Milepost 31 marks four years, 50,000 visitors
For being Seattle’s “most boring” exhibit, Milepost 31 sure is popular. December marks the four-year anniversary of the information center, which blends information about the SR 99 Tunnel Project with the history of Seattle’s Pioneer Square neighborhood. In addition to recently welcoming the center’s 50,000th visitor, Milepost 31 staff have led hundreds of tours to see SR 99 tunnel construction, and hosted educational programs for school groups and youth organizations.
So what’s the big draw? Exhibits include soil samples, tunneling equipment, and a 10-foot-long interactive model of Bertha, the world’s largest tunneling machine. Milepost 31 also offers free guided tours that include a trip to an otherwise-restricted viewing platform overlooking the tunnel construction site. Thousands of visitors have taken this tour to see SR 99 tunnel construction and learn how the project will reconnect Pioneer Square to the waterfront.
A monthly speaker series during the First Thursday Pioneer Square Art Walk provides further insight into the project and the neighborhood. December’s speaker series event features guest speaker David B. Williams, who will discuss how early Seattleites altered the landscape in and near Pioneer Square, and how those changes still influence the city today.
Milepost 31 was created as part of the Alaskan Way Viaduct Replacement Program’s commitment to keep the neighborhood vital during construction. Located at 211 First Ave. S., the center is open Tuesdays through Saturdays from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., and stays open until 8 p.m. on First Thursdays. Go here to book a tour or learn more.
Milepost 31 features an interactive model of Bertha, the SR 99 tunneling machine.