News Blog for Seattle's University District Neighborhood


New Protected Bike Lane on Roosevelt is in the Works

January 26th, 2015 by master

Interim PBL in action south of 45th on Roosevelt Way NE

Changes are coming to Roosevelt Way NE. To bicycle riders, this comes as a relief, although to some motorist, there will definitely have to be some adjusting!

Hopefully, after letting go of lost parking spots, motorist will be able to appreciate this change that addresses major safety issues for bicyclists everyday. According to the Seattle Department of Transportation (SDoT) there has been 21 collisions involving people riding bikes over the past four years.

Right now, there is an interim Protected Bike Lane on Roosevelt Way between NE 45th Street and the north end of the University Bridge. If you are concerned, perplexed or interested in what this PBL might mean for your commute, here is some information you might find helpful.

What You Need To Know:

SDOT is repaving Roosevelt Way NE between Fuhrman Ave NE and NE 65th Street and adding safety improvements this fall 2015 to spring 2016.   In addition, they are adding a one-way protected bike lane (PBL) on the west side of Roosevelt Way NE, transit reliability improvements and pedestrian improvements.

What is a Protected Bike Lane (PBL)?

PBL’s physically separate people riding bikes from people driving and are distinct from the sidewalk, adding predictability for all travelers.

Images Courtesy of SDoT website

Why Do we Need or Want a PBL?

According SDoT, the goal of a PBL is to create a safer environment for bicyclists and pedestrians:

  • Safety for all travelers
    • People biking – separate bicyclists from travel lanes and parking maneuvers
    • People walking – separate bicycles from pedestrians
    • People driving – provide predictability within the street

They also add that their goal is to:

  • Improve safety, as people are no longer riding bikes in the “door zone”
  • Add connections to a citywide bicycle network and multimodal system at:
    • NE 47th Street, which connects people to the University Neighborhood Greenway
    • Ravenna Boulevard where SDOT is upgrading the buffered bike lane to a protected bike lane this year
    • NE 65th Street, where the new Link Light Rail Station is under construction
  • Improve transit reliability by adding in-lane bus stops (transit islands)
  • Create more space for people waiting for the bus by adding transit islands
Check out this Handy Animation from SDoT on how to park by a PBL:

Courtesy of SDoT

If you have some experiences with this new Bike Lane, we would love to hear about them in the comments below!

Happy and Safe Travels Out There!

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Weekend road work on Roosevelt Way and University Bridge

October 22nd, 2010 by master

SDOT will close part of Roosevelt Way on Saturday (10/23) from 7am to 3pm to do paving work. The street will be closed between NE Campus Parkway to the NE 40th Street on-ramp to the University Bridge. Traffic will be detoured at NE 42nd Street to Seventh Avenue NE, and back to the University Bridge. Traffic headed toward the UW campus will be able to turn onto NE Campus Parkway. The bike lane will be closed. Sidewalks will remain open.

SDOT crews will also be doing maintenance work on the University Bridge this Saturday and Sunday (10/23 and 10/24) from 9am to 3pm. One lane will remain open in each direction. Bike lanes and sidewalks will remain open.

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University Bridge lane closure Tue. and Wed.

July 19th, 2010 by master

SDOT will close the northbound right lane on the University Bridge from 9 am to 3 pm on both July 20 and 21.  Crews will be repairing a broken water line.

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Could a mural stop the graffiti under University Bridge?

June 17th, 2010 by master

Graffiti is a common sight under the University Bridge, especially in the area across from the “Wall of Death.”  The city tells us taggers hit the underbelly of the bridge just about every weekend.  Crews try to clean up the mess left behind once or twice a month but nothing seems to stop it.  One of our readers Robby (who took the picture above as crews cleaned up the bridge recently) asked if the city might consider putting up a mural to deter vandals.  We asked SDOT, and here’s the answer:

We have not considered installing a mural under the University Bridge.  Murals by themselves are not sufficient deterrents to graffiti and often end up tagged.  This area also has an art installation so we would need the consent of the city’s Office of Arts and Cultural Affairs before creating a mural.

SDOT also tells us that they work through the Department of Neighborhoods to facilitate mural requests submitted by private groups.  You’d need a permit for the mural and have to commit to maintaining the art work.

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