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SR 520 Bridge Program Monthly E-mail Update

Updated Jan. 3, 2011

Final SR 520 workgroup reports sent to governor, legislators

We sent two final reports to the governor and state legislators Dec. 22 outlining mitigation improvements in the Washington Park Arboretum and recommendations for future high capacity transit planning and financing for SR 520. This completes our requirements from Senate Bill 6392, which directed WSDOT to work with several partner agencies to complete three reports:

  • High Capacity Transit Planning and Financing (New!)
  • Washington Park Arboretum Mitigation Plan (New!)
  • Design Refinements and Transit Connections (submitted October 2010)

These reports are available online.

We have more steps ahead of us. The arboretum mitigation plan will guide further development of the final environmental impact statement for the I-5 to Medina project scheduled for release in spring 2011. WSDOT will continue to work with transit agencies on future transit operations and planning for the SR 520 corridor.

Environmental report completed for SR 520 pontoon project

We’re another step closer to building concrete pontoons for a replacement SR 520 floating bridge. We have published a final environmental impact statement (EIS) for the Pontoon Construction Project in Grays Harbor, where 33 pontoons will be built.

Construction on a casting basin is planned to start in spring 2011, and pontoons will be built through 2014.

Proposals for new SR 520 floating bridge requested from three teams

The clock has started for three prequalified teams interested in designing and building the new SR 520 floating bridge, a contract estimated to cost $600 million to $750 million. The teams have until spring to submit bids and proposals. A team will be selected in mid-2011. Construction is scheduled to begin in 2012 and a new bridge will open to traffic by the end of 2014.
What’s in the contract? The central piece is a new six-lane floating bridge with transit/HOV lanes and a bicycle/pedestrian path. To support the floating bridge and tie it to the lakebed, the contract also calls for building 44 supplemental pontoons and 58 anchors, and using 33 other pontoons to be built in Grays Harbor by Kiewit-General Joint Venture. Stormwater treatment also is planned as part of the new bridge, as is building an east approach connection and a new maintenance facility and dock on the east shore of Lake Washington.

Comment on SR 520 toll rates through Jan. 5

The state Transportation Commission held two meetings this week to hear input on proposed toll rates for SR 520. Comments can be made through Jan. 5, and information is posted on the commission website. A final hearing is scheduled 6:30 p.m., Jan. 5, in the Sound Transit Board Room at Union Station, 401 S. Jackson St., Seattle. You also can visit our website if you have questions about how tolling will work on SR 520.

Lanes open on SR 520 in Redmond!

If you drive SR 520 all the way into Redmond, you’ve likely seen the new paint, signs and lanes in the eastbound direction between West Lake Sammamish Parkway and Avondale Road. And if you drive this stretch we expect that your commute has improved as well. We doubled the number of lanes from two to four in each direction for more than a mile, improvements estimated to shave about 15 minutes off your commute.
The new HOV lanes are providing a significant benefit to those who carpool, vanpool or take the bus. Check out our website for more information, or drop us a note if you’ve noticed the difference in your evening commute.