Alert: 3rd Ave W closed between W Dravus & W Florentia this weekend
This weekend, SDOT will be excavating and paving on 3rd Ave W between W Dravus St and W Florentia St. The joint SDOT & SPU work will take place between 7am and 7pm on Saturday, December 3rd, and Sunday, December 4th.
King County Metro Route 13 will not service 3rd Ave W this weekend, instead it will be rerouted to Queen Anne Ave N between W McGraw and W Nickerson St. Details on stops and the reroute are here.
Here’s what else to expect with this work:
- 3rd Ave W closed to traffic in both directions between W Dravus St and W Florentia St
- There will be no parking in the work zone
- Detours will be in place
- Flaggers and uniformed police officers will assist with traffic control
- Travelers may enter and exit driveways on 3rd Ave W but may have to wait for equipment to clear.
Plan ahead for alternate routes to get up and down the north side of the hill this weekend.
Confirmation: The Mercer Mess is… still a mess
Taylor & Mercer gridlock at 3pm…
Today, the Puget Sound Business Journal published an article on the Mercer Mess. Not the old Mercer Mess, but rather the current Mercer Mess. After spending $74 million for improvements to the Mercer corridor, data from TomTom shows that Mercer traffic is no better than it was two years ago.
According to PSBJ:
“Peak morning congestion, between 6 a.m. and 9 a.m., on the 1.74-mile stretch of Mercer Street from Elliott Avenue to Interstate 5 has improved by two seconds since 2014, according to TomTom data.”
The City plans to spend $1 million to improve the light timing on Mercer, but according to KIRO, the City “acknowledged that would not speed up commute times” – so don’t expect any improvements anytime soon…
Seattle Public Utilities will work on 3rd Ave W groundwater issue this Saturday
We’ve had several readers write in or tweet to us about the ongoing stream of water along 3rd Ave W near the Queen Anne Bowl. Aegis construction crews identified the water seepage issue as a Seattle Public Utilities problem.
To try and reduce the groundwater that is surfacing along 3rd Ave W, Seattle Public Utilities will be working on the area this Saturday from 7am to 7pm. The work may impact traffic, reducing 3rd Ave W to one lane for the day. A flagger will be on hand to direct traffic and parking will be restricted.
SPU will clean and inspect the groundwater pipes at the location, with the goal of reducing the constant stream of water. Thanks to SPU for responding to the issue, let’s hope the work reduces or, even better, stops the excess water flow.
Traffic Alert: Portion of 6th Ave W closed to traffic this weekend for repaving project
We’ve had readers asking about the signs that have gone up on 6th Ave W, notifying residents of a road closure this weekend between W Crockett St and W Howe St.
Per our SDOT contact, this portion of 6th Ave W will be closed to traffic between 7am and 5pm both Saturday, June 25th, and Sunday, June 26th.
Here’s the info you need to know, directly from SDOT:
SDOT advises travelers that crews will close 6th Ave West between W Crockett Street and W Howe Street for grinding and paving this weekend. This work is weather dependent.
From 7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., on Saturday, June 25 and Sunday, June 26, 6th Ave W will be closed from W Crockett St to W Howe St:
– 6th Ave W will be closed to thru traffic, only Metro buses will have thru access
– Bus stops on 6th Ave W at W Howe and at W Crockett will be closed during paving
– All crosswalks and sidewalks will remain open
– No Parking signs will be in place
– Detour signs will be in place for 6th Ave W
– Southbound travelers head west on W Crockett, south on 7th Ave W, east on W Blaine St, back to 6th Ave W.
– Northbound travelers head west on W Blaine St, north on 7th Ave W, east on W Crockett, back to 6th Ave W.
This project is part of SDOT’s 2016 Arterial Major Maintenance (AMM) program. The AMM program maintains our busiest streets by making strategic small scale investments at key locations on city streets.
Rock’n’Roll Marathon means road closures this Saturday
The annual Rock’n’Roll Marathon is this Saturday, June 18th, with a race start at the Seattle Center. That means early morning crowds at the Seattle Center and on surrounding streets. Plus, plenty of street closures to be aware of if you need to leave Queen Anne. Good news? The race ends at CenturyLink Field this year, not the Seattle Center.
