Another WSDOT official calls it quits on Seattle tunnel project

Jul 27, 2015, 2:34 PM | Updated: Jul 28, 2015, 8:30 am

On Monday, Todd Trepanier, right, announced he took a position as the chief of the South Central Re...

On Monday, Todd Trepanier, right, announced he took a position as the chief of the South Central Region of the Washington State Department of Transportation, leaving the Alaskan Way Viaduct Replacement Program behind. (AP file photo)

(AP file photo)

The Seattle tunnel project is becoming further and further behind schedule and now the Alaskan Way Viaduct Replacement Program will lose one of its key employees.

On Monday, Todd Trepanier announced he took a position as the chief of the South Central Region of the Washington State Department of Transportation.

The transition is not related to the ongoing troubles the Seattle tunnel project and Bertha the boring machine has had, KING 5 reports. Trepanier already lives in Yakima, where he will work.

WSDOT expects to have a replacement before Trepanier leaves at the end of 2015.

However, Trepanier is now the second high-profile WSDOT employee to abandon the tunnel project. The Seattle Times reports Matt Preedy, the former deputy administrator for the tunnel, took a job with Sound Transit in June.

The tunnel project is now about 27 months behind schedule. Tunneling is expected to resume in November, three months later than originally planned. Trepanier told the Seattle City Council on Monday it has a March-April time frame to open to the public. The state is still expecting the contractor, Seattle Tunnel Partners, to deliver.

“As customers of STP, we’re definitely disappointed in that delay,” Trepanier said.

It looks like efforts to turn a portion of the viaduct into a park are making better headway than the tunnel right now.

Correction: In a previous version of this report, it was not made clear that Todd Trepanier will be replaced. The position will be filled as he transitions.

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Another WSDOT official calls it quits on Seattle tunnel project