Work has finally begun in Arlington on the last 1-mile interruption of the Centennial Trail as it rolls for some 30 miles from downtown Snohomish to the Skagit County line.
The construction on 67th Avenue Northeast should run off and on throughout the year and into early 2014. Crews started installing fencing and opening parts of the road this week. Lane changes and road closures can be expected.
The owner of Arlington Velo Sport suggests a couple of detours listed below.
This area in Arlington is the final “missing link” in the Centennial Trail. In the past, bicyclists arriving from the south faced an “end of trail” sign at Cemetery Road with no directions how to proceed. Most used either the road or partial sidewalk along 67th Avenue Northeast to enter downtown.
When construction is complete early next year, bicyclists will face a seamless trail alongside 67th Avenue that leads right to the restrooms at Legion Memorial Park in downtown, a regular stopping place for recreational bicyclists.
Originally part of the Seattle, Lake Shore & Eastern Railroad, the route was abandoned by the Burlington Northern Railway in the 1970s and early 1980s. Conversion of the right-of-way to a paved trail began in 1989, the state’s 100th birthday — hence the name Centennial Trail.
Last November, the county extended the Centennial Trail four miles north to the Skagit County line at the Nakashima Barn. Earlier in the year, Snohomish added a couple of additional blocks on the south end of the Centennial Trail.
Credit goes to the non-profit Centennial Trail Coalition and government agencies for pushing this trail ahead.
Although you might be able to ride your bicycle through the area during some parts of the construction phase, Mark Everett, owner of Arlington Velo Sport, suggested a couple of detours.
The Highway 9 detour for riding the shoulder — Approaching Arlington from the south on the Centennial Trail, turn right onto 204th Street NE (Cemetery Road) and ride one block to Highway 9. Turn left from the road or using the crosswalks and head north on the shoulder of Highway 9. This is a limited access highway, and you can rejoin the Centennial Trail just a few blocks north of Legion Park at North 4th Street.
The Olympic Place detour for riding on sidewalks — Approaching Arlington from the south on the Centennial Trail, turn right onto 204th Street NE (Cemetery Road) and ride two blocks to Olympic Place at a shopping center. Use the crosswalks to turn left and follow Olympic Place into downtown, where it becomes Olympic Avenue and rejoins the Centennial Trail.
Find updated news about the project at the 67th Avenue website.