Local Information

First phase of sign work wraps early: SR 99/Aurora Ave. N lanes reopen today

Friday, February 5, 2016 - 10:41


Laura Newborn, Alaskan Way Viaduct Replacement Program communications, 206-805-2871; 206-639-8577 (mobile)



Second phase of work begins next week with much smaller traffic impacts expected

SEATTLE – There is good news for drivers and commuters who travel SR 99/Aurora Avenue North south of the Aurora Bridge: The median lanes in both directions will reopen by early this afternoon - more than a week ahead of schedule. The southbound bus-only lane will also reopen, except at Comstock Street.

“Drivers listened to the warnings about the potential for longer-than-normal delays, and we really appreciate all their efforts,” said David Sowers, deputy administrator of the Alaskan Way Viaduct Replacement Program. “We’re not quite out of the woods yet, so southbound drivers should use caution starting with next Tuesday morning’s commute and watch for merging buses near the new work zone.”

Phase two of the work to build foundations for the signs that will direct drivers to the future SR 99 tunnel will start at 8 p.m. Monday, Feb. 8. This second phase will require a one-block closure of the southbound right lane near Comstock Street while crews construct the final sign foundation near Comstock Street. Buses will merge into the general purpose lane at this location. This should last two to three weeks.

During the first phase of work, contractor crews working for the Washington State Department of Transportation:

  • Cut and removed some 1,600 square feet of pavement 
  • Drilled four large underground shafts for the sign foundations 
  • Installed rebar and poured concrete into the shafts 
  • Cast new concrete median barriers 
  • Installed underground power and communications lines to support electronic messaging systems for the signs

Since buses will merge into the general-purpose lanes for one block during the next phase of work, there may be some backups. WSDOT recommends drivers and bus commuters plan ahead and keep informed by using King County Metro’s rider alerts or trip planning tools as well as WSDOT's travel tools and SDOT’s traveler information page.


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