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Natural Resources and Parks

King County, Washington

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DNRP
March 13, 2012

Take a hike, or a ride, on a more enjoyable Burke-Gilman Trail in Lake Forest Park

With improvements complete, King County and trail users celebrate reopening of popular trail

BGT Ribbon CuttingThe snip of giant scissors cutting through a wide gold ribbon signaled the official reopening of a safer, more enjoyable Burke-Gilman Trail segment through Lake Forest Park this afternoon.

“This delivers on a promise made many years ago, to preserve and protect a valuable recreational treasure and active transportation link that greatly enhances the lives of King County residents,” said County Parks Director Kevin Brown, who with dozens of trail users braved a brief snowstorm to celebrate the grand reopening of a vastly improved 2.2-mile trail stretch.

Also joining Brown were Assistant Deputy King County Executive Rhonda Berry, County Councilmember Bob Ferguson, and officials from Lake Forest Park and Cascade Bicycle Club.

“This trail helps connect the mountains to the Sound; it connects rural, to suburban to urban communities. It connects employees to jobs, and customers to businesses. More than that, it connects people,” said Berry. “Everyone involved should be very proud of their role in helping to make this a safer, more enjoyable trail for many decades to come.”

Used by thousands every day, the trail segment from Northeast 145th Street to Logboom Park in Kenmore was made safer by widening and repaving it, and installing soft surface shoulders, improved street crossings and better lighting.

“The Burke-Gilman Trail is the most widely used trail in the County’s trail network and connects many of the communities in north King County that I represent,” said Councilmember Bob Ferguson. “I appreciate the patience of the community as these important improvements were made.”

The trail has been open to users since February 10. It had been closed since June 2011 as King County completed the first major redevelopment of the oldest Burke-Gilman trail section.

The Burke-Gilman Trail runs from Seattle’s Shilshole Bay area to Kenmore. From there, the trail connects with the County’s Sammamish River Trail and continues through Woodinville and into Redmond.

Trail use surveys show that more than 1,300 trips are made on the Burke-Gilman Trail through this section on weekdays, and the trail is used by many as part of their daily commute. On a sunny weekend the number of trips can jump to more than 2,200 in this location.

Redevelopment included widening the trail to 12 feet, installing soft-surface shoulders that walkers and runners can use, and enhancing intersection and crossing treatments. More than 340 trees were planted, and upgrades also included a new bridge, improved sightlines and improved drainage.

The County spent more than five years of planning and design work for this redevelopment project, with ongoing involvement of a citizen’s advisory group and in close coordination with the City of Lake Forest Park.

Funding was provided in part by the voter-approved Open Space and Trails Levy. The trail is managed by Seattle within the city limits south of Northeast 145th Street and by King County outside Seattle. More information is available at http://www.kingcounty.gov/recreation/parks/trails/regionaltrailssystem/burkegilman.aspx.

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King County Parks - Your Big Backyard - offers more than 200 parks and 26,000 acres of parks and natural lands, including such regional treasures as Marymoor Park and Cougar Mountain Regional Wildland Park, 175 miles of regional trails and a world-class aquatic center. By cultivating strong relationships with non-profit, corporate and community partners, King County Parks enhances park amenities while reducing costs. Learn more at http://www.kingcounty.gov/parks/