It is very common for people to criticize bikers for breaking the law. Some do, obviously (at their own risk, I might add, unlike drivers). But I think you would be hard pressed to find such blatant disregard (or perhaps ignorance) of the law. Five drivers, clearly breaking the law, in less than a minute.

This is also a great example of how bike lanes help drivers. Imagine you are driving behind the biker, and unlike the rest of the drivers, know the law. You drive patiently behind the rider, going around 20 MPH. Meanwhile, you have some idiot behind you, begging you to pass (so they can pass as well). You have the real possibility of some bozo trying to pass both of you. Now imagine someone headed the other way, using the turn lane for what it is meant for (making a left turn). They see the bike going straight ahead, they see me going straight ahead (with no blinker on), so they signal and move into the turn lane. Just then, the bozo passes both me and the biker, going well over 30 MPH. Now you have a head-on collision with one vehicle going over 30. That’s how people die.

In contrast, the entire situation is avoided with bike lanes. The bike is on the right, and cars pass in a separate lane. Failure to provide proper bike infrastructure on the only logical bike route in the area has made both driving and biking a lot more dangerous. Nice job, mayor.


There is a greenway a couple blocks downhill that "connects seamlessly to the Burke Gilman trail." It's much safer than 35th during commute hours, so why not use the greenway?


The city has underfunded the Bicycle Master Plan for years.
Many of the bike paths are very peacemeal- 1/2 mile of protected lanes- and then an abrupt stop.
Americans need to take bicycling more seriously - I find my weight goes down 5 to 7 pounds when I walk and bike instead of riding in cars everywhere (and conversely goes up when riding in vehicles instead of walking or biking).
Bicycling (and walking) should be seen as a genuine health enhancement, instead of a cutesy concession to a few eco-freaks.


"It's much safer than 35th during commute hours, so why not use the greenway?"

Because angry man with Go Pro is angry!


I don’t have a dog in this fight. I walk to work. I used to bike commute for about a decade when I lived in West Seattle. But that was years ago and traffic wasn’t as nightmarish as it is today. And was perilous then.

However there is one thing as true then as it is now and that’s cycling purists are god damned delusional cry babies. You’re a powerless community that people just don’t give a shit about.

Look. According to the 2018 census Cycling commuting as dropped to an all time low. It’s not growing proportionally anywhere close to what you claimed. And it won’t. (

You’re in a Catch 22. Bike infrastructure will not grow until there are way more bikers. And there won’t be more bikers until there is more infrastructure.

Automobile commuters are the overwhelming dominant majority and they pay for the bulk of the roads through property, B&O, and gas taxes. That’s reality. Sure, cyclists pay some of those taxes, too. But that’s not what the majority sees.

So. Unless cyclists can demonstrate they are willing pay some small even symbolic share through a bike license fee or something no political block with any power will take them seriously. This is what you have to do. Nothing will change until you do.

Honestly, I think dedicated protected bike lanes are a great idea. But I will vote so that funds be prioritized so that light rail and commuting options the vast majority will get the most benefit from come first. Bike lanes are low priority. And most people feel the same way. You will always be low on the totem pole. Well. Until the economy crashes and nobody can afford car payments. But then nobody will afford higher taxes either.

Anyway. You can wail and whine all you want. But you have to have more skin in the game to demonstrate you have more power than just annoying traffic blocking demonstrations that will be ignored 20 minutes after traffic clears. What you’re doing now isn’t working.


Hundreds of millions spent on cycling in Seattle in the past decade yet cycling is at a ten year low according to the city’s own data.

It seems it was just a trend for white male hipsters with anger issues & Go Pros, who are now aging out and buying cars.


those are illegal passes? how does one legally pass a bike on 35th?

I hope Save 35th is happy now. They bike lanes got wiped out, but they still lost their parking. "Spite is when you hurt yourself to hurt another" - C. Mudede, on Trump Voters


@8: Technically, you don't. By the letter of the law, you just have to slow down and treat the bike just like a car. You go as slow as the biker wants to go.

