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Capitol Hill weekend traffic report: Ride Free funeral, ‘unknown number of bicyclists’

In which we seem to have made a regular Friday morning practice of reducing surely significant events into notices about traffic irritations. You’ve been warned.

  • Friday afternoon downtown traffic mayhem — via SDOT:

Friday afternoon between 3:30 and 5:30, there’ll be a “Funeral March for the Ride Free Area” mourning the end of free bus rides in downtown Seattle. While the marchers will remain on the Third Avenue sidewalks between Westlake Park and the County Courthouse, traffic could, nevertheless, be impacted. About the same time, an unknown number of bicyclists, taking part in the local extension of an international bike blockade called “Super Swarm,” will attempt to hinder traffic as they make their way from Pioneer Square to Westlake Park. 

Friday, September 28

Funeral March for the Ride Free Area:  3:30 – 5:30 p.m.
Starts at Westlake Park – Fourth and Pine Street
50 participants

Starts at fourth and Pine and marches on the sidewalk on Pine to Third Avenue, south on Third Avenue to the County Courthouse at James Street, then retraces the march back to Westlake Park.  March could cause disruptions to traffic when participants cross at intersections. 

Super Swarm:   3 – 5:30 p.m. or later
Extension of international bicycle blockade
Unknown number of bicyclists

Bicyclists leave Occidental Park in Pioneer Square at 3 pm and travel north to Westlake Mall at 5:30 attempting to create traffic gridlock along the way. 

  • “Pay on entry” busmageddon — via Metro:

You’ve probably heard about all the Metro service  coming up at the end of the month—the end of the Ride Free Area in downtown Seattle, the start of “pay-on-entry” on all , two new RapidRide lines, and revisions to more than 50  routes.

We’re asking you, our customers, to alter many travel habits, so we want you to know why.

We’re revising service to make the best use of Metro’s resources—the public’s tax and fare dollars—to get more people where they want to go.

Giving you the most value for your transit dollar has always been important, and never more so than now. More and more people are riding our  as the economy gets stronger and our region grows. At the same time, Metro continues to face a funding shortfall that threatens our ability to meet the demand.

So we’re making sure we’re providing service where it’s needed most. We’re restructuring routes to reduce duplication, make service more direct, and give riders better connections to fast, frequent RapidRide lines and to popular destinations.

We’re discontinuing some of our least productive routes and reinvesting the service hours in more heavily used routes to reduce overcrowding and help  arrive on time.

And we’re making many smaller adjustments to improve service speed and reliability.

Many of these  are possible now because Metro has new service guidelines, approved last year by the County Council, that emphasize efficiency and productivity.

As we  service over the next few weeks, there are bound to be a few glitches. We’ll be doing our best to make things go smoothly—and you can help:

  • Learn how your  service is changing and help others do the same by visiting our .
  • If the bus service you use now will change, use the trip planner to plan new ways to get where you want to go most frequently; be sure to enter a date after Sept. 29.
  • Let others know that starting Sept. 29, all riders will pay as they board the bus and there will be no free rides in downtown Seattle.
  • If you have friends or family members who don’t speak English well, help them prepare for changes that will affect them.

Thanks in advance for your patience and support while we make Metro a stronger  system that will serve you better.

Here’s what we had to say about the changes, by the way.

  • The streetcar work rumbles on — via SDOT:

·The intersection of Broadway and Union will be closed, with the exception of one northbound lane, the weekend of September 29thand 30th.

·Broadway will be closed between Madison and Marion from 8:00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m. for up to two weeks beginning September 27th. There will be a signed detour.

  • Montlake mess — via Sound Transit:

Montlake Blvd. September 28th weekend traffic impacts

Construction of the University of Washington Station pedestrian/bike bridge construction has started. In order to build the bridge the contractor will need to close traffic lanes and sidewalks on Montlake Blvd. (see traffic details below).

Friday, September 28 (7 p.m.) through Saturday, September 29, 2012 (2 a.m.)

Northbound on Montlake Blvd.

  • All lanes northbound on Montlake Blvd. including the east sidewalk will be closed.
  • Northbound traffic must turn left on NE Pacific Street, right onto NE Pacific Place and turn left back onto Montlake Blvd. at the signal.
  • Pedestrians/Bicyclists must use the crosswalk and the west sidewalk between NE Pacific Street and NE Pacific Place.

Southbound on Montlake Blvd.

  • One southbound lane will be closed. 
  • The west sidewalk will be open between NE Pacific Street and NE Pacific Place.

Saturday, September 29 (2 a.m.) through Monday, October 1, 2012 (3 a.m.)

Northbound on Montlake Blvd.

  • All northbound lanes and the sidewalk will be closed between NE Pacific Street and NE Pacific Place.
  • Northbound traffic must turn left on NE Pacific Street, right onto NE Pacific Place and turn left back onto Montlake Blvd. at the signal.

Southbound on Montlake Blvd.

  • All southbound lanes and the sidewalk will be closed between NE Pacific Street and NE Pacific Place.
  • Southbound traffic must turn right on NE Pacific Place, left onto Brooklyn, left onto NE Boat Street, left onto 15th Avenue NE, right onto NE Pacific Street, back to Montlake Blvd. which merges with Montlake Blvd SB.
  • Southbound traffic follow posted detour route.
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9 years ago

Are those cyclists who participate in the “super swarm” trying to be be antagonistic, or are they just clueless? The stated goal was to cause traffice gridlock? My, oh my….talk about a great way to piss off motorists even further!

Seattle has made great strides, and spent alot of money, in catering to cyclists with miles of bike lanes and sharrows, yet some cyclists seem to want even more of….what? Most motorists want to share the road and be considerate of cyclists, but events like this are counterproductive to this kind of cooperation.