Transportation and construction updates

Sound Transit Photo of the Week for May 15
Sound Transit Photo of the Week for May 15
Getting ready for service Air flow testing, which included disbursing smoke to visualize air movements, was completed this week at the underground Beacon Hill Station. If needed, the station’s emergency ventilation fans can move 880,000 cubic feet of air per minute. Additional “jet fans” at the portals offer additional capacity to remove smoke and maintain a safe environment for Link passengers in an emergency. Link passenger service begins July 18.
Some transportation and construction issues you might wish to keep in mind in the upcoming days and weeks:

I-5 Reduced to One Lane for Re-striping

On Saturday, May 16 at 9:30 p.m. crews working for Sound Transit will begin reducing northbound lanes on I-5 between S. Spokane Street and Olive Way. Drivers should plan ahead and expect delays. This work is being done in preparation for the University Link Light Rail construction which includes closing the Olive Way off-ramp on Monday, May 18.

Drivers should expect to see the first lane closure on northbound I-5 at 9:30 p.m., the second at 10:30 p.m., the third lane closure at 11:30 p.m., with all traffic shifted to the far right lane by midnight. All northbound lanes of I-5 will reopen by 6 a.m. on Sunday, May 17.

Crews will also close ramps to and from downtown Seattle on northbound I-5. The University Street on-ramp will close at 9:00 p.m., the Cherry Street on-ramp at 10:00 p.m and the Seneca and 4th Ave off-ramps at midnight. All ramps will reopen by 6 a.m. the following morning. Drivers should follow the signed detour during the closure.

For more information about this project, contact Erin Hunter at (888) 298-2395 or

Project information online:

S. Spokane Street Viaduct Project

There is currently a temporary closure (approximately seven weeks) between Airport Way South and 6th Avenue South on South Spokane Street, to allow placement of a water quality vault underneath the Spokane Street Viaduct. This surface closure does not affect vehicles approaching Spokane Street from northbound I-5 (via exit 163) or from Beacon Hill (via S Columbian Way). Vehicles from these directions will make a slight jog to the left as they proceed west through the intersection at Sixth Avenue South.

Eastbound lower Spokane Street remains closed between First and Sixth Avenues, with a detour route north on First or Fourth to Lander. This eastbound closure will continue into mid-2010, although the section between the E-3 Busway and Sixth Avenue S will reopen this summer.

Click here for more information

SR 519 Intermodal Access Project

In this WSDOT project, crews are building a bridge over the railroad tracks on Royal Brougham Way and connecting a new off-ramp from I-90 and I-5 to the Edgar Martinez Way overpass near Safeco Field. Crews have completed widening of First Avenue S and S Atlantic Street. These improvements will enhance safety and traffic flow for people heading to and from the Port of Seattle, the waterfront, sports stadiums and destinations in the SODO neighborhood.

S. Royal Brougham Way will be open with one lane in each direction at least two hours before all Mariners games between Occidental Avenue S. and Fourth Avenue S. Left turns from northbound Fourth Avenue S. to westbound S. Royal Brougham Way will be prohibited. When S. Royal Brougham Way is closed, access to the Qwest Field Events Center garage will be provided from First Avenue S. and Occidental Avenue S. Pedestrian access will be provided at all times on the north sidewalk of S. Royal Brougham Way.

Click here for more information

Thanks to Sound Transit, Steve Louie, and WSDOT for the information.