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I-5 - 196th Street Braided Ramp - What to expect during construction

Much of our work will be completed off the freeway, on the west side of I-5. However, drivers should prepare for overnight lane closures on southbound I-5 and connecting routes such as SR 525, I-405 and SR 524 (196th Street SW).

In addition, drivers should also plan ahead for several major closures and changes to traffic over the two-year project. Please note that these are estimated dates and are subject to change as construction progresses:

  

SR 525 on-ramp and southbound I-5 traffic shift

SR 525 on-ramp lane closure
View full-size graphic (pdf 124 kb)

What’s happening? Crews closed the right lane on the SR 525 on-ramp to southbound I-5 and shifted all traffic into the HOV lane. They also shifted the southbound I-5 lanes toward the median to create a safe work space next to the freeway. All I-5 lanes will remain open during construction.

When? 5 a.m. Friday, Aug. 20 - the ramp will be reduced to one lane of general purpose traffic for at least one year

Why?
Crews need to create a safe work space with room to build the new ramps.

What will WSDOT and the contractor do to keep traffic moving?

  • Use electronic signs, our Web site and the media to alert drivers to the changes and provide updates on traffic flow
  • Monitor traffic flow from the traffic management center and adjust the ramp metering system as needed
  • Restripe southbound SR 525 at the I-405 interchange to move the start of the HOV-only lane to the east. This will reduce weaving near the SR 525 ramp to southbound I-5.

What can you do to avoid delays?

  • If you regularly take the ramp from southbound SR 525 to southbound I-5, consider taking an alternate route or allowing extra time for your trips. We expect heavy congestion during the first few weeks of the closure and traffic shift as drivers adjust to the changes and find alternate routes.
  • Carpools can use on-ramps with HOV-bypass lanes at 164th Street SW, 196th Street SW and 44th Avenue West to access southbound I-5.
  • Drivers on southbound I-5 won’t notice much of a change, though you may experience some additional congestion during the first few weeks of the lane shift.

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Southbound SR 525 and northbound I-405 ramp closures

      SR 525 ramp closure
View full-size graphic for I-405 detour and alternate routes (pdf 566 kb)
View full-size graphic for SR 525 detour and alternate routes (pdf 234 kb)

What’s happening? Crews will close the southbound I-5 on-ramps from southbound SR 525 and northbound I-405 for one weekend.

When? Sept. 23-26, 2011 - The on-ramp from SR 525 will close at 9 p.m. Friday and the on-ramp from I-405 will close at 11 p.m. Friday. Both ramps will remain closed until 5 a.m. Monday, Sept. 26

Why? Crews will connect the new on-ramps to southbound I-5. The existing ramps and the new ramps will be in the same location; crews will build up the new ramps to go over the new exit ramp to 196th Street SW.

What will WSDOT and the contractor do to keep traffic moving?

  • Provide a detour for northbound I-405 using 164th Street SW
  • Provide detours for southbound SR 525 using SR 99 or Alderwood Mall Parkway
  • Assign additional Incident Response crews to the area to assist with roadway incidents
  • Coordinate with the city of Lynnwood to adjust signal timing on alternate routes to keep traffic moving
  • Use electronic signs, our Web site and the media to alert drivers to the closures and provide real-time updates on traffic flow

What can you do to avoid delays?

  • We need 50 percent of drivers on northbound I-405 to find another route in order to avoid significant backups on I-5 and the interchange at 164th Street SW. Drivers on northbound I-405 can use SR 522, SR 527, SR 524 and SR 104 to avoid the closure.
  • Drivers on southbound SR 525 can take southbound SR 99 to 196th Street SW or 220th Street SW to reach southbound I-5.
  • Lynnwood will remain open for business during the closure. If you’re on southbound SR 525, take the exit to Alderwood Mall Parkway to reach the mall or downtown Lynnwood.
  • If you regularly use the 164th Street SW interchange to reach southbound I-5 on the weekends, plan to use a different route during the closure.

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Temporary collector-distributor on southbound I-5

Temporary collector-distributor
View full-size graphic (pdf 397 kb)

What’s happening? A temporary collector-distributor area will separate weaving traffic from mainline southbound I-5.

When? Monday, Sept. 26 - Friday, Sept. 30

Why?
The new on-ramps from I-405 and SR 525 will be open to traffic, but the new off-ramp to 196th Street SW will not be open (drivers will still be able to use the existing off-ramp to 196th Street SW). This will create a shorter weave area for drivers exiting and entering the freeway. To keep traffic safely moving, we will use a painted island and pylons to separate the traffic moving to and from the ramps from the mainline traffic.

What will WSDOT and the contractor do to keep traffic moving?

  • Assign additional Incident Response crews to the area to assist with roadway incidents
  • Provide advance warning signs so drivers know where to go

What can you do to avoid delays?

  • If you’re exiting to 196th Street SW, move into the far right lane.
  • Stay alert as you approach the interchange. Drivers who do not get into the right lane early enough will miss the off-ramp to 196th Street SW and will have to exit at 220th Street SW.
  • If you’re continuing on I-5, use the four left lanes of I-5.
  • Stay alert and use caution through the work zone as drivers adjust to the change.
  • Exiting drivers can use this as a practice time. When we open the new off-ramp to traffic, the beginning of the off-ramp will be nearly half a mile sooner than the existing off-ramp.

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All new ramps open to traffic

Graphic of final configuration     Design visualization of finished project
View overhead graphic of new ramps (pdf 95 kb)
View artist's rendering of new ramps (pdf 411 kb)

When? Sept. 30, 2011 - the new ramp to 196th Street SW will open to traffic at 5 a.m.

Drivers will need to plan for a change, as the new off-ramp is about one mile sooner (farther north) than the old ramp. Drivers who want to exit to 196th Street SW should be in the right lane before they cross under I-405.

The new on-ramp from SR 525 and I-405 will be elevated over the new off-ramp to 196th Street SW. From above, this ramp configuration resembles a braid. Watch an animation (YouTube) showing how the new ramps will look and work.

 
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