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An Eastside mobility and recreation boost: King County, Eastside Rail Corridor partners celebrate new trail segment

Summary

King County Parks has opened a new one-mile Eastside Rail Corridor Trail section – Jane Hague Way – that will get you from the Cross Kirkland Corridor to the SR 520 Bridge and to heart of the Spring District in Bellevue. Another four-mile segment from Gene Coulon Park in Renton to Newcastle Beach Park in Bellevue will open later this year.

Story

King County Parks offers more than 175 miles of regional trails, but there is little doubt the newest one-mile segment in its system – Jane Hague Way

The trail section, which officially opened June 19, represents King County’s first opening of an ERC Trail segment since purchasing 16.7 miles of the corridor in 2012. What’s more, it advances King County’s vision to enhance recreation and transportation opportunities to the residents of Renton, Bellevue, Kirkland, Woodinville, Redmond and portions of unincorporated King County, and to connect Eastside communities with commercial districts, residential neighborhoods, employments centers, schools and transit hubs. between Kirkland and Bellevue on the Eastside Rail Corridor (ERC) – is special.

“The King County Eastside Rail Corridor Trail just got real,” said King County Executive Dow Constantine. “This segment signals substantial, tangible progress in our vision for connecting the Eastside like never before, and bringing new transportation options and recreational opportunities for the region.”

“Today we celebrate the next milestone in opening this regional trail to the public,” said King County Council Vice-Chair Claudia Balducci. “After many years of dreaming and planning, it is exciting for the County to finally be reaching the point of connecting our portions of the trail to others, including the Cross Kirkland Corridor north to Woodinville and Snohomish, eventually reaching east to Redmond and South through Bellevue’s Grand Connection to the exciting redevelopment in Renton and beyond. This trail truly represents a key step in connecting our entire east County to each and the rest of the region.”

"This new trail connection - with its link to the 520 Bridge as well as Kirkland and Bellevue - is huge for growing active transportation in the region,” said Richard Smith, Executive Director of the Cascade Bicycle Club. “We are so excited to watch this new trail segment unlock even more possibilities for people commuting, recreating, and enjoying our regional trail system."

The one-mile section of trail is considered a critical hub in the regional non-motorized transportation system. That’s because it allows users of the Cross Kirkland Corridor to access the Spring District in Bellevue, and facilitates a critical connection to the Washington State Department of Transportation’s State Route 520 trail that connects Redmond, Bellevue, Kirkland, Seattle, and the University of Washington. 

Joined by trail and cycling advocates, and business and community leaders at the trail on Tuesday, King County dedicated a segment of the trail to former King County Councilmember and ERC Trail champion Jane Hague, who represented District 6 for 22 years from 1994 to 2015. Hague served as the co-chair for the ERC Regional Advisory Council and is credited for her early work on the ERC vision and creating a foundation for collaboration on the Council. In 2015, the Council passed a motion to designate the segment Jane Hague Way.

Later this summer, King County is expected to open another four-mile ERC Trail section from Gene Coulon Park in Renton to Newcastle Beach Park in Bellevue, with connections at either end to the existing Lake Washington Loop Trail.

The Eastside Rail Corridor is owned and managed by King County, the cities of Kirkland and Redmond, Sound Transit, and Puget Sound Energy. The Eastside Rail Corridor was purchased with the goal of developing a shared, uninterrupted multi-use corridor through the spine of east King County.

Relevant Links

Quotes

The King County Eastside Rail Corridor Trail just got real. This segment signals substantial, tangible progress in our vision for connecting the Eastside like never before, and bringing new transportation options and recreational opportunities for the region.

Dow Constantine, King County Executive

Today we celebrate the next milestone in opening this regional trail to the public. After many years of dreaming and planning, it is exciting for the County to finally be reaching the point of connecting our portions of the trail to others, including the Cross Kirkland Corridor north to Woodinville and Snohomish, eventually reaching east to Redmond and South through Bellevue’s Grand Connection to the exciting redevelopment in Renton and beyond. This trail truly represents a key step in connecting our entire east County to each and the rest of the region.”

Claudia Balducci, King County Vice-Chair

"This new trail connection - with its link to the 520 Bridge as well as Kirkland and Bellevue - is huge for growing active transportation in the region. We are so excited to watch this new trail segment unlock even more possibilities for people commuting, recreating, and enjoying our regional trail system."

Richard Smith, Executive Director, Cascade Bicycle Club

For More Information, Contact:

Logan Harris, Department of Natural Resources and Parks, 206-477-4516

About King County Parks

King County Parks - Your Big Backyard - offers more than 200 parks and 28,000 acres of open space, including such regional treasures as Marymoor Park and Cougar Mountain Regional Wildland Park, 175 miles of regional trails, 215 miles of backcountry 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.