While many people in Seattle currently ride bicycles, the Seattle Bicycle Master Plan (BMP) aspires to encourage and accommodate even more people to ride a bike. The BMP provides a blueprint to make it easier to decide to ride through a focus on enjoyable and safe places to ride, connected and well-maintained bicycle facilities that link the places people want to go, and a traveling public that is educated on how to safely, respectfully and predictably share the road.

Alta worked with the City of Seattle to develop an update to the 2007 Seattle Bicycle Master Plan. The plan addresses fast-evolving best practices and new thinking towards bicycle facilities, which are geared to serve a broader range of people who ride bicycles, as well as those interested in riding a bike. The updated plan will help Seattle continue its national leadership in bicycling, with a vision to enable riding a bicycle to be a comfortable and integral part of daily life in Seattle for people of all ages and abilities.

The main purpose of the Seattle Bicycle Master Plan is to provide a framework for the Seattle Department of Transportation’s future actions and investments to improve bicycling throughout the city. These investments include new bicycle infra­structure (off-street trails and on-street bicycle facilities); bicycle parking spaces and other end-of-trip facilities; and programs to enhance bicycle safety and encourage more people to ride bikes. Alta’s approach centered on gathering extensive public input to engage broad and diverse segments of Seattle residents, businesses, employees, and property owners, and reflect the priorities and interests of infrequent and potential riders, as well as avid users of the system. Alta staff held regular brief­ings with the Seattle Bicycle Advisory Board (SBAB), coordinated with City staff and other local agencies, and reviewed data relating to past bicycle plans, topography, and traffic speeds and volumes. The planning process included broad Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and field analysis of Seattle’s transportation network to determine locations where bicycle facilities can be integrated into the existing street network.

Key deliverables include a high-level existing conditions report, an updated citywide bicycling network which will include new facility types, a data-driven analysis to prioritize needs and projects, bicycle design guidelines and standards, and conceptual design and cost estimates of high priority projects.