LOCAL NEWS

Seattle’s Alaskan Way Viaduct to close in January 2019

Sep 17, 2018, 1:14 PM | Updated: 1:40 pm
viaduct, Alaskan Way Viaduct closure...
(WSDOT)
(WSDOT)

The replacement tunnel for the Alaskan Way Viaduct through Seattle will open in early 2019, slightly delayed from most recent estimates.

RELATED: Preparing to close the viaduct, open the SR 99 tunnel

Seattle expected that the Alaskan Way Viaduct would close before the end of the year. The Washington State Department of Transportation announced Monday that the viaduct will now close on Jan. 11, prompting a six-week traffic disruption before the new tunnel can open.

“There was a lot of optimism over the last year or so that we could achieve that opening date as early as this fall,” said Brian Nielsen with the Alaskan Way Viaduct Replacement Program. “But working with our partners at the City of Seattle, King County Metro, Sound Transit, and the Port, we’ve decided that an early 2019 date is what’s best for Seattle and the community at large.”

When the tunnel does open, it will be a historic event in the state’s transportation history, Nielsen said.

WSDOT officials insist this is not a delay, despite previous expectations that the closure would happen this fall, followed by the tunnel opening before the end of the year.

“Back when the machine broke through, when the machine was disassembled, we said to everybody that it was going to be 2019,” a WSDOT official said Monday at a press conference. “We’ve been working real hard to try to advance that. At the end of the day, it’s 2019. I know somebody’s headline says ‘delayed’ but we don’t view it as that. We don’t view it as a delay.”

After the viaduct closes on Jan. 11, new ramps will be constructed to connect the roadway to the tunnel. That will take roughly three weeks, according to The Seattle Times. That means Seattle will experience weeks of traffic snarls through downtown without a vital connection between south downtown to Seattle center. Nielsen said that Seattle will be forced to change its travel behavior.

Some of the delay from the fall to winter 2019, has to do with Seattle’s rainy season. Rains can affect when paving the new ramps can be done. It is expected that the weather could push back some road work.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates.

Local News

covid...
MyNorthwest Staff

UW Medicine study seeks local participants to understand COVID spread

UW Medicine invites Washington state residents up to age 85 to submit a survey about their exposure to COVID during the pandemic as part of a study.
18 hours ago
Amazon...
MyNorthwest Staff

Amazon hiring for more than 500 positions at new sort center in Fife

A new Amazon facility in Fife, Washington, that's set to open later this month has starting hiring for more than 500 positions.
18 hours ago
hospitals...
Nicole Jennings

Rural Eastern Washington hospitals say no big losses in staffing post-vaccine mandate

Some of the rural Eastern Washington hospitals that were expected to have big losses after the vaccine mandate say things are going well.
18 hours ago
Climate Pledge Arena...
Associated Press

Climate Pledge Arena ready to get Kraken for hockey debut

The first event ever inside Climate Pledge Arena — whether it will be considered the official first event or not — was far from a soft opening.
2 days ago
Some of the located containers, captured by the US Coast Guard Air Station Port Angeles helicopter....
KIRO 7 News Staff

Approximately 40 shipping containers adrift off Washington coast

Approximately 40 shipping containers were lost off a ship 43 miles west of the Strait of Juan de Fuca, according to the United States Coast Guard.
2 days ago
refugees...
Kathryn Altena

Gov. Inslee, Washington groups prepare to welcome Afghan refugees

In the coming months, 1,400 Afghan refugees are expected to pass through the Seattle-Tacoma International Airport upon their arrival in Washington.
2 days ago

Sponsored Articles

...

Medicare open enrollment for 2022 starts Oct. 15 and SHIBA can help!

Washington State Office of the Insurance Commissioner SPONSORED — Medicare’s Open Enrollment Period, also called the Annual Election Period, is Oct. 15 to Dec. 7. During this time, people enrolled in Medicare can: Switch from Original Medicare to a Medicare Advantage plan and vice versa. Join, drop or switch a Part D prescription drug plan, […]
...

How to Have a Stress-Free Real Estate Experience

The real estate industry has adapted and sellers are taking full advantage of new real estate models. One of which is Every Door Real Estate.
...
IQ Air

How Poor Air Quality Is Affecting Our Future Athletes

You cannot control your child’s breathing environment 100% of the time, but you can make a huge impact.
...
Swedish Health Services

Special Coverage: National Prostate Cancer Awareness Month

There are a wide variety of treatment options available for men with prostate cancer. The most technologically advanced treatment option in the Northwest is Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy using the CyberKnife platform.
...
Marysville Police Department

Police Opportunities in a Growing, Supportive Washington Community

Marysville PD is looking for both lateral and entry level officers. Begin or continue your career in law enforcement for a growing, supportive community.
...
Comcast

Small, Minority-Owned Businesses in King County and Pierce County Can Now Apply For $10,000 Relief Grants Through Comcast RISE

Businesses in King County and Pierce County can apply beginning on October 1, 2021, at www.ComcastRISE.com for a chance to receive a $10,000 relief grant.
Seattle’s Alaskan Way Viaduct to close in January 2019