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Another 520 bridge milestone as WB span opens

Update: Westbound span of 520 bridge opens

A big change came Monday for the thousands of drivers who use the 520 bridge.

RELATED: Snohomish County roads can’t handle the growth

The change comes after the bridge was shut down over the weekend. Now, westbound drivers can use the new span to Montlake in Seattle. For the past month, only drivers exiting Montlake had access to the bridge span.

Original article:

Steve Peer with the Washington Department of Transportation said the weekend closure is a little different than the others we’ve had.

“Typically, we have closures between 92nd and Montlake. But in the eastbound direction we’re actually closing between I-5 and 92nd,” he said.

So you won’t be able to get to Montlake from I-5 this weekend, but you will be able to go westbound from Montlake to I-5.

The state will be linking the new span from the floating bridge to Montlake. Starting Monday, all westbound drivers will be using the new span to Montlake.

For the last month, only people exiting to Montlake were using that bridge.

“It will be a big milestone for the program,” Peer said. “It’s an exciting day for the project, and we think drivers are going to enjoy the new westbound travel.”

But don’t get too used to it. Westbound drivers will have to start sharing that new bridge with eastbound drivers in about a year. That’s when the contractor will begin building the new eastbound bridge from Montlake to the floating bridge. That sharing will last three to four years as work on the new Montlake interchange is completed.

After that, work can begin on the new bridge connecting Montlake to I-5.

In all, we have about 10 more years of construction before the entire 520 project will be finished.

There are some other traffic issues to watch out for this weekend, outside the typical congestion due to the Seahawks and Sounders. The paving project on northbound I-5 between Southcenter and the Duwamish River Bridge. Only two lanes will be open in that area all weekend.

Tell Chris about a Chokepoint or ask a traffic question @KIROTraffic via Twitter.

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