Just as you can not legally pass a slow car by using the turn lane there, you can't legally pass a bike either.


@8 those are illegal passes? how does one legally pass a bike on 35th?

as a daily bike commuter (West Seattle to U district via Eastlake) i am thrilled that motorists passed giving the rider at least 3 feet. looks like most had their right wheel on the far side of the turn lane. what more could a person ask for?

The "protected bike lane" is not for this type of rider. they are for slow riders. that's fine for them. I only use them going uphill, and even then i don't use the uphill section of the university bridge going north.


@2: That greenway is fine for recreational riding, but it's slow and circuitous, and frankly poorly designed. Bike commuting is about getting from Point A to Point B, not Points A, F, Q, L and then, finally, Point B.

Keep taking the lane on 35th, Lester. I know I will. I will not, however, be frequenting the establishments on 35th Ave NE, most of which opposed the bike lanes. Grateful Bread and the Wedgwood Alehouse are dead to me.


@9 if that is true that is just ridiculous. and of course cold never be expected to be enforced/ followed. As i mentioned. This all looks good to me.


I catch up with you lazy turds, bash your stupid cars, and ride off. You cannot go where I go. And you are not as fast.
Sometimes I have enough time in my approach to slash a tire before disappearing away into the corridors. You dim bulbs really should gain some situational awareness.


“You go as slow as the biker wants to go.”

So when the spandex warriors say “share the road“ they’re talking out of their sweaty, white tech bro asses, right?


@14 You seem nice. Another angry white male with a testosterone problem and a Huffy.

Nothing says “white privilege” in Seattle more than being able to cycle to work.


@9 You sure about that? This indicates otherwise:
I've never heard that it is illegal to pass a bicycle if there is sufficient clearance. Unless Washington State has some specific law it sounds like the standard is 3 feet of clearance.


I don't have a dog in this fight as i rarely get up that way. I was on 35th a couple weeks ago, coming back from Mend Bicycles.
But this is the forever debate right? Between Vehicular Cycling and Recreational? I take the lane everywhere, because like you i am trying to get from A to B. fast. so the "protected" bike lane just jams me into an intersection, in the right hand side, against a right turning care. University Bridge going west is the worst for this.
If people want to feel protected, go slower, and stop at the intersections, then maybe the greenway is for them?


@17: The University Bridge runs north/south.


@14: No one is impressed by your tough guy LARPing. It just makes you look like a child.

@17: Based on what the WA law says about the bike being identical (in rights and responsibilities) to any other vehicle when it is on the road, and the writer's seeming outrage that he was being passed, it seems that way to me.

If you have a treat a bike like a car, it would still be illegal to pass a slow moving car by using the turn lane, so it seems like it would be illegal to pass a bike as well.

But I could be wrong, of course. Not exactly a bike law scholar.


@19 I ride I bike and I drive and I would never expect motorists to inch along behind me when I am on my bike. Passing within like 6 inches is a whole other matter however. Those people should be bludgeoned.

Ignorance of actual laws seems to be rather rampant in this city. For instance, cyclists who imagine they can be considered motorists one instant and pedestrians the next. No motorists are not required to stop for you at intersections (unless maybe it is crystal clear you are in a cross walk). Also idiots: a red right turn arrow does not mean no turn on red! This makes me homicidal. I have noticed that there are some places that is exactly what it means though, NYC for instance. Pretty sure the nitwits that hold up traffic at red right arrows are not all from NYC though.


@16: cycle commuting says white privilege more than being able to drive a Tesla to work?

troll, please. show your work.


I have come to hate the entitled and hostile bikers in this city. Some people cannot bike. For others it's not practical. Stop forcing your religion on everyone. You want to inconvenience everyone else so your privileged spandexed ass can cycle everywhere. This is why I will vote against the biking interests whenever I can.


