Map of Eastside Trail Corridor

Conserving the Seattle's Eastside Rail Corridor for long term best use.

Eastside Trail Advocates' mission is to create the region's premier pedestrian and biking trails along the Eastside BNSF corridor.


SAVE THE DATE

SATURDAY, MARCH 30 12 p.m. – 2 p.m.

Please mark March 30 on your calendar to join in celebrating King County’s long-sought-after acquisitions along nearly 20 miles of the Eastside Rail Corridor. These acquisitions are an important step in preserving the Corridor for multiple near- and long-term uses. The open house celebration event is scheduled alongside the corridor:

  • When: Saturday, March 30, 2013, 12 p.m. – 2 p.m. · 12 p.m. -1 p.m. – Officials’ Comments · 1 p.m. 2 p.m. – Social Program
  • Where: Seahawks Headquarters/Training Facility at Virginia Mason Athletic Center, 12 Seahawks Way, Renton.

The county has invited its fellow members of the Eastside Rail Corridor Regional Advisory Council and other county councilmembers to join them in celebrating the occasion. Other elected officials and city agency representatives have been invited to add their voices to the celebration. Open house activities will include short tours of a Corridor section using a hi-rail vehicle provided by Sound Transit. Snacks and refreshments will be provided.


Public Invited to Port's Meeting on Rail Corridor, Feb 28

As a first step in the transfer of the Kirkland Segment of the Eastside Rail Corridor from the Port of Seattle (Port) to the City of Kirkland, the Port Commission will have a special meeting on Tuesday, February 28, 2012 10:00am at Kirkland City Hall. The purpose of the meeting is to hold a public hearing and consider whether to declare the segment as surplus which is no longer needed for Port district purposes and determine the advisability of the sale of the segment to Kirkland for trail and transportation uses.


Kirkland Votes to Purchase "Kirkland Segment" of the Corridor

Kirkland’s vision for multi-modal transportation, pedestrian connectivity to parks and schools, and bicycle pathways has come closer to reality thanks to the Kirkland City Council unanimously voting to enter into a purchase and sale agreement with the Port of Seattle for 5.75 miles of the Eastside Rail Corridor that lie within Kirkland city limits. At its special meeting on December 12, 2011, after receiving a comprehensive overview presented at a study session, public comment at the regular meeting, and discussing the proposed purchase and sale agreement, the City Council authorized the City Manager to enter into an acquisition agreement with the Port of Seattle, initiating a 60-day due diligence period. Additionally, the Council adopted legislation that provides for the funding for the purchase.

This is an incredible step forward in our vision for the corridor! We congratulate the City Council on making such a bold and far-sighted decision - congratulations!


Rail acquisition to help move along downtown Redmond revitalization plans

Redmond's City Council President Richard Cole and the Port of Seattle's Tay Yoshitani finalized Redmond's acquisition of the BNSF corridor known as the Redmond Spur. Redmond will use their acquisition to help revitalize their downtown and create a regional trail. You can find a drawing of this portion of the corridor on the Redmond Reporter website as well as information about a visioning workshop Redmond will host on July 20th.


Active Transportation for America featured by IssueLab

IssueLab, the website that archives and shares research by nonprofit organizations on a number of social issues, has recently featured the work of Rails-to-Trails Conservancy (RTC).

RTC's report, Active Transportation for America, appears in the special feature "Pedaling and Walking: An IssueLab Closeup," a collection of reports, whitepapers and policy briefs on improving access and infrastructure for cyclists and pedestrians. The report makes the case and quantifies the benefits—for the first time—that increased federal funding in bicycling and walking infrastructure would provide to all Americans.

This is a critical time for RTC's Campaign for Active Transportation, with the Active Community Transportation Act of 2010—authored by U.S. Representative Earl Blumenauer—soon to be introduced on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives. Learn more, and find out how you can help, at:


Port of Seattle announces new partners in rail corridor

In a press release dated Nov. 6, 2009, the Port of Seattle announced it will be joined by several local agencies in preserving the Eastside Rail Corridor and placing it in public ownership. King County, Sound Transit, the City of Redmond, Puget Sound Energy, and the Cascade Water Alliance will partner with the port in maximizing the corridor’s benefit for the region.

