WSDOT wants to make sure you know about the big Highway 99 closure starting Friday night

August 19th, 2014 Tracy Posted in alaskan way viaduct, Traffic, White Center news No Comments »

Important reminder – if you use Highway 99 between the West Seattle Bridge and lower Queen Anne, a two-phase closure starting this Friday night WILL affect you. Here are the newest details/reminders from WSDOT:

A portion of State Route 99 closes for four full days starting this Friday. If drivers have not already made plans for this closure, now is the time to do so.

The Washington State Department of Transportation will close both directions of SR 99 between South Spokane Street and Valley Street from 10 p.m. Friday, Aug. 22, until 5 a.m. Monday, Aug. 25. Crews will reopen SR 99 south of the Battery Street Tunnel just before the Monday morning commute; however, the highway will remain closed through the tunnel to Valley Street until 5 a.m. Wednesday, Aug. 27.

“We need Seattle commuters to plan ahead for this closure,” said Dave Sowers, deputy administrator for the WSDOT Alaskan Way Viaduct Replacement Program. “The section of 99 we’re closing Monday and Tuesday is shorter in length than what we’re closing that weekend, but it has the potential to create longer backups and delays both on city streets and I-5.”

Seahawks traffic considerations
· Northbound SR 99 will be open from South Royal Brougham Way and southbound SR 99 will be open from Columbia Street until midnight Friday, Aug. 22, for traffic related to the Seahawks’ preseason game.

Why a four-day closure is needed
· It will take four days for contractor crews working for WSDOT to demolish and replace the section of SR 99 over Broad Street. This new section of the highway will become part of the permanent connection between the SR 99 tunnel’s north portal and a new surface street section of Aurora Avenue North.
· Four days are also necessary for crews to reroute the water and sewer lines underneath SR 99 near Harrison Street.
· During the weekend portion of the closure, contractor crews will replace 81 damaged or cracked concrete road panels that comprise the SR 99 lanes between South Spokane and South Holgate streets. They will also repair an expansion joint at the northbound SR 99 exit to Seneca Street.

Closure details (view closure maps)
· At 10 p.m. Friday, Aug. 22, crews will close both directions of SR 99 between South Spokane Street and Valley Street. However, due to the Seahawks game, northbound SR 99 will remain open at South Royal Brougham way and southbound SR 99 will remain open from the Columbia Street on-ramp until midnight.
· At 5 a.m. Monday, Aug. 25, crews will reopen both directions of SR 99 south of the Battery Street Tunnel. Both directions of SR 99 will remain closed between the south end of the tunnel and Valley Street.
· At 5 a.m. Wednesday, Aug. 27, crews will reopen both directions of SR 99 between the south end of the Battery Street Tunnel and Valley Street.

Driver tips
· Allow plenty of extra travel time.
· Leave early or delay your trip to avoid traveling during peak commute periods in the morning and afternoon.
· Delay or reschedule discretionary trips.
· Consider telecommuting.
· Take King County Metro during off peak hours and plan for reroutes on buses that use SR 99, or share a ride in a car or vanpool.
· If you must drive, know before you go and use WSDOT’s travel tools.

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Seattle Mayoral Candidate Mike McGinn A One Song Bird: Gut the Viaduct Plan – Editorial by Ricardo A. Guarnero

September 16th, 2009 Ricardo Posted in alaskan way viaduct, development, Election, Government, Politics, Traffic, Transportation, white center 11 Comments »

It appears that Seattle Mayoral Candidate, Mike McGinn has staked his campaign on one issue, gutting the viaduct tunnel plan carefully negotiated by all the relevant players.  If he wins, he has stated, he will view his victory as a mandate to undo the viaduct replacement plan.  In its stead, McGinn has promised more busses, sidewalks and bike paths.  As someone who regularly commutes on the viaduct it’s hard for me to see how more sidewalks and bikepaths is going to make my commute any easier.  Oh, yeah, and McGinn says he wants to use light rail to replace the viaduct.  Geez, I didn’t know that Sound Transit was planning a light rail leg for West Seattle and White Center.  Wait, there is no light rail leg for West Seattle.  So if McGinn is elected we can expect protracted delays on replacing the viaduct, procuring boatloads of money and the decade’s long process of what:  extending the light rail line to West Seattle.  No problema.  I’ll take the tunnel.  It’s clear that McGinn does not live in West Seattle nor does he use the viaduct to commute.

What is particularly disingenuous, is McGinn’s claim that the tunnel option was voted down by Seattle voters.  This is simply not true.  A tunnel option which would have meant tearing down the viaduct and digging up a tunnel was rejected.  The deep bore tunnel that is currently planned would leave the viaduct in place while the tunnel gets built, saving West Seattleites years of aggravating surface detours.  This option was negotiated because it provides the most mobility and least interference while it is getting built.  What McGinn is proposing would set us back a decade and have us revisit the viaduct replacement options once again.  Recall how all this useless process killed the monorail (we had to vote on it three times).  And in the meantime, we have to hope that a seismic event doesn’t make the whole thing hollow by bringing down the decrepit structure.  Busses, bikes and sidewalks, Oh My!

McGinn’s ill-defined plans for the viaduct are enough to nix the guy in my book.  Add to that, the fact that he has never held electoral office, that most of his policy positions lack any specificity and you have a feel-good kind of guy that you might pick for your soccer team, but not a mayor for a major city.  Seattle needs better.  I’m not crazy about Joe Mallahan, but he at least seems considerably more grounded on policies.  We have already had a couple of amateurs embarrass the City.  It’s time to let the grown ups proceed with real policies grounded in reality.

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3 Saturday notes: Viaduct, Westwood Village, and … Christmas

June 27th, 2009 Tracy Posted in alaskan way viaduct, Westwood Village, White Center news Comments Off

VIADUCT: This is a good day to not leave home, period. The biggest reason: The Alaskan Way Viaduct is closed most of the day for the Rock N Roll Seattle Marathon. 4 am to 4 pm — the hours may wind up varying somewhat, but that’s the original warning, both directions.

WESTWOOD VILLAGE: One way to avoid leaving the area is to enjoy activities like today’s Westwood Village Street Fair, just north of White Center. We’ll be there representing West Seattle Blog and White Center Now with “live” reporting including photos and video. Free food, music, entertainment, giveaways and more are set to happen at the shopping center 11 am-7 pm; find a schedule here.

CHRISTMAS … IN JUNE: We missed this when it happened a few days ago but are glad to happen onto word of it now: The YES Foundation of White Center visited two schools on the last day of classes to send kids home with gifts to help them enjoy summer, and even raffled off 8 bikes. More info here; photos here.

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“Expanded” park and ride in White Center and Burien, under one of two newly released Viaduct scenarios

December 11th, 2008 Tracy Posted in alaskan way viaduct, Transportation, White Center news 1 Comment »

At West Seattle Blog, we have running coverage (see it here) from the briefing at which the two “finalist” scenarios for the Alaskan Way Viaduct central waterfront section have just been unveiled to state, county, and city leaders. At least one of the scenarios also includes: “Park and rides would be expanded in Burien, White Center, and Shoreline.” Much more information to come. ADDED 4:21 PM: The “expanded park and ride” for White Center is mentioned in BOTH scenarios that now are under active consideration – “surface/transit” and “elevated bypass.”

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