@11, I do this commute and I think this argument is full of crap. So sorry you have to stop at the occasional stop sign and have to watch out for kids and pets and car doors. Would love to fund a world super convenient for you, but I guess we all have to share a little bit.


@20, this idea that what benefits bikes doesn’t also benefit pedestrians, which is EVERYONE. 65th is a safer street for pedestrians without having cars weaving in and out of lanes, next to sidewalks, turning into side streets without heightened attention to whether peds or bikes might be crossing. It’s all humans just trying to get around, and people in cars are in a far better position to survive an accident. Slow down and share the road.


there you go again, thinking that just because 99 percent of all Seattle cyclists are taxpaying Citizens and 80 percent of all car drivers in Seattle are not citizens of Seattle and don't pay property taxes that pay for our roads like the cyclists do, that the Mayor for Suburbia should stop having the suburban cars killing citizen cyclists.

How unfair of you!

Next thing you'll say we should have everyone in Westeros decide who is King!


Nothing illegal whatsoever about those passes.


RCW 46.61.140
Driving on roadways laned for traffic.
Whenever any roadway has been divided into two or more clearly marked lanes for traffic the following rules in addition to all others consistent herewith shall apply:

(2) Upon a roadway which is divided into three lanes and provides for two-way movement of traffic, a vehicle shall not be driven in the center lane EXCEPT (my emphasis) when overtaking and passing another vehicle traveling in the same direction when such center lane is clear of traffic within a safe distance, or in preparation for making a left turn or where such center lane is at the time allocated exclusively to traffic moving in the same direction that the vehicle is proceeding and such allocation is designated by official traffic-control devices.


@22, LOL, so road ragey! You’d be surprised how much a little biking and walking can reduce that pent up rage! Enjoy being angry constantly!


I had a self-righteous cyclist confront me in the parking lot of the Ballard Value Village for "almost running him over" (which I didn't) by not stopping for as he came out of a side lane in the parking lot. I gave it back to the sanctimonious little bore x 2, and ended by suggesting where he put his stupid bike.

I have no problem with cyclists, but if they want to get in my face, I'll give it back to them.


@25. I agree, sharing is good. Which is why I'll still take the lane on 35th.


@29: Wait, so in WA, you are allowed to use the turning lane for passing other vehicles?

That seems very unsafe and odd, but fair enough. If this is the case in that area, then these would seem to be legal passes.


Choke on this @29:

RCW 46.61.290
Required position and method of turning at intersections.
(3) Two-way left turn lanes.
(c) Upon a roadway where a center lane has been provided by distinctive pavement markings for the use of vehicles turning left from either direction, no vehicles may turn left from any other lane. A vehicle shall not be driven in this center lane for the purpose of overtaking or passing another vehicle proceeding in the same direction. No vehicle may travel further than three hundred feet within the lane. A signal, either electric or manual, for indicating a left turn movement, shall be made at least one hundred feet before the actual left turn movement is made.


@29 You are conflating a "center lane" with a "two way left turn lane." These are not the same thing, and are treated differently. See RCW 46.61.290(3)(c).


@30 You should get out of this godforsaken fishing village once in a while. A warning: if you obliviously obstruct traffic in just about any other major city on earth you might be a little surprised at the consequences.


@29 and @ 34

Can't we all get along?! I think the law may be conflicting but we all know what it means. If a car is driving in the lane, you can't use the turn lane to blow past. but if car has flat tire, or stops on the side of the road to unload, you can pass in the turn lane. i am so fine with this on my daily bike commute. the real issue s people trying to pass without changing lanes!


@34 That sounds like a 'center turn lane' that you see at intersections. Does it mean a roadway divided along its length into 3 lanes? Makes perfect sense that it would be illegal to use a turn lane at an intersection to overtake.


