their garbage around the streets? It’s not like there aren’t garbage bins around.

    #80833

    Mondoman
    Participant

    VB – you ride those areas more often that I do, so I defer to your recent observations! In the past, I’ve found Commodore to vary a lot in debris, but I tend to hug the street margins or go on the sidewalk, if present.

    Regarding the campers, are you thinking of Gilman Ave (not Place) W from roughly Dravus north westwards on up to past the bridge at W Emerson Pl? (This is the route to Discovery Park and the bone-shaker pedestrian bridge across the railroad) I’ve seen a number of campers parked on the east side of the road on that stretch.
    I haven’t seen many campers at all on Gilman **Place** W, but it’s been a while since I rode along there.

    It’s nice to have many route choices between 15th and the Locks on that side of the Ship Canal.

    CR – the “underpass” bike route is off to the right as you drive along the curve under the Ballard Bridge. On the east side, you get to it by riding down to the Ship Canal trail from Nickerson (just head for the Canal until you hit the trail — it’ll be obvious). The last road intersection before the bridge is with 13th Ave W, just turn on that for a short steep downhill stretch and you’ll see the Trail running both directions. It’s fenced in from there until the zigzag railroad crossing, then continues for a short distance to the ground-level streets. If you stay on the bike path, it runs by the Terminal’s big net sheds and connects to the sidewalk of W Emerson St as that comes down to ground level from the 15th Ave exit.

    #80836

    Anonymous

    Ah, thanks, Mondo! I couldn’t picture where it would be. That makes sense. Maybe I’ll try riding home from work that way sometime just to mix it up a bit.

    #80843

    VeganBiker
    Participant

    Mondoman – apologies, I did mean Gilman Place W. not Gilman Way W. and I rode that way about 3 weeks ago and there was maybe one camper type vehicle parked on the railroad side of the road but yesterday there were about 4-5 large motor homes and one 5th wheeler there! I know they move around because there used to be a few parked around W. Commodore way and 27th Ave. W. but those have gone for now.

    #80852

    Anonymous

    VB, I was driving over Ballard Bridge today and saw the bike path on the west side. I had no idea that was there before reading this thread. Very cool. I’ll have to try your loop.

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