If you were a walk-on ferry passenger visiting Seattle over the past few years, you likely walked on the elevated passage-way that extended from the Colman Dock Ferry Terminal in Downtown Seattle to Marion Street and beyond. When we’d trekked over this span, we’d often wonder, “Ok, this is a pretty significantly-built temporary structure, so what’s going to happen to it when workers finally put the new permanent span – across busy Alaskan Way – in place?”
Well, now we know. The temporary walkway is being removed and is being donated to the Puget Sound to Pacific Collaborative, which plans to re-use the structure on sections of the ambitious Puget Sound to Pacific Trail corridor – a combination of the Olympic Discovery Trail and the Sound to Olympics Trail in Kitsap, Jefferson and Clallam counties.
The temporary walkway comes down as a new, permanent pedestrian bridge has opened from the Washington State Ferries terminal to downtown Seattle, following its historic path, leading to First Avenue via Marion Street.
Five of the eight segments from the old span, totaling more than 350 feet, are being donated to Clallam County and facilitated by the Puget Sound to Pacific Collaborative. The bridge segments will be trucked away and stored near Port Angeles.
The walkway segments will eventually be re-used as multi-use bridges along the Puget Sound to Pacific corridor, a planned 200-mile multi-use trail system from the ferry terminals on Puget Sound to the Pacific Ocean at La Push.
The donation was initiated by the Puget Sound to Pacific Collaborative – an initiative of the Bainbridge Island Parks & Trails Foundation, the North Kitsap Trails Association, and the Peninsula Trails Coalition – and approved by the Seattle Department of Transportation.
“The walkway structures are great assets, and can see new use at a number of points along the Puget Sound to Pacific Trail,” says Mary Meier, Bainbridge Island Parks & Trails Foundation executive director. “We’re grateful to Seattle for making these available for public use elsewhere, as the new trail network builds out.”
The elevated walkway had been in service for several years during construction of the new Washington State Ferries terminal at Colman Dock and Seattle’s major waterfront redevelopment. It also carried pedestrians to and from the terminal to Pioneer Square along Columbia Street and Western Avenue. The new passenger walkway connects the terminal with First Avenue at Marion Street.
Meantime, the PS2P Collaborative recently sponsored a successful federal grant application program that is bringing in more than $16.13 million to 14 western Washington agencies to plan and design more than 30 projects along the aforementioned ODT and STO trails.
The trail system will connect existing and planned sections of the STO and the ODT. The route from the Bainbridge Island WSF ferry terminal to La Push is the westernmost leg of the Rails to Trails Conservancy’s Great American Rail Trail, from Washington D.C. to the Washington Coast.
The eventual completion of the Puget Sound to Pacific Trail will be something of a dream come true to the likes of Jeff Bohman, president of the Peninsula Trails Coalition. Bohman and fellow coalition volunteers were instrumental in helping create the ODT way back in 1988, working over the decades with local jurisdictions and private property owners to build trails – now totaling nearly 95 miles.
“Those of us who have been active (in the coalition) are thrilled” with the potential of the PSP grant and subsequent design and planning of additional trails, Bohman says. “That’s why we’ve put in our time. It’s a huge demonstration of how far we’ve come.”
For More info on the trails: email Steve Durrant, email@example.com, or see www.ps2p.org. For information on the Colman Dock project, see
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