All I know is, if the expectation for drivers is to just endlessly lag behind a biker going 20 miles below the speed limit until the biker turns, with no option to pass, that's not reasonable. If a car were going that slow, they'd be ticketed for blocking traffic.


@39: Agreed. Which is why a bike lane makes a lot of sense.


Was Mitchell going to lane split at the end of that video?


@38: You're pointing out another reason why this road design doesn't make sense. They've implemented a center turn lane, better suited for intersections, along an entire stretch of road. Much of the turn lane doesn't even turn onto anything perpendicular.


I am so looking forward to the SPD and Washington State Patrol remote shutting off all these car engines.


@39 But that's not what these cyclists think.

They are good people.

Car drivers are bad people.

They are the nearly all white, well-off, mostly male "Moral Majority" of carbon panic with all the holier-than-thou sanctimony that goes along with their pious belief system.

And I say this as someone who cycles fairly regularly.


@40: 34th and 36th don't exist in half of this corridor.


@45 Enjoy the wait.


@43: Lane splitting is legal.


Illegal passing huh.

There are turnouts on state highways. It is illegal to not use a turnout if you are slowing four or more vehicles.

It goes against all possible intuition to either sit behind the biker or demand that you, as a biker, are not to be passed.

No, you cannot change lanes in an intersection. Regardless, what’s wrong with, when not at a light, giving the bike half the lane as you blow by?

That extra room is people being nice.

My longest daily bike commute was from Wallingford to Georgetown and back. I also used to take the Burke Gilman east, then head south to Bellevue on weekends.

What is intuitive is that, if you’re heading up a steep hill, you use the fucking sidewalk if the flow of traffic is that much faster.

I’m just not a cunt, is all ;[


Go watch Mitch's videos. Nothing but him riding down the middle of lanes, slower than the speed limit, a lone white male tech bro deliberately trying to piss off hundreds of drivers (and bus passengers also stuck behind him) for another Go Pro hit for the Sanctimonious Cyclists Club.

He is, quite frankly, an asshole and probably part of the reason fewer people are cycling in Seattle than 5 years ago. They don't want to be associated with entitled white people like him.


Every one of those drivers did exactly what I (daily bike commuter for 30+ years) would want them to. They gave the cyclist tons of room. Nothing was even close. Each of those passes was safer then what I see from the average driver. I did have the sound turned off, so maybe someone honked & I didn't hear it, but it all looked OK to me. No one was close to hitting the cyclist, and the cars were not being impeded.

It might be technically illegal to cross into the two-way turn lane there, but there was absolutely nothing hazardous about it, and the drivers that did so didn't block, delay, or inconvenience anyone. If I see anything wrong there, the lanes look ridiculously narrow for major city streets.

If you bike commute in Seattle or use your bike to get around in general, you are going to have to have to ride on roads without bike lanes. It's not the end of the world, and the average driver seems to be more aware than they were 20 years ago.


@46- You have to admit that it is car drivers that create traffic jams, pollution, climate change, and thousands of traffic deaths a year. But I guess they're no worse than anyone else.


I'll toss in a comment; I agree the Mayor has blame but honestly DOT has more to blame if you live in North Seattle nearby 35th Ave NE you understand (nearby 125th).

It starts with the traffic coming from the UW through Sand point dumping onto 125th Avenue who then go down or up 35th Ave NE trying to get to I-5 or run down 125th Ave NE towards Aurora where honestly there's ticket-able offenses every hour of every day. Sitting behind the 41 and using the center lane to pass? check (because it's only 1 lane)

Yeah they kept the bike lanes there; I suspect the bikers hate having to share a bike lane with people who park their car badly.

Why can't we just make the center lane the bike lane? convert it into 2 bike lanes for each direction and tell cars to off?

I know cars think they are the center of the world; that's why they have no problem driving up on the sidewalk to hit you.

yes that happens


@53 Thanks for proving my point so many cyclists like Go-Pro-Mitch are sanctimonious pricks.

