Capitol Hill’s cycle track goes green — Are your Broadway bikeway wheels ready to roll?

A work crew was busy Saturday night “greening” Broadway’s new separated cycle track. The layer of methylmethacrylate is at its brightest creating a striking green path along the busy Capitol Hill boulevard. CHS’s most recent update on the Broadway bikeway — that will eventually run all the way north to an eventual First Hill streetcar terminus near Volunteer Park — is here. Other upgrades like a new traffic light at the E Howell crossing of Broadway are also being moved into place. The Seattle Department of Transportation hasn’t announced an official opening date for the first segment of the bikeway. Seems like the un-official opening is likely to have already happened.

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35 thoughts on “Capitol Hill’s cycle track goes green — Are your Broadway bikeway wheels ready to roll?

  1. I’m always surprised that city crews think it’s a good idea to do road work in the Pine/Pike area on Friday and Saturday nights. It’s those nights that have the most traffic and congestion.

    • As a resident, I admit I loved the temporary traffic calming that made the street so much more pleasant to walk through. I was sad we only have it during construction.

  2. I hope there will be police officers nearby to monitor and ticket drivers who now try and make illegal left turns (from Broadway to Pine, for example) blocking traffic behind them.

    But, I guess if they aren’t keeping a park safe that is one block from their precinct, asking them to monitor something going on 4 blocks away is too much to ask.

    • The only difference is traffic tickets make the city money, keeping parks safe for the neighborhood residents who pay taxes does not.

      How many times have you seen traffic cops quick to write a parking ticket after a car has been parked past the metered expiration. Yes the city can pay for those employees but heaven forbid we enforce laws like “no camping” or “no drug use”.

  3. The no left turn is new, and may catch people by surprise who are used to the old (and now departed) left turn lane. Not clear that forcing people to go a block further, turn on Pike and then return to Pine by any of the crowded little cross streets will do much for anyone ( other than getting people out of their cars, which works so well in cold drizzly January )

    Anyone know if bikes on the 2-way bike track will be able to turn left onto the Pine Street bike lane? I presume and hope so.

  4. I so cannot wait for a new mayor to be elected and all this wasteful spending on non-value added pet projects will go away.

      • There are many, many people that cannot find an ounce of value in this, and find this waste laughable. Cheer up.

    • Unfortunately now that it’s being built, the changes would cost too much to take out. I just hope they can at least complete the project and not have it end up abandoned for years like several bridges, roads, and other projects over the years.

    • This “pet project” came from the community. We demanded it and SDOT listened. Sorry you didn’t speak up sooner.

    • Wow, even Republican city council and mayors across the country are putting in bike lanes and cycle tracks and city-run bike rentals. When you find yourself more conservative than Michael Bloomberg and the Kansas City city council, maybe that’s a sign you need to move to a different place. At least Issaquah or further east.

      • Why are you judging this person to the point that you think they should move. Should we all think like you do or else move to a state or region that matches our opinion? Doesn’t that seem ridiculous? I like to think of Seattle as a place where people can express their opinion and then we all can all have a conversation about a particular issue.

      • Not to beat a dead horse, but these bike lanes were necessary in order to not have the bikes and the street car sharing space. It was a lesson learned the hard way from the SLUT. The street car is necessary because they weren’t able to feasibly put a light rail station under the hospitals as originally planned. This will help people from the South end get to the hospitals from the International District Station.

        I’ll be glad when Mayor McGinn is gone, but this has nothing to do with him at all. And this is a good thing. Especially if they can get the funding to take the street car and bike lanes up to Aloha.

  5. I now hope cyclists will use it and obey the traffic signals, as well as stay off the sidewalks. If they don’t, I hope the police will be there to hand out tickets.

    The city is spending a lot of money on this project, use it properly.

    • Riding bikes on the sidewalk is legal in Seattle, regardless of if there is a bike path, bike lane, or cycle track nearby.

      • Well, you can start eating. Most drivers stop. Many cyclists do not. Are you using the fact that a few drivers don’t stop to rationalize your behavior? Have you ever heard the old saying “two wrongs don’t make a right”?

  6. What a dumb idea. The crap this city comes up with is a joke. Of all the things we should be spending money on, instead we waste it on ridiculous things like this. Oh yah, and in the process, let’s make it even more difficult to drive and park in this city than it already is, just to satisfy the minority. And by the way, it’s ugly!

