Drivers should plan for extra travel time Saturday, July 15, and Sunday, July 16, as 10,000 cyclists ride western Washington’s state highways and local roads for the 2017 Kaiser Permanente Seattle to Portland Bicycle Classic.
WSDOT asks motorists to observe the rules of the road for safe driving around people on bikes and prepare for travel delays during the popular fundraiser ride. As state driving laws periodically change, drivers may want to review the state driver’s guide and the driving among bicyclists section.
Bicyclists should also be aware of their responsibility to follow Washington’s bicyclist rules of the road. The Cascade Bicycle Club distributes a free pocket guide about state bike laws with support from the Share the Road license plate sales.
The STP route follows state highways and local roads in these areas:
· State Route 181 – West Valley Highway in Kent
· Puyallup area county roads and city streets
· SR 7 – near Spanaway
· SR 507 – Roy to Centralia
· SR 507 and 3rd Street – Yelm
· SR 507 and Mossman Street – Yelm
· Centralia and Chehalis city streets
· County roads from Napavine to Winlock to Vader
· SR 506 – Vader area
· Westside Highway (becomes SR 411) Vader to Castle Rock area
· SR 411 (also known as Westside Highway) – Castle Rock to Longview
· SR 432 – Longview Industrial area
· SR 433 – Crossing Lewis and Clark Bridge into Oregon
Based on previous STP rides, congestion and delays are expected:
· Early morning Saturday, July 15, on SR 7 in Pierce County
· Midmorning to afternoon, Saturday, July 15, on SR 507 in Thurston and Lewis counties
· Early Sunday, July 16, on SR 411 from Castle Rock to Kelso
· All day Sunday, July 16, near the SR 432 and SR 433 Lewis and Clark Bridge between Longview, Washington and Rainier, Oregon
To aid cyclists and drivers, STP organizers, WSDOT and law enforcement have worked together to direct traffic at the following locations:
Saturday, July 15
· SR 507 between Roy and Yelm (roving Washington State Patrol trooper)
· SR 507/ Third Street in Yelm (police officers directing traffic)
· SR 507/Mossman Street in Yelm (police officer directing traffic)
· SR 507/Tenino Trail crossing (police officers or certified flaggers directing traffic)
Sunday, July 16
· SR 411/Castle Rock area (flagger directing traffic at SR 411/ Public Highway 10)
· SR 411 between Castle Rock and Longview (roving WSP trooper)
· SR 411/Lexington/Riverside County Park area (police officers directing traffic at SR 411 and Riverside County Park)
· SR 432/433 in Longview at the Lewis and Clark Bridge (WSP, flaggers and motorcycle escort)
Drivers on SR 432 can expect delays of up to 20 minutes from 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., Sunday, July 16. WSP and flaggers will stop southbound drivers on SR 433 so STP riders can cross the Lewis and Clark Bridge, escorted by Gold Wing motorcycle club members. Riders crossing the bridge on Saturday will not have a bridge escort and are expected to ride with traffic.
Major bicycle events like the STP are part of Washington’s outdoor recreation economy. A 2014 study found that bicycling contributes over $3.1 billion per year in direct expenditures in Washington state. In 2016, Congress passed a law to track outdoor recreation as a specific element of GDP, reflecting its role in the national economy.