SR 520 Bridge Replacement and HOV Program - News and updates

Nov. 12, 2019 | Rest of the West news

In this update:

Final reminder: online open houses and public comment opportunities open through Wednesday, Nov. 13

Don’t forget! We have several online opportunities to learn about and comment on SR 520 project updates in Seattle.

  • Visit our “Rest of the West” online open house to comment on:
    • Refined design concepts for the Portage Bay Bridge and Roanoke Lid Project, including the bridge design, Roanoke lid, and bicycle/pedestrian connections in the area.
    • Key topics or issues WSDOT should consider to help inform our future public engagement on the Montlake Cut crossing.
  • Look through our Montlake Project online open house to:
    • View the latest design renderings.
    • Learn how the project’s design evolved in collaboration with WSDOT, the Seattle Department of Transportation, and the Seattle Design Commission.
  • Take a public survey on a temporary market or food service in Montlake after the current Montlake Market closes by year’s end.
  • Provide comment on the SR 520/I-5 Project

The two online open houses and public comment opportunities will run through Wednesday, Nov. 13. We look forward to hearing your thoughts!

Two people stand looking at a standing banner. There are many other people standing around talking.

The Oct. 29 SR 520 "Rest of the West" open house.)

Noise variance for SR 520/I-5 Project conditionally granted, now available on city of Seattle website

WSDOT plans to begin construction of the SR 520/I-5 Express Lanes Connection Project  in 2020. Because some of the project work will occur at night, we applied for a Major Public Project Construction Noise Variance (MPPCNV) from the city of Seattle.

Today (Nov. 12), the Seattle Department of Construction and Inspections (SDCI) conditionally granted WSDOT a MPPCNV for the SR 520/I-5 Project. This variance defines the allowable nighttime noise limits of SR 520/I-5 Project construction, identifies measures to minimize nighttime construction noise for neighbors, and requires WSDOT and the selected contractor to meet specific conditions established with the variance. Written appeals may be submitted to the city of Seattle’s hearing examiner during the appeal period, ending at 5 p.m. Nov. 22, 2019. Visit the Seattle Services Portal, project number “002014-19PN”, for information on the noise variance, decision and appeal process. WSDOT’s application can be viewed on the Seattle Services Portal under project number “6733975-NV”.

We have published a questions and answers document (pdf 228 kb) online to provide additional information on this application.

A successful weekend traffic shift

This past weekend crews on the SR 520 Montlake Project worked around the clock to complete the second step of a two-part traffic shift. Crews shifted lanes, placed barriers, and paved and restriped a portion of SR 520. After traffic reopened Monday morning, both eastbound and westbound traffic share the same bridge, with two lanes in each direction.

Construction trucks line the eastbound 520 roadway during a weekend closure.

(Work during the Nov. 9-10 eastbound SR 520 weekend closure.)

This traffic shift will be in place for the next three to four years to allow crews to safely remove and replace the old, structurally vulnerable eastbound bridge. You can read more about this traffic shift and lane reduction in our recent blog article.

For the safety of our crews and the traveling public, we reduced the speed limit in the work zone to 40 miles per hour during construction. Please drive carefully and observe the newly posted speed limit.

Daytime pile driving begins this week for new eastbound bridge

After last weekend’s traffic shift, crews are now able to begin removing the old bridge and constructing the new eastbound SR 520 bridge between Montlake and the SR 520 floating bridge. This work will begin as early as this week. Work will start at the western edge of Lake Washington and move east from there. In the coming weeks, neighbors may notice pile driving, which can be loud and cause vibrations. The noisiest part of the work – pile driving, saw cutting and demolition – will occur during the daytime. We’ll continue to update you on what to expect as the work progresses. If you have any questions or concerns, please call the Montlake Project hotline at 206-775-8885.

A crane lowers a hammer onto a steel pile surrounded by crew members.

(Crews conduct pile driving for the West Approach Bridge North project in 2014.)

Overnight closures this week and next on East Lake Washington Boulevard and Lake Washington Boulevard off-ramp

The westbound SR 520 off-ramp to Lake Washington Boulevard and a segment of the boulevard itself will be closed nightly, Monday through Thursday, for the next two weeks so crews can install a new traffic signal at the corner of 24th Avenue East and East Lake Washington Boulevard. The traffic signal is planned to be activated later this year.

