• Downtown Seattle bike lane construction permanently removes car lane on busy 2nd Avenue

    By: John Knicely


    SEATTLE - Construction started Monday in downtown Seattle on new protected bike lanes on Second Avenue between Blanchard and Pike streets. 

    One lane of traffic for cars is now permanently gone.  And reaction was quite mixed depending on which commuters KIRO 7 talked with.



    “It's really bad around here,” said Gerri Williams, who only drives twice a week because a 20-minute drive turns into an hour and a half for the afternoon commute home.  “This place is bad for traffic anyway, and there's bikes all over the place riding through traffic, stopping traffic. So it might be a good thing.”

    KIRO 7 morning anchor and reporter John Knicely will show drivers and cyclists what to expect during a live report in our 5 p.m. newscast.  >>http://kiro.tv/LiveNews

    This stretch of bike lane construction is expected to last two weeks. Then construction will start from Blanchard to Denny Way. The lane for cars taken away is now a permanent situation.

    Once completed, all of Second Avenue will match how it is further south downtown.  Next to the curb you have the protected bike lanes, then you have a lane for parking, and then you have traffic.

    It's funded by a $5 million federal grant and the voter-approved Move Seattle Levy. The change is welcome news to cyclists and some commuters.

    “It's great,” said cyclist Matt Sanford.  “I use the one all the way down Second.  It'll be nice not to have the narrow spots through here.”

    Drivers KIRO 7 spoke with aren’t greeting it with the same enthusiasm.

    “It's getting to the point where Seattle is almost anti-vehicle to me right now,” said Mike Lawrence.  “It's really sad.”

    Read more about the project on the Seattle Department of Transportation website.

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