The last tech bro I heard a lecture like that from didn't bat an eyelid flying on vacation 3 times a year with his family, living in a single family home while working for Microsoft, all the while complaining about working class guys in their "gas guzzling" trucks.


"I know cars think they are the center of the world"

Well, we are far more than the 3% (and dropping) of cycling commuters in Seattle. Cyclists who are mainly white upper middle class professionals and white male tech bros with low EQs.

You're such a tiny fraction of the commuting population demanding so much yet you say car drivers "are the center of the world"?

Get over sanctimonious self and your hobby.


I'm not against licenses for bicycles in principle, since they use public roads. However, regulating this would be an awful nightmare. A simpler solution is s surtax on bike purchases, as proposed in Washington state in 2013.
The sheer hatred of bikers and car drivers towards each others is way out of line!
Most households have car drivers AND bike riders. And, let's face it, everyone just wants to get home in one piece, without injury or their insurance rates doubling.


If I can't pass a bicyclist in my car, then the bicyclist can't pass me when the light turns red and they ride up to the intersection. It drives me nuts that I have to drive into oncoming traffic to pass the same cyclists over and over.


I ride over 3000 miles per year and always take 39th, never 35th


Hey @2 - have you ever ridden a "Greenway"? At least on the Fremont street one here in Greenwood, it's one of the most dangerous stretches of my bike commute because cross traffice DOES NOT honor the stop signs and routinely blows through them right in front of me on a bike. That is why riding on a controlled arterial is safer in some ways, because at least people stop and look (mostly) before pulling out.


@14 Hahaha, we will all have a good laugh at your funeral.


@61- No shit. 1st NW up here is a greenway. Almost no one stops at the stop signs, and you can't see the cars that are blowing through them because of all the parking on both sides. It's right by a school, and the city is basically telling kids that this is a safe street to ride on. Only a matter of time until someone gets killed.


My car lives in fear of a Zoloft-addled lester t-boning it and marring the paint.


@2 -- Bullshit. Complete and utter bullshit. This is one of the many facts about 35th that people don't get. There simply is no good alternative to using 35th. That is why bikes used it before, and it is why bikes use it now. Maybe cars should use the mythical alternative you mentioned (since it is such a great alternative).

This isn't true for every bike route. Take 8th Avenue Northwest. This is a street with bike lanes that somehow, magically, works for both drivers and riders. But for much of the way, riders can use 6th -- a quiet side street. The grade is roughly the same. Or how about Roosevelt Way over Maple Leaf. Eighth Avenue NE works as an alternative, and actually involves less of the hill. Fifth works as well (although there is more car traffic).

Now look at 35th NE. In many cases, it is the only street that goes through. Here is how you get from 110th to 100th via 35th ( Notice that Google sends you on 35th. Now look at the alternative, just between 105th and 110th. You have twice the distance (, and an extra 30 feet of elevation gain. It is the same on the other side. Meanwhile, how the fuck are you supposed to get from 110th (e. g. Nathan Hale High School) to 105th without going on a major arterial? The simple answer is you can't. Even if you go around ( and spend all the extra effort gaining an extra fifty feet, you still are traveling on 110th.

This isn't the only section like this. Using alternatives means going up and down (, along with dealing with real hazards that exist on the side streets. Here is a great example. Going from 75th to 70th is a straightforward, easy bike on 35th that Google calls "mostly flat". But if you go to the side, you have to gain sixty feet, along with the extra distance and intersections ( It is both a matter of topography ( as well as street layout. 35th is by far the best way to navigate the area by bike since there is no reasonable alternative.

That is why bikes will continue to use it. The mayor totally fucked up in not recognizing the particulars of the situation. She has created a hazard for both bikes and cars, while not saving a dime.


Bicycle riders are ableist scum.


The tone of this article is precisely why 95% of Seattle can’t stand bikers.

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