The city announced that the reconfiguration of N Northlake Way at Stone Way N now has a contractor and will get built this this fall. It’s a project I worked on with the WCC last year, so I have some attachment to it. It seemed like a straight win-win to us all.
From the City:
This project will construct the following changes at this intersection:
- A new sidewalk on the west side of Stone Way N, south of N 34th Street
- A new sidewalk on the south side of N Northlake Way at Waterway 22
- A new striped crosswalk on the west side of Stone Way N at N Northlake Way
- New curb ramps, compliant with Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) standards, on the west side of Stone Way N and on the south side of N Northlake Way
- A new right-turn only lane on southbound Stone Way N, north of N 34th Street
- The southbound lanes on Stone Way N, south of N 34th Street, will be reduced to one lane, while the two northbound lanes on Stone Way N, south of N 34th Street, will remain intact
These changes aim to improve the flow of bicycle, pedestrian, car and truck traffic that converges at this intersection. This project is funded by the Bridging the Gap (BTG) transportation levy, passed by voters in November 2006 and scheduled to expire at the end of this year.
You can learn more about the project background and impacts by visiting the project webpage at www.seattle.gov/transportation/Waterway22.htm
One question though: will the railing in front of Waterway 22 be removed? Will that area become more leisure friendly? Benches?
Just a point of curiosity: How do Wallyhood community members get from westbound Burke-Gilman to westbound 34th St at Stone Way, in order to cross the Fremont Bridge?
It seems like this connection would be necessary and important to anyone commuting to downtown from points east, but there is no clear “legal” way to do it, besides pretending to be a pedestrian and walking one’s bike through crosswalks, which is inefficient and awkward.
I have my own solution, but I’ve never seen anyone else doing what I do.
Classic case of the bicycle’s neither-fish-nor-fowl status. I don’t do it often enough to have worked out a routine, but I sure wouldn’t get off and walk.
I’ve had luck getting on Northlake from BG in advance of the northward bend. Bikes ARE vehicles and can get in the left-hand turn lane, assuming the bike lane on 34th after the intersection.
If people want to get OCD on the final plans they’re here:
Changes are limited to the roadway, any changes to the waterway would be a separate bureaucratic nightmare.
Another choice would be to jump on N Northlake Place from The BG trail. Stop and take a left on 34th merging into the main bike lane.
Thank you, Eric!!! I always worry about people walking along the area at Waterway 22 and cars barrelling around the curve there. This should fix it. Now, if we could get better marking on the Burke Gilman (so it’s safer for pedestrians–those bikes are scary fast!) and a light that changes automatically so you don’t have to press the button to get the WALK sign…
I bike across the crosswalks and then turn into the bike lane on Stone.
So, here’s what I do. On the walk signal, I bike half-way across Northlake, then stop and park myself at the front of the left turn lane. The very next light cycle is the left-turn light, so it works out pretty well.
Problems are: 1. I’m jumping into the front of the car line, which is just an invitation for some grumpy bike-hater to bolster their bike-hate.
2. If there is a lot of foot/bike traffic crossing Northlake with me, it’s pretty awkward to stop in the middle and turn my bike perpendicular. Usually, the cars are pulled right up to the crosswalk, so I’m essentially blocking part the crosswalk. Not ideal. (Yes, I wait until the last minute to face forward)
Maybe if we got one of those green bike zones painted at the front of the lane, like we see on 34th at Fremont Ave?
That whole intersection needs some serious bike infrastructure improvement.
I think the objections you mention would outweigh the benefit of that tactic, for me. If you take the crosswalks (all the way across), you can choose either clockwise or counter clockwise depending on where you are in the light cycle, so maybe not too long to wait. I don’t recall ever noticing any hostility from drivers behind me when I take the left turn lane from eastbound to Stone northbound, but then I take that lane position in the approved manner, at the end of the line.