SDOT advises drivers to stay off local roads early Saturday morning due to detours and associated delays. In addition to the crowds and detours on Lower Queen Anne/Uptown, all northbound lanes of 99 through downtown (the Viaduct) will be closed from 5am to 9:45am, along with several I5 and I90 on- and off-ramps.
Here are the details from SDOT, with a race map below:
SR 99 closure details
- Northbound SR 99 from South Hudson Street to Roy Street.
I-5 ramp closures
- The northbound and southbound I-5 off-ramps to South Dearborn Avenue.
- The South Dearborn Avenue on-ramps to northbound and southbound I-5.
I-90 ramp closures
- The eastbound and westbound I-90 off-ramps to Rainier Avenue South.
- The southbound Rainier Avenue South on-ramp to eastbound I-90.
I-90 express lanes closure details
- The I-90 express lanes will close at 3 a.m. The lanes will open westbound by 2:30 p.m.
A full list of road closures is provided in a tabular format here.
Memorial Day weekend brings Northwest Folklife back to the Seattle Center
A reminder to those who’ve lived here for a while and a heads up to newcomers: Northwest Folklife Festival is this weekend, and that’ll bring crowds, traffic, and festival-ness to our neighborhood.
Folklife runs from Friday, May 27th to Monday, May 30th at the Seattle Center. Festival hours are 11am to 10pm, except for Monday, when the event closes up at 9pm.
Folklife celebrates a wide range of arts and cultural activities, with performances that include dancing, poetry readings, films, storytelling, musical acts, and more. Last year, Folklife featured 133 community showcases, 5,000 performers on 25 stages, 160 street performers, 90 hours of participatory dance, a Kid’s Discovery Zone, and roughly 235,000 attendees. You can get the full schedule of events for this year’s Folklife Festival here.
The City estimates that Folklife will bring 60,000 people to our neighborhood each day. Plan ahead, secure your parking spot, and be patient with the influx of people and traffic that comes along with them.
Viaduct to be open by Monday morning
You can breathe a sign of relief and perhaps the extra-heavy Mercer traffic will ease a bit. The Viaduct will be opening early after being closed for Bertha tunneling. Drivers can expect the Viaduct to be open starting tomorrow morning, Monday, May 9th.
Here’s the scoop from WSDOT:
Alaskan Way Viaduct to reopen for Monday morning commute
Washington DOT Posted on May 8 2016 2:07 PM
After 10 days of around-the-clock tunneling, Bertha’s biggest hurdle is now behind her. That hurdle – the Alaskan Way Viaduct she was built to replace – will reopen for the Monday morning commute, bringing an early end to the much-anticipated closure.
Structural engineers with the Washington State Department of Transportation completed a thorough inspection of the viaduct on Sunday. Their inspection confirmed what a team of engineers observed throughout the past 10 days of tunneling: continued stability of the ground and the viaduct.
By Friday, the machine had successfully tunneled through complex soils only 15 feet below the viaduct’s foundation – the closest the machine will come to any structure at any point in its drive beneath Seattle. On Sunday, STP completed installation of the rings beneath this critical location, clearing the way for the final inspection and the early opening of the highway. WSDOT’s 24-hour command center will remain open until the machine has successfully tunneled 385 feet, the distance at which it will be completely clear of the viaduct.
Seattle Tunnel Partners has installed 47 rings and excavated 312 feet of the approximately 385 feet of tunnel to be completed beneath the Alaskan Way Viaduct. Crews continue to work around the clock to tunnel, build rings and perform ongoing machine maintenance.
WSDOT worked closely with Seattle Department of Transportation, Seattle Police Department, King County Metro, King County Water Taxi, Sound Transit, Community Transit and the Port of Seattle to keep traffic moving and provide travel options during the closure.
We are extremely grateful to those commuters that shifted their travel routes and timing during the Alaskan Way Viaduct closure. Every person that chose alternate transportation helped to reduce traffic regionally. Thank you for all your efforts.
Carmageddon starts tonight when 99 shuts down for 2 weeks
If you haven’t heard the news, surprise! 99 is going to shut down starting tonight for 2 weeks. 99 will be closed at 12:01am Friday, April 29, between South Spokane Street and the south end of the Battery Street Tunnel.
