There’s going to be a big party for bicyclists and pedestrians on the new Evergreen SR 520 Bridge across Lake Washington all weekend.
Early Saturday, nearly 10,000 people are expected for a fun run and walk onto the State Route 520 bridge starting at Husky Stadium. A ribbon-cutting is planned at 10:30 and Guinness Book of World Records will be on hand to award it the longest floating bridge in the world.
Then on Sunday, some 6,000 to 7,000 bicyclists in the first-ever Emerald City Bike Ride arrive to pedal across the bridge, which will be opened to motor traffic later this month.
The route goes directly onto and across the new bridge from Husky Stadium. On the way back, a longer route takes cyclists onto the I-5 express lanes for a trip through downtown and a return via the Mountains to Sound Trail and Lake Washington Boulevard. Quite the unique experience — all bikes and no cars.
If you haven’t signed up for the Cascade Bicycle Club’s Emerald City Bike Ride, then you are out of luck. There is no day-of registration and you can’t do that ride.
Riding the bridge
You can still get on the bridge on Saturday with your bike from the Bellevue side, however.
WSDOT says folks on bicycles can get onto the bridge from the State Route 520 Regional bike and pedestrian path on Saturday. That trail runs alongside expressway from Redmond.
Here’s what WSDOT says in a press release:
“Participants need to plan ahead to get to and from the event. For most people, activities on the new bridge will be accessible only by free shuttles from Seattle and the Eastside. The only exception is to reach the celebration’s Eastside entrance on foot from the Evergreen Point Road lid or by bicycle from the new SR 520 regional bike and pedestrian path on the Eastside.”
The paved trail is readily accessible to cyclists from Redmond, Kirkland and Bellevue. Portions were just finished in 2015 (there’s still a gap in Bellevue). It links with the north-side bike and pedestrian trail across the new bridge, which ends where the floating bridge joins the Montlake portion of the existing bridge.
One of the easiest ways to get there would be to park at the South Kirkland Park and Ride on 108th Avenue, jump on your bike, and ride the 2.8 miles along the trail to the end of the Evergreen Bridge [see map].
On Sunday, bicyclists will need a bib number to get onto the bridge from the Eastside and participate in the ride.
Shuttles on the east and west sides will also carry people to the bridge on Saturday from 10 to 5. See the WSDOT information on the shuttle routes.
Geekwire posted a long story with pictures today: “Inside the world’s longest floating bridge.”