Changes for RapidRide coming to Aurora Avenue North

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by TERESA YUAN / KING 5 News

Bio | Email | Follow: @TeresaYuan

KING5.com

Posted on March 20, 2013 at 7:50 AM

Updated Wednesday, Mar 20 at 8:20 AM

SEATTLE -- Changes are coming to Aurora Avenue North in Seattle. Major construction breaks ground this summer to make way for King County Metro's new RapidRide E Line, which will connect Shoreline to downtown Seattle.

The Seattle Department of Transportation is partnering with King County Metro on the road improvements. SDOT is holding its first open house on the project Wednesday evening.

The RapidRide E Line will replace Metro Route 358. It's one of the busiest routes and has the largest ridership in King County’s transit system.

SDOT crews need to replace traffic signals and bus shelters, which will require work on sidewalks and curbs. In order to improve travel time and reliability, SDOT is considering some options.

One idea is to turn the right hand travel lane on Aurora Avenue North into a bus only lane from Winona Avenue to 115th Street. Another proposal in the southbound direction would make a bus only lane from 115th Street to 38th Street.   
SDOT says the bus only lanes are not set in stone.

“It's for business access and transit. If you're needing to make a right turn, you can still do that and then the transit will be restricted to primarily during the peak periods,” said SDOT’s Transportation Planner, Jonathan Dong.

Commuters have mixed reactions.

"It’s not going to help traffic at all. Rush hour, it’s always bad. It’s going to be a lot worse,” said Joel Steck.

"I would take the RapidRide bus. The way gas is going, it’s expensive,” said Casey Cathol.

Wednesday’s open house is at Bitter Lake Community Center, 13035 Linden Avenue North from 5:00 p.m. until 6:30 p.m.

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