Will it be bad? Remember the fish truck incident on 99? And, consider that 99 is the preferred route for 90,000 cars each day. Even with preparations and a heads up, traffic will be bad. It’s still unclear how it will affect Queen Anne, but don’t be surprised if there are extra cars on the surface streets and Elliott/15th Ave W.
Here’s the official news from WSDOT:
Alaskan Way Viaduct closes Friday – It’s not too late to make a plan
SEATTLE – On-ramps to the State Route 99/Alaskan Way Viaduct will begin closing at 10 p.m. tonight, Thursday, April 28, and the road will be fully closed at 12:01 a.m. Friday, April 29, between South Spokane Street and the south end of the Battery Street Tunnel.
The Washington State Department of Transportation urges all drivers to consider alternate commutes as the closure takes 90,000 vehicles off one of Seattle’s two north/south highways. The website 99closure.org has resources and ideas for commuters throughout the Puget Sound region.
“Whether you drive or take the bus or train, everyone should have a backup plan,” said Dave Sowers, WSDOT Alaskan Way Viaduct deputy program administrator. “And make sure you have a plan for the weekend as well. Seattle has Mariners games, a Sounders game and Sunday’s May Day activities all scheduled this weekend.”
WSDOT, the Seattle Department of Transportation, King County Metro and many other public agencies are working together to help lessen the effects of the closure. They will provide real-time traffic monitoring, police officers at key intersections to keep traffic moving, additional water taxi runs, additional response vehicles to clear accidents and more.
Tips to create a viaduct closure plan:
The SR 99 tunneling machine Bertha will build more than 350 feet of tunnel past Yesler Way to clear all the foundations of the viaduct. WSDOT is closing the road to better monitor the structure and avoid any unplanned closures.
Traffic Alert: Bruce Springsteen at Key Arena tonight and Sakura-Con this weekend
Heads up if you have plans that involve navigating around Key Arena tonight, Thursday, March 24th – Bruce Springsteen will be performing at the Key, with doors opening at 6pm.
The show begins at 7:30pm, so expect crowds during rush hour and again when the concert lets out late in the evening (10:30-11pm).
SDOT has not provided a number for estimated attendees, but it’ll number in the thousands. Expect impacts on both traffic and parking around Lower Queen Anne/Uptown.
A second heads up: Sakura-Con is at the Washington State Convention Center tomorrow, Friday, March 25th through Sunday, March 27th. This anime convention is incredibly popular, with over 20,000 people expected each day, many will likely hop over to the Seattle Center to see the sights.
Several weeks of Aurora lane closures begin Monday, January 18th
Back in December, we first gave the heads up on the upcoming Aurora Ave N lane closures that will surely impact traffic on both Aurora and Queen Anne. The closures begin the evening of next Monday, January 18th, and WSDOT estimates that the lane closures will take “several” weeks, with estimates from 4-8 weeks. Each direction of Aurora will have one lane closed through potentially March (timetable below).
SDOT is emphasizing the following warning to drivers:
“While two lanes in each direction of SR 99 between Highland Drive and the Aurora Bridge will remain OPEN during peak commute hours, buses and vehicles will share the bus-only lane. We anticipate the possibility of backups and are urging commuters to use all the tools available to them from WSDOT, SDOT and Metro to stay informed about current traffic conditions once the extended lane closures start. In addition, we want to ask drivers to consider commuting/traveling in off-peak hours or telecommute if that’s an option available to them.”
Why the closure? Sign foundations with communication lines, power lines, and traffic sensors to provide alerts for the future tunnel. This work requires access to the median lanes of Aurora.
Here are the closure details & timetable from WSDOT:
Jan. 18 through mid-February
- Median lanes close in both directions between the Aurora Bridge and Highland Drive
- An additional lane will close at night and during several weekends including Jan. 23-24
Mid-February through early March
- Median lanes reopen. Northbound traffic returns to normal pattern
- The southbound curb lane near Comstock Street will close for approximately three weeks
- An additional southbound lane may close at night
WSDOT is encouraging drivers and bus riders to plan ahead as additional congestion is expected on Aurora. For those of us on Queen Anne, expect more non-local traffic in the neighborhood, especially on the arterials and East Queen Anne.