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Council Adopts the Eastside Rail Corridor Trail Master Plan

Summary

When completed, the Eastside Rail Corridor is expected to be the most heavily used recreational corridor on the eastside of King County.

Story

On Monday, the Metropolitan King County Council approved the next step in making the Eastside Rail Corridor a reality through the passage of the ERC’s Trail Master Plan. The Eastside Rail Corridor (ERC) is the former BNSF rail line that runs through the linear heart of the Eastside.

The Trail Master Plan, which includes the entire 42 mile corridor running from Snohomish County to Renton, lays out a multi-use vision that will allow people and green spaces to coexist on a car-free, transit and trail corridor. When completed, the Eastside Rail Corridor is expected to be the most heavily used recreational corridor on the eastside of King County. The ERC’s Trail Master Plan focuses on the trail portion of the multi-use vision while maintaining room for other uses and economic development and educational opportunities directly adjacent to the corridor, like the Global Innovation Exchange and REI’s corporate headquarters.

“I am excited to approve the Trail Master Plan so we can finally roll up our sleeves and get to work on creating one of the most unique corridors in the country. “Said Councilmember Claudia Balducci, who also Chair’s the Eastside Rail Corridor’s Regional Advisory Committee. “We will be connecting thousands of residents up and down the Eastside to transit, trail, recreation and economic development opportunities.”

“This Master Trail Plan is an important milestone in the development of this great treasure for all of King County,” said Councilmember Kathy Lambert. "I’m looking forward to the day when the entire corridor is completed and being used by many. Until then it’s encouraging to see the progress that is being made every day and this is just one more very important step in that journey.”

“Thanks to all those who shared their voice about the future of this shared community resource,” said Council Vice Chair Reagan Dunn. “I am excited that this long time vision of King County and countless others on the Eastside is moving forward.”

“Now that the master plan is approved, we can begin creating a world-class, multi-purpose trail that knits together East and South King County communities,” said King County Executive Dow Constantine. “Today’s action by the County Council will help us complete sections of the trail by 2020, including the iconic Wilburton Trestle.”

The ERC runs through Woodinville, Kirkland, Redmond and Bellevue, and parts of unincorporated Snohomish and King Counties. The corridor represents the final, uninterrupted stretch of land through the spine of east King County, creating a unique and once in a generation opportunity for transit alternatives and pedestrian use.

Balducci, Dunn and Lambert represent the County on the Eastside Rail Corridor’s Regional Advisory Committee and shepherded the plan into fruition.
 

Read more about this legislation on the King County Council’s LEGISEARCH system at http://mkcclegisearch.kingcounty.gov and type in “2016-0510”

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