The six partners signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) on Thursday that outlines the components of the plan. The governing boards of each organization must also authorize the negotiations. The port’s acquisition of the corridor is scheduled to close Dec. 15.


Sign the Petition

Sign the Eastside Trail Advocates' online petition showing your support for the constuction of a bicycle and pedestrian trail along the Eastside Trail Corridor.


Second PSRC Study Says Commuter Rail to Cost $1.2 Billion

The second PSRC BNSF Eastside Commuter Rail Feasibility Study is in and it states:

“The total capital cost estimate to provide both the proposed commuter rail system and parallel trail is between $1.23 and $1.60 billion (2nd Qtr 2008$).”

As some of you are aware, this $300K/400 page study was essentially a do-over asked for by rail advocates. The second study comes to similar conclusions as the first PSRC study ($800K/400 pages - completed in May of 2007 by a completely different consultant. We have now spent over a million dollars and 800 pages in 2 studies in the last 2 years to tell us what anyone could determine by walking the corridor.

Both reports indicate that the track is in very poor condition and would need to be replaced in order to run commuter rail on it reliably and safely. But track condition is the least of it. There is currently no unified crossing signal system and bridge conditions are suspect (minimally, there would have to be a new bridge built over 405 as the old one was removed for 405's widening). So safety is a big concern.

Real costs reside in trying to fix the geometry and cross section profile of the track. There are 97 curves along the corridor. As a comparison, the Escondido Sprinter in California has 1 curve in it. The geometry of the track has so many curves that the average speed of a commuter train in the BNSF corridor would be 24mph after spending $1.2 billion. Furthermore, the cross section of the track bed reveals steep slopes and embankments along many portions of the track. The costs of cutting and back-filling are expensive. But the costs in this report are actually low because it makes no provisions for any new grade separated crossings. Minimally, grade separated crossings would be needed at NE 8th in Bellevue, 124th in Kirkland, and 139th in Woodinville.


Eastside Trail Advocates is a grass-roots community organization.

We're focused on trail development as a long-term asset for all the citizens of the Puget Sound region. We are comprised of citizens who desperately want an overall reasoned regional transit solution. We are a group of King County taxpayers who want any resources (financial or human) dedicated to the BNSF corridor to be focused on long-term investment, not simply short-term "easy" solutions.

Eastside Trail Advocates participate in advocacy activities at the city, county, regional, and state government levels, as part of the long-term transportation planning process for the Puget Sound region.

We foster partnerships with other advocacy and social organizations targeting similar objectives.

We conduct educational efforts targeted at individuals and communities affected by the BNSF corridor, including neighborhood associations along the corridor.

We lead public outreach initiatives aimed at generating broader community participation in the ongoing evaluation of public use of the BNSF corridor. 


We're now on Facebook!

Be sure to check out our Facebook fan page and keep current on what people are saying about the Eastside Connector Trail.


One resident's take away from the Port's Open House

Read Debra Sinick's write-up of the Port of Seattle's Open House held in Kirkland on July 9th. She offers some great insights on the future of the corridor and what it means to eastside commuters and recreational users. It can be found on Kirkland Views.


107 at-grade crossings

Wonder if 12 commuter trains will cause any congestion during rush hour? See what one train does to traffic at 1:00pm on a Friday afternoon.
Now imagine this happening at 106 more at-grade crossings (for the entire line, that comes to 2568 crossings everyday).


See our Action Center Page or E-mail us for a consolidated listing of e-mail addresses of the many decision makers involved with this issue.

Also let us know if you would like to be on our e-mail list to receive additional information in the future.


Watch this prescient video made in 2007 about the corridor

Disclaimer: ETA was not involved with the creation of this video and we disagree with the narrator when he says it will tens of millions of dollars to fix the track. We think it will take hundreds of millions.