$1.9 million to add bike trails, lanes in south county

LYNNWOOD — Three south Snohomish County cities are getting $1.9 million in grants to add new bike trails and bike lanes and connect existing ones.

The project in Lynnwood, Edmonds and Mountlake Terrace is expected to take about three years.

The cities hope to add at least 5.7 miles in bike trails and bike lanes, creating a network of 10 connected miles altogether.

Lynnwood’s parks department applied for the grant from the Verdant Health Commission, a local health and wellness advocacy nonprofit.

They also plan to install more bike-path signs and add bicycle parking at key spots, said Sarah Olson, the Lynnwood parks department’s community programs supervisor.

The project is part of the city’s work to provide people with more opportunities for healthy activities, she said. Previous examples included sidewalk improvements and “walking school bus” programs at Lynnwood Elementary.

The bike trail project aims to establish north-south and east-west corridors by linking stops such as the Edmonds waterfront, Swedish/Edmonds hospital and the Mountlake Terrace and Lynnwood transit centers. They’re working with local bicycle advocacy groups on the project, Olson said.

Studies have shown that more people want to bike in south county, and they would be more likely to do so if they felt safer and more comfortable, she said.

“This is a first step,” she said.

The grant money comes from Verdant’s Building Healthier Communities Fund, spokeswoman Jennifer Piplic said. The fund supports projects that make it easier for people to stay active and healthy.

Rikki King: 425-339-3449; rking@heraldnet.com.

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