BELLEVUE – Drivers heading west across Lake Washington should plan ahead for construction and delays Jan. 22-25. Contractor crews working for the Washington State Department of Transportation and Sound Transit will continue upgrading the operations and safety systems inside the Mount Baker and Mercer Island tunnels as part of a project to add new around-the-clock HOV lanes to Interstate 90.
Beginning at 11 p.m. Friday, Jan. 22, the crews will reroute all westbound lanes of Interstate 90 to the express lanes between Bellevue Way Southeast and Rainier Avenue South until 5 a.m. Monday, Jan. 25.
“We’ve completed a lot work of the past year,” said project engineer Aleta Borschowa. “Not all of it is glamorous, and a lot of it is taking place in the ceilings or walls of the tunnels and out of the view of drivers.”
Some of the highlights include placing more than a mile of electrical and fiber optic conduit that will connect to the thousands of holes contractor crews have drilled in the tunnel ceilings for new lights, cameras and fire detection equipment. Crews have also upgraded electrical systems that will power the new and improved tunnel ventilation and safety systems, and built a new emergency access corridor in the westbound Mount Baker Tunnel.
“We’re almost halfway but we have a lot of work to go,” said Borschowa. “We want to make sure that tunnels are ready to keep folks safe and get things ready for light rail.”
Building the new HOV lanes on the outer roadways of I-90 will enable construction of Sound Transit’s 14-mile East Link light rail extension from Seattle to Redmond in the express lanes.
11 p.m. Friday, Jan. 22, until 5 a.m. Monday, Jan. 25
University of Washington women’s basketball at Alaska Airlines Arena
Seattle University men’s basketball at KeyArena
University of Washington men’s basketball at Alaska Airlines Arena
WSDOT needs help from drivers to keep traffic moving
Thousands of vehicles travel across the I-90 floating bridge on a typical weekend. WSDOT needs drivers’ help to prevent regional gridlock during weekend construction work: