West Seattle scenes: Bike to Work Day 2012

May 18, 2012 at 7:22 am | In Transportation, West Seattle news | 25 Comments

7:22 AM: Till 9 am, there’s a “commute station” on the west end of the low bridge, with Alki Bike and Board on hand (among others). Thanks to Shannon for the top photo; we’re on our way to check it out, along with new White Center B2W Day participants Caffé Delia and Dubsea Coffee, all with treats and more till 9.

(WSB photo by Patrick Sand, added 8:44 am)
ADDED 7:28 AM: Don Brubeck, a WS bicycle commuter whose photos have often appeared here, just called in from the station by the bridge. He told us, “Lots of bikers are going by; people are stopping at the Alki Bike and Board stop and getting their tires pumped up” – about 11 riders are there right now, and about half a dozen staffing the station. It’s cloudy, but no drizzle. We also talked for a moment to ABB’s Stu Hennessey, who says it’s been busy!

ADDED 9:04 AM: After finishing his bike commute, Don shared that shot from the road – actually, the bike/pedestrian path on the low bridge. His report (with a promise of a few more pix later):

Stu and Louie from Alki Bike and Board were helping people with air in tires, lube on chains, free tubes, and in one attached picture [below], Stu and Monica from SDOT’s bike program group were giving route advice to someone who wanted to know the best route to ride to Burien for her ride this morning.

Matt Johnson and Long Vo from BECU were there with schwag for riders and snagging potential customers. Matt is a West Seattleite.

Rob and Ray, who work at Nuun electrolyte drink company in the I.D., were giving out samples. They ride from West Seattle at least some of the time.

Car traffic was lighter than usual on the low level bridge. Could it be due to more people on bikes instead? Or, just Friday?


Our crew stopped at Caffé Delia in downtown WC – photos are on our partner site White Center Now.

25 Comments

  1. It’s unfortunate (but more typical) that the weather isn’t better – but thank you Stu, ABB and all those helping make the commute easier!

    Comment by gene — 7:48 am May 18, 2012 #

  2. That explains the adorable family on a 3-person tandem bike I saw this morning!

    Comment by Spana — 8:06 am May 18, 2012 #

  3. Are you kidding? This is PERFECT weather for commuting! Not too cold, not too hot, dry roads. LOVE IT!

    Comment by Velo_nut — 8:17 am May 18, 2012 #

  4. Spana, our photographer met a family at the downtown White Center stop – their photo’s in our report on White Center Now – same ones? Of course I’m sure there’s more than one family out bicycling this morning :)
    .
    http://whitecenternow.com/?p=8379

    Comment by WSB — 8:37 am May 18, 2012 #

  5. This was my 2nd ride to work this week and I agree, it was PERFECT commute weather! I loved stopping at the commute stations along the way too. It made for a very enjoyable morning commute.

    Oh, except for the a$$hole along Alaskan Way in a red SUV who threw a smashed orange at me! Good thing he missed. Crawl back under your rock, cretin…

    Comment by wundrgrrrl — 8:40 am May 18, 2012 #

  6. That explains my morning heart attack as I was getting on the WS bridge this morning — rounding the downhill curve, East Bound, to get onto the bridge when suddenly — there was a woman biking, during the 7:30 am commute, ON the WS Bridge — OMG! Insanity. Even the 911 operator was in disbelief. I hope that poor woman survived her “bike to work” experiment.

    Comment by bosslady — 8:45 am May 18, 2012 #

  7. Yikes, bosslady, that sounds frightening (and having taken the wrong route that woman missed the pictured bike commute station and the chance at being counted and getting a mini energy bar and free air.)

    I make light, of course, and of course I hope she survived as well (looks like she did – no fire dept 911 calls on it), but this does highlight how the absolute primacy of motorized transport in this part of town results in unintuitive shoe-horned-in accommodation for other modes.

    Comment by JAT — 8:56 am May 18, 2012 #

  8. I did call 911.

    Comment by bosslady — 9:19 am May 18, 2012 #

  9. I think only the fire dept makes real time 911 calls available; presumably this would have first gone to the police so I didn’t see it on the fire dept site. Yes, I concede my first impulse was skepticism, but I decided me not being able to find it was a better explanation than you having made it up.

    Bike to work day is to bicycle commuting as Cinco de Mayo is to going out drinking: amateur hour followed by self-inflicted horror stories.

    It’s a great way to get to work though!

    Comment by JAT — 9:31 am May 18, 2012 #

  10. The 911 log only shows fire calls, correct. So unless there is an injury or actual fire/fire alarm/rescue call, it’s not on that log. There is a city map of police calls that lags by at least six hours and does not show every incident called in. BTW someone also mentioned this on the WSB Facebook page, before the comment here. I am going to check with SPD media relations just to see if it shows on THEIR logs and if there’s a disposition – did officers contact the person and get them safely off the bridge, etc. – TR
    .
    P.S. We will not allow riders-vs-drivers comments. Have had that pointless mutually insulting clash here one too many times and it is now retired permanently. Specific points of discussion re: Bike to Work Day and reported incidents (thrown fruit, biker on bridge), great. “Bikers are …” or “drivers are …” – no. Thanks for continuing to keep WSB one of the semi-few semi-civil places you can have an online discussion.