    • Hate to interrupt your petulant rant, but the funding also came from a tri-county measure, not from our city.

      And you’re right. We shouldn’t waste so much money satisfying the minority of people like you who want to drive to Capitol Hill. Please go shop in Renton or Northgate. I hear Three Guys isn’t bad for burgers.

      • That is fun, it’s FIVE guys, not THREE guys Eli, and just wait, it’s coming to Cap hill in a mixed use monolith near you. Just a matter of time. If you are going to make fun of neighborhoods that aren’t like the hill, you should at least get the names correct or look like a fool, unless of course, it was intentional because you’ve never been off the hill, and only read about the outlying areas on the interwebs. This made my day.

  7. The negative, ignorant comments here are amazing. These new bike lanes should be only the beginning of an expansive trend away from car culture. As usual the U.S is far behind European and other foreign countries in dealing with the car epidemic. Cities are for pedestrians, which provides a sense of community. The introduction of the automobile all but destroyed that in America. Finally we are figuring this out.

  8. I’m curious as to what others think of the green in general for bikes. I find the message confusing because in our culture “green means go”. But beyond that I’m more concerned about the visual. While I don’t really like the green boxes, though they do look better when they get dirty, the problem I have is that unless it’s light outside the contrast is so low. On dark and rainy nights like we have a good portion of our time, or even simply dark, I find the contrast to be too low to be meaningful. It seems to me that some sort of white paint pattern of some type might have been a better visual approach.

    • the green “paint” is a standard design spec from the American Association of State Highway Transportation Officials (AASHSTO) Guide for the Development of Bicycle Facilities. It’s the result of a lot of research done be transportation engineers and planners – it is not the result of an exterior paint designer at City Hall.

      On a side – I am amazed at the comments in this thread – are you people just bored and need something to complain about? I guess it should be expected since most people do not understand how much their car ownership is subsidized – hopefully someday Americans will be less ignorant about civic projects and how they are funded – till then – drive on.

  9. I too am skeptical about this bike lane project, because it means that vehicles will have to share one lane with the streetcars, which will not be able to pull over and get out of the way when they stop to load/unload, as the buses are able to do now. I predict some serious backups and angry/frustrated motorists, but I hope to be proven wrong.

    However, this really is an urban experiment and deserves a chance. Only when it is fully operational will we know if it is a success, or not. Stay tuned.

    • I hope that the motorists will remember that everyone in those streetcars and on those buses also have to stop every time the vehicles pull over (even when it’s not their stop) – that we are all in this together. We all pay for the roads through taxes.

      • The trend in the city is to make it so buses don’t pull out of traffic anymore too. So get used to it. If you’ve driven up Pike or Pine lately you’ll notice that you can no longer legally pass a bus that is picking up passengers due to the new bubbles. This is a good thing because cars were not yielding to buses to let them back in to traffic as is required by law. Making it easier for people in cars to drive around the city should be the absolutely lowest priority. If you don’t like it get a bike or an orca pass or move to Calfornia.

  10. It’s all going to take some getting used to, or avoiding as need be. We’ll all manage. If I were a cyclist I would be wearing a high visibility vest like construction and road workers do. It would help drivers, especially on dark and rainy nights see me (and you).

  11. I’ll take any bets that in a year this project will be so popular that we’ll start to see similar projects pop up all over Seattle. If in a year I’m wrong, I’ll support any highway expansion or transit cut in the future. If I’m right, anyone who bets against me will have to support every new bike infrastructure project or transit expansion. Some people will undoubtedly hate this cycletrack with a passion, but the overwhelming majority will support it and people will use it in droves.

    Driving your car on the busiest, most pedestrian-utilized street, in the densest neighborhood in the city is not SUPPOSED to be easy. And parking it is not SUPPOSED to be easy (or cheap for that matter). So get with the times and bring the old Schwinn Varsity out of retirement…

    • I don’t have time nor the desire to pull the schwinn out. I will however use 10, 11th, and the streets west of Broadway to get where I need to go. They will become thoroughfares, check out the side streets of Dexter since it became all jacked up with bus islands and one lane each way and then place your bets. I do know that I won’t be using Broadway to get north and south but the side streets from now on. Easy Cheezy.

  12. Pingback: First ride on the Broadway bikeway | CHS Capitol Hill Seattle