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King County approves e-bikes on regional trails

In addition to allowing e-bikes and e-scooters on its regional trails, King County has also approved a study that could keep trails open after dark.

A bike sits just off the edge of a wooded section of the Burke-Gilman trail while a family of three ride by.

The Burke-Gilman trail spans 27 miles across Seattle and other areas of King County.

Photo by TIA International Photography, via Seattle Parks and Rec

Have an e-bike or e-scooter? You can now use it to zip along regional trails now that the Metropolitan King County Council has passed legislation allowing these rides along paths like the Burke-Gilman Trail and Sammamish River Trail.

The change goes into effect later this month, but with some specifications on the bikes allowed. Class 1 and 2 bikes are admitted, but class 3 bikes (which can peak at 28 mph) will continue to be prohibited. The speed limit for these trails will stick at 15 mph regardless of class.

The change comes as the number of residents using e-bikes or e-scooters increases, with 5.1 million share rides taken in 2023.

Some other items included in the legislation are:

  • Approval for a new study that could extend trail opening hours after dark
  • Shorter leash length requirements for dogs
  • Updating criteria the parks director uses to set fees
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