These closures will occur between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m. the nights of Monday, Nov. 11, through Thursday, Nov. 14, and Monday, Nov. 18, through Thursday, Nov. 21. East Lake Washington Boulevard will be closed between 26th Avenue East and Montlake Boulevard during these times, and flaggers will help local residents maneuver through the construction zone to reach their homes. The work may produce some noise and lighting for nearby residents.  More information on this work can be found on our Construction Corner map.

Mark your calendar – next monthly construction meeting Nov. 19

Our Montlake Project contractor, Graham, will host the next monthly Montlake Project construction update meeting on Tuesday, Nov. 19 at the Seattle Yacht Club. We’ll provide a fresh overview of construction progress and a look-ahead at upcoming changes.

Date/time: Tuesday, Nov. 19, 4:45 to 5:30 p.m.
Location: Seattle Yacht Club, 1807 E. Hamlin St., Seattle


Oct. 28, 2019 | Rest of the West news

In this update:

Provide your input about a temporary market or food service during Montlake Project construction

SR 520 Montlake Project construction is in full swing in the Montlake neighborhood. Recognizing that this large construction project requires the closure of the Montlake Market at the end of the year, WSDOT is seeking your input about a potential temporary market or food service that could operate during the three to four years of Montlake Project construction.

Your input will assist WSDOT in implementing a directive the Legislature placed in the 2019-2021 state transportation budget. In response to the directive, WSDOT talked with the Montlake Market's owners about operating a temporary market or food service, but after consideration, the owners declined the opportunity. So we're now seeking your feedback on possible options for using a portion of the current market property for a small business or pop-up operation to serve the neighborhood during Montlake Project construction. Your feedback will help inform WSDOT's process for soliciting interest from potential business operators.

This survey should take only about 3 minutes to complete and is completely anonymous. Survey responses can be submitted through Nov. 13.

Note: We recommend using the latest versions of Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, or Microsoft Internet Explorer for the speediest experience using the SurveyGizmo application. Older browsers may not support full functionality of the survey application.

If you have any questions about this survey, please contact or call 206-770-3554.

Environmental evaluation of SR 520/I-5 Express Lanes Connection Project design

As part of our ongoing evaluation of the SR 520 project, we completed a National Environmental Policy Act reevaluation regarding refinements to the SR 520/I-5 Express Lanes Connection Project design. The October 2019 reevaluation includes an analysis of the design refinements to create reversible transit/HOV access between the I-5 express lanes and Mercer Street. You can view the reevaluation on our website.


How to reach us and stay informed about SR 520 construction:

  • Call the 24-hour construction hotline (206-775-8885) with pressing Montlake Project questions or concerns.
  • Call the SR 520 Program information line (206-770-3554, M-F 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.) with general SR 520 inquiries.
  • Email SR 520 staff with your questions about the project or construction activities.
  • Visit the SR 520 Construction Corner for the most up-to-date information on closures and construction impacts.
  • Visit the SR 520 Program website to find general information about the project.
  • Visit the Montlake Project Information Center at 2209 E. Lake Washington Blvd., open Mondays and Wednesdays from 12 to 6 p.m., Tuesdays and Thursdays from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m., and the third Saturdays of the month from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.
  • Follow us on Twitter @wsdot_520 to get key news and updates about the SR 520 program.
  • Stop by in-person at the Montlake Project Information Center (2209 East Lake Washington Boulevard), open Mondays and Wednesdays noon to 6 p.m., Tuesdays and Thursdays 8 a.m. to noon, and the third Saturday of the month, 9 a.m. to noon.

Get weekly updates via email

Visit the WSDOT email updates page, enter your email address, and under "Construction Reports" select one of the following:

"SR 520 Bridge Replacement and HOV Program"
The email update on the entire program, from I-5 to I-405. Includes information on highway closures, construction milestones, and upcoming public meetings.

"SR 520 Rest of the West News"
Construction is underway on our next stage of construction in Seattle -- the Montlake Project. This update focuses squarely on SR 520 construction activities and other project updates in Seattle.