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Major changes to plans for bike lanes across Seattle

A protected bike lane, with accompanying traffic signals, in downtown Seattle. (SDOT)

In the wake of the officials opting not to build a controversial protected bike lane on 35th Avenue NE, Seattle is considering an update to the city’s Bike Master Plan. The update either delays or cancels the bulk of the plan’s remaining projects.

RELATED: SDOT puts brakes on controversial 35th Ave bike lane
RELATED: When did Rob Johnson really know about bike lane opposition?

The Seattle Department of Transportation’s update to the city’s Bike Master Plan denotes the removal of 22 proposed bike lane projects, primarily under the label of “SBAB removed,” referring to the Seattle Bike Advisory Board.

According to SBAB member Patrick Taylor on Twitter, the Advisory Board “didn’t vote to remove, we just listed things as not a priority for this plan.”

A handful of other projects — mostly scheduled to be finished between 2020 and 2021 — no longer appear on the list altogether. Taylor also noted that a Beacon Avenue project was voted the highest priority by SBAB, but is no longer listed.

Many of the remaining bike lane projects are delayed under the update. That list includes:

  • Montlake Cut Phase of SR-520 Bridge Replacement and HOV Program: Delayed two years, adds a 14-foot-wide bike and pedestrian path across Lake Washington.
  • Accessible Mt. Baker: Delayed three years, adds walking and biking connections to the Mt. Baker area
  • Burke-Gilman Trail Missing Link: Delayed one year, 1.4 mile multi-use trail in northeast Seattle.
  • Center City Bike Network: Scaled back from 15-year project to two years, two-way protected bike lane from South Yesler Street to Pine Street.
  • Northgate Pedestrian and Bicycle Bridge: Delayed one year. Handful of bike and shared-use pedestrian paths in North Seattle.
  • RapidRide Expansion: Delayed one year, improvements to crossings, bike facilities, and neighborhood greenways.

Seattle City Council’s transportation committee will be briefed on the updated SDOT plan, and take public comments on Tuesday at 2 p.m.

A previous version of this story stated that SDOT is slashing its budget for bike lanes. SDOT officials say that draft plan calls for investing $76.8 million over six years, which is the same amount as previously with no reduction in budget.


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