Photos: Richmond Beach Road at rush hour

Saturday, May 19, 2018

Wednesday, 4:48pm looking east on Richmond Beach Rd from 12th NW
Cars are turning onto RB Rd from NW 190th

By Diane Hettrick
Photos by Wayne Pridemore

Richmond Beach Road was recently restriped to change it from two lanes in each direction to one lane each way with a center turn lane. This was done in an effort to reduce accidents on this route.

As the City of Shoreline has an initiative to create bike lanes around the city, the restriping included bicycle lanes on each side.

Wednesday, 5pm looking east on Richmond Beach Rd
The car at NW 190th has to wait to turn. There are more
vehicles but they are all moving at the speed limit.
There was concern from Richmond Beach residents that this "rechannelization" project would significantly slow traffic and create traffic jams.

A photo recently published here seemed to confirm those fears.

Wednesday 5:30pm
5 or 6 cars at stopped at the light at 8th NW
They are headed west, leaving Richmond Beach
However, our photo was taken on the Saturday of the Strawberry Festival when one could expect significantly higher volumes of traffic in the neighborhood.

To see what traffic would be like on a normal weekday, Wayne Pridemore went out with his camera to see what was happening on the road.

Wednesday, 5:30pm RB Rd and 8th NW
Vehicles are turning left for Innis Arden and south 8th NW

Wednesday, 5:30pm RB Rd and 8th NW
Released by the light, 5-6 vehicles head down RB Rd
while an equal number head west

Wayne went out again on Thursday morning to sample the morning commute.

The last photo was taken at the intersection of Richmond Beach Road and 8th NW at 7:43am. The cars are leaving Richmond Beach and are stopped at the light on 8th NW.

So it's certainly not a formal traffic study or vehicle count, but a snapshot in time. It does not seem to bear out the fears of major traffic jams and increased commute times.

Richmond Beach has a number of large community events. I think it's fair to expect traffic to back up on those days and residents and visitors will want to plan accordingly.


Anonymous,  May 19, 2018 at 5:06 AM  

We get it. You support the city council. So you show a couple of favorable pics. I've already been in a westbound backup past QFC. And that was without a bus blocking the turn to northbound 8th. Goodness knows what will happen when emergency vehicles need to get by.

Anonymous,  May 19, 2018 at 8:49 AM  

What I don't understand is why the bike lanes are eliminated at Dayton. Heading east, just as the traffic doubles in size and the lanes go from one to two, the bikes are squeezed to the curb. Also, heading west, the merge from two lanes down to one occurs on a turn and seems unsafe.

Anonymous,  May 20, 2018 at 4:20 AM  

I agree with Anon 8:49. It makes no sense to abruptly end the bike lanes before Dayton. Let's finish the job so I can ride the whole way to Aurora and not have to ride with pedestrians on the sidewalk!

Anonymous,  May 20, 2018 at 10:03 AM  

I have lived in the richmond beach area for 60 years. I have always shopped at QFC, Rite aid and the fuel stations, but now I Cant because it is impossible to exit these facilities because of light to light traffic jams. Who ever the hell decided to do this "rechannelization" needs to be fired! this is a suburb not a big city.

Dave Abeles May 24, 2018 at 3:52 PM  

Gonna agree with a couple folk here... as a biker, having a bike lane end at Dayton is VERY dangerous, due to cars zipping by in both lanes (east of Dayton) around 40mph. The hillclimb is much less gradient than everything west of 8th Ave, where I live... But as someone who commutes by bike every day, it's very difficult to transfer to sidewalk at Dayton to get up to Aurora. If I stay on the road all the way over on the right lane, I get super nervous that someone is going to not see me coming around that corner and i'm going to either get clipped or run over. As a result, I either exert too much energy in the street to try keeping a fast pace with traffic, OR I ride way too slowly in the sidewalk with less cadence in pedaling and it messes my rhythm up while trying to continuously pedal from 8th Ave NW to Aurora. The rechannelization looks much nicer west of Dayton, but this is unacceptable.

Anonymous,  May 26, 2018 at 6:38 PM  

The right turn onto RB road when leaving the Saltwater Park is also a mess due to unclear new white lines.

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