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Seattle cyclists push city for dedicated bike lanes across Fremont Bridge

A group is asking the Seattle Department of Transportation to add a two-way protected bike lane to the Fremont Bridge.

The Ballard-Fremont Greenways coalition says cyclists are having to make a difficult choice between two safety hazards along the Fremont Bridge. 

"Cyclists and pedestrians crossing the bridge are forced to share a narrow sidewalk that's barely six foot wide," said Bryant Mason, the coalition liaison.

The group wrote a letter asking the Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) to add a two-way protected bike lane, freeing up the sidewalk to allow for social distancing and creating a less congested option for bicyclists to ride across the bridge. 

"With the additional need to maintain a safe social distance, the constrained sidewalk places become even more hazardous for cyclists and pedestrians," said Mason. 

Mason said this is somewhat of a first-step fix to a city-wide issue.  

"This could be the Montlake Bridge or the Ballard Bridge, there are many other places around the city where you could potentially apply the same sort of solutions," said Mason. 

In response to the group's push for a bike lane across Fremont Bridge, SDOT spokesperson Ethan Bergerson sent KING 5 this statement: 

"Safety is our highest priority at SDOT. We are taking the concerns raised in this letter seriously, and are currently evaluating the request for a new protected bike lane on the bridge. Our review will assess how the bridge functions for all types of travel including bikes, cars, pedestrians and the numerous bus routes that travel over this bridge. We are also looking into what kind of surface treatment may be needed to support bicycling across the bridge deck. We intend to provide a formal response next couple of weeks."

Meanwhile, Mason said he's hoping the solution comes soon, as more people opt to go outdoors, once the smoke clears, and eventually head back to work. 

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