I-405 Express Toll Lanes - Improvements

WSDOT is listening to feedback from express toll lane drivers to help improve express toll lane experience and performance. While some adjustments are still under evaluation, others have already been implemented.

We want to hear from you.



Completed adjustments

  1. SB I-405 at NE 160th St. - Added skip stripes to better define the start of second express toll lane and inside general purpose lane. (Oct. 1, 2015)
  2. NB I-405 at NE 6th St. - Added clarifying pavement markings to eliminate driver confusion and extended existing access point. (Dec. 18, 2015)
  3. SB I-405 at SR 527 - Lengthened access point to the north to allow drivers more time to merge into and out of the express toll lanes. (Dec. 18, 2015; June 2, 2016)
  4. NB I-405 at I-5 - Lengthened access point to allow drivers additional time to merge to I-5. (Jan. 22, 2016)
  5. NB I-405 access at SR 527 - Lengthened access point to allow drivers additional time to merge in and out of the express toll lanes. (Jan. 22, 2016)
  6. Entire corridor
     Made changes to the algorithm which calculates toll rates to respond to the demand for the lanes and to keep the express toll lanes moving. (Ongoing)
    - *Opened the express toll lanes to all traffic 7 p.m. to 5 a.m Monday through Friday, on weekends, and on designated holidays. (March 18, 2016)
  7. SB I-405 at NE 6th St. - Added pavement markings to clarify for drivers the exit to NE 6th St. and which lane continues onto I-405 southbound. (Feb. 25, 2016)
  8. NB I-405 at SR 520 - Lengthened access point and changed from weave lane to skip stripe to provide more open access to the express toll lanes. This will improve general purpose congestion in the SR 520 interchange area during afternoon commutes and weekends. (March 18, 2016)
  9. NB at NE 160th St. - Adding additional signage and lengthening access point to provide driver clarity and more time to merge to SR 522. (April 17, 2016)
  10. NB at NE 85th St. - Adjust the access length to provide more open access to the express toll lane. (May 31, 2016)
  11. SB SR 522 to NE 160th St. - Adjust access to address demand during morning peak commute. (April 17, 2016)

* Weight restrictions are in place at all times.



Continue to monitor corridor traffic patterns and operations at these locations:

  1. SB NE 70th Pl to SR 520 - We evaluated several modifications at this location and determined that changing the access to mirror northbound, or other configurations, would further slow the general purpose lanes and reduce speeds in the express toll lanes. That said, we will continue to look for opportunities for improvements at this location.
  2. SB approaching NE 132nd St. - Convert to allow access in and out of express toll lanes. Currently drivers are only able to enter.

Approved projects

     15. NB I-405 between SR 527 and I-5 - Add a general purpose peak use shoulder lane (also known as hard shoulder running) on northbound I-405 from SR 527 to I-5.
          - Timeline: Construction funded by I-405 toll revenue in summer 2016. Expected to open to traffic by summer 2017.
          - Cost: $11.5 million

Evaluating future projects

WSDOT is starting detailed engineering or traffic analysis on the future projects listed below. Some of this work would need to be done to better understand costs and phasing opportunities for all options. Additional funding has been provided by the Legislature to allow WSDOT to better define the project’s scope including the environmental needs and to conduct a practical design review of the larger capacity improvement projects for #16 below.

  1. NB I-405 between SR 520 and NE 70th Pl. - Add northbound auxiliary lane between SR 520 and NE 70th Pl.
    - Timeline: Environmental document needed, 1-3 years open to traffic after funding approved. This timeline depends upon environmental impacts.
    - Cost: $15 million depending on existing constraints.

     ​16. NB and SB 3 lane section between SR 522 and I-5 - Evaluate options to address limited capacity in section of I-405 with three lanes.

          - Timeline: Report back in 2016.
          - Cost: Study includes developing cost estimates