• Cyclists complain new lane configurations put them in danger

    By: KIRO 7 News Staff

    Updated:

    SEATTLE - The Seattle Department of Transportation appeared to be making changes Saturday to a busy stretch of road in North Seattle.

    Those changes are happening in Seattle’s Wedgewood neighborhood where some cyclists have been complaining about new lane configurations they said are putting them in danger.

    According to the bike riders, the problem is the new dedicated turn lanes that are supposed to keep car traffic moving.

    Because bike lane plans were scrapped, cyclists share the road with cars.

    Cyclists have been recording video of drivers passing them illegally along 35th Avenue Northeast.

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    Many drivers have been caught on camera aggressively passing bicyclists in the dedicated turn lanes, which is illegal.

    Cyclists said it’s incredibly dangerous because drivers are cutting bikes off when they switch lanes.

    Some cyclists are calling a stretch of 35th Avenue the Durkan Speedway, naming after Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan. They say the city should either install bike lanes, or crack down on drivers who pass bikes, cars and even buses in the turn lanes.

    SDOT said it is a work in progress, but some say changes are needed now.

    A resident in the neighborhood told KIRO 7 there was no place for bicyclists to go.

    In response to the new lane configurations, SDOT crews have responded by making changes to the turn lanes by removing some of the turn lane striping.

    This week, crews will install bollards, the little flexible barriers, which will force people in the turn lanes to make a turn and not pass bikes.

    SDOT has promised to study the turn lanes and make adjustments to driver behavior.
     

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