    Comment by WSB — 9:44 am May 18, 2012 #

  11. It probably didn’t show up because by the time the 911 operator drilled me on precisely where on the bridge the biker was located (moving target hard to pin point”where”) — it looked to me like the lady was pulling over trying perhaps to get off the “on” ramp” from down below/Spokane street on ramp east. Many people saw this woman as it was heavy commute time and that isn’t something you see every day.

    Comment by bosslady — 9:47 am May 18, 2012 #

  12. Oh poor lady! She probably felt so dumb. I’ve done stuff like that before and really felt silly. I hope it doesn’t dissuade her from riding again. It’s always a good idea to go with a friend the first time you bike to work, if you can.

    Comment by AJP — 11:31 am May 18, 2012 #

  13. It was really great seeing all of the other people riding their bikes to work, seeing that it is not only possible, but often makes a lot of sense!

    Comment by JN — 11:36 am May 18, 2012 #

  14. I am pro-biking to work, just for the record. Didn’t intend to sound snarky — it was just such a shock and it really did scare me for her.

    Comment by bosslady — 11:39 am May 18, 2012 #

  15. BL, my warning wasn’t directed at you – there are a few comments we have not approved for publication because they boiled down to either “you idiot drivers” or “you idiot bike riders” … TR

    Comment by WSB — 11:45 am May 18, 2012 #

  16. Thanks for helping it stay civil, WSB! So much good cheer out there today and camaraderie among road users. Let’s keep the positive energy alive and flowing!

    Comment by M.J. — 11:53 am May 18, 2012 #

  17. as i was looking at the pictures of where Alki B&B set-up i cant help but to be reminded about a time not so long ago when there was some sweet ledges set-up for skateboarders to use. oh the nostalgia

    Comment by Brandon — 12:10 pm May 18, 2012 #

  18. It’s great seeing all the riders out the last couple weeks and the surge of riders this morning. Lots of smiles this morning.

    A note to the new riders though. Please follow the traffic laws, don’t run traffic lights, etc. For those of us that commute by bike normally, this behavior does fuel the dislike of bike commuters and it’s dangerous to you.

    Keep the wheels rolling.

    Comment by Dawson — 12:32 pm May 18, 2012 #

  19. I remember those “sweet ledges” set up for skateboarders to use. They were set up smack in the middle of the bike path. I’m not the only one who almost wrecked because they were placed there illegally. I actually spray painted them orange one morning so people could stand a chance at seeing them more easily. The City removed them pretty quickly. Nothing at all against skateboarding but the middle of a bike path isn’t a great place to put concrete blocks for skateboard jumps.

    Comment by TMW — 1:15 pm May 18, 2012 #

  20. I didn’t bike it, I’m still in the process of trying to find a decent bike ($200 or less, road bike).

    @bosslady – Scary! Did the woman seem aware of her mistake? I once saw a man getting on the bridge Eastbound with an infant in a seat on his bike! I just about died…and called 911. I alway wondered if that father ever told the child’s mother about his oopsie…

    Comment by ad — 1:46 pm May 18, 2012 #

  21. I feel so bad for the lady. I am a new ws bike commuter and the lower bridge, trails, and never ending construction is confusing! Knowing that you are even able to bike down below was unclear to me at first. I would definitely give her an A for effort though.

    Comment by West Seattle luv — 2:16 pm May 18, 2012 #

  22. Seattle ranked # 7 of “Top 10″ most bikeable USA cities (Link Below):

    http://www.walkscore.com/bike

    Comment by Aman — 3:33 pm May 18, 2012 #

  23. Df = (bicyclist/West Seattle Bridge length) x (commute traffic)2, where Df = Darwin factor.

    Comment by lt fd — 4:36 pm May 18, 2012 #

  24. Great ride back to West Seattle again today, especially riding past the bumper-to-bumper traffic downtown :)

    Comment by JN — 7:11 pm May 18, 2012 #

  25. On September 11, 2001, the World Trade Center was attacked by terrorists. 2,996 people died and the political landscape of the United States of America as well as the day-to-day lives of Americans were changed more profoundly than any single event since World War 2.
    .
    Every year since 9/11 there has been an average of 40,178 vehicular deaths in the USA totaling nearly half a million people dead by automobile in the past decade. Which is the greater tragedy – the deaths, or the fact that we continue to go about business as usual, ignoring the humanitarian disaster that is brought about by the selfishness of a society based around the automobile?

    Comment by Addition — 9:02 am May 19, 2012 #

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