The public will get its first chance to learn about the Totem Lake Pedestrian Connector Bridge during an open house on Thursday, Feb. 2 at the Kirkland Justice Center. The drop-in style open house begins at 6 p.m. and continues until 8 p.m.
“This is really the public’s chance to learn about the bridge’s background, its scope and some of the design challenges we are anticipating,” said Aaron McDonald, the City of Kirkland project engineer assigned to the bridge’s design.
The City is seeking community input for the design of a bicycle and pedestrian bridge that will connect two sections of the Totem Lake Urban Center and the two ends of the Cross Kirkland Corridor, currently separated by Northeast 124th Street and Totem Lake Boulevard. The February 2 open house will be the first of three the design team plans to host during the design process which is expected to be complete by summer 2018. “However, we will be reaching out to the public through a variety of forums,” McDonald said. “We’ll be using the project’s webpage to share information with the public and to glean feedback from the public.”
As it is now, to get from one side of the Cross Kirkland Corridor to the other, 230 feet away, currently requires nearly four minutes and a willingness to navigate one of Kirkland’s busiest intersections. For that reason, many people avoid the crossing.
“It’s difficult,” said Finn Hill resident Beriah Osorio “Too many lights. Too many intersections. Too many cars making left-hand turns; right-hand turns and not paying attention to you in the crosswalk.”
The bridge will resolve this problem, while connecting Totem Lake Park and the new malls to the Cross Kirkland Corridor, which King County plans to extend along the Eastside Rail Corridor all the way to Woodinville’s wine country.
“We’ll make sure the engineering is sound,” said Kirkland City Manager Kurt Triplett. “We’ll make sure the bridge does its job. But to bring it to life, we really need the community’s input.”
Specifically, Kirkland’s leaders are asking the community to help them design a bridge that could serve as an icon and gateway of the city.
“We want to make this a special place in Kirkland,” Triplett said.
The public is welcome to attend any time between 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. at the Kirkland Justice Center located at 11750 NE 118th Street in the Totem Lake Room. For more information on the project contact Christian Knight at (425) 587-3831 or search “Totem Lake Pedestrian Bridge” on www.kirklandwa.gov.