The Cheshiahud Trail wraps smoothly around Lake Union except for one missing link: the section between Edgar and Hamlin on Fairview Ave. E. To make the connection, a pedestrian or cyclist must trudge up Edgar to Eastlake and down Hamlin (or vice-versa), both steep east-west streets that run down to the water from a busy arterial.
Some of the block between Hamlin and Edgar is public right of way. The street right-of-way actually extends from Hamlin to within about 50 feet of Edgar Street End Park, an undeveloped park overrun with bamboo and blackberry. The shoreline of property at 10 E. Edgar is half on the city right-of-way. A permit for the dock (mostly on city right-of-way) is renewed every September, but the city does not review the permit for possible violations. At present, large concrete blocks are stored on city property behind a gate and fence that also intrude on city property. There is no permit for this storage; the city issued a stop-work order last year when the blocks were delivered, possibly for building a new bulkhead, but they have not been removed.
If the blocks, fence and gate were moved, the city could require an easement to connect the city right-of-way with Edgar Street End and build a stairway for pedestrians and cyclists. The city has already approved a construction permit to build the stairway but has not funded it. If this connection were made, it would complete the Cheshiahud loop and reduce the incentive for cyclists to stay on Eastlake and add their names to the list of cyclist fatalities in Seattle.