Burke-Gilman: Good for Business?

The Burke-Gilman Missing Link has returned to the news over the last few weeks after several injured bicyclists filed a lawsuit against the City of Seattle.  Ironically, the city wants to fix the area and make it safer but has been hampered from doing so by another lawsuit from the Ballard Chamber of Commerce, Salmon Bay Sand & Gravel, Ballard Oil and the BINMIC Action Fund.  The next chapter of the Missing Link story begins Friday, March 5 in King County Superior Court.

You may have signed our petition to get the appellants to drop their case, but unfortunately that has not occurred.  The appellants have filed a flurry of legal briefs that make the same tired arguments about bike trails being incompatible with industrial areas.  In further irony, Salmon Bay is bankrolling the lawsuit, but chose to locate a facility where it stores its signature white and orange-striped trucks directly adjacent to the trail at Kvichak marina.

kvichak seattle - Google MapsAs one rides or walks from Ballard to Fremont along the trail, there are numerous places where trucks, bicyclists and pedestrians interact near industrial facilities.  There is even an asphalt plant with its tall profile next to the Ship Canal.  City Dept. of Transportation trucks can regularly be seen pulling in and out.  This plant is operated by Lakeside Industries (great photo on this blog), a family-owned local business that has won awards for its commitments to safety and the environment.  Lakeside also donated 40 acres of land near the Sammamish River Trail to Woodinville, doubling the amount of open space there.

Contrast this with Salmon Bay, which was recently fined $12,000 for environmental violations.