LOCAL NEWS

Nearly 900 days into its closure, the West Seattle Bridge’s reopening date becomes official

Aug 11, 2022, 10:30 AM | Updated: 11:05 am
The West Seattle Bridge (SounderBruce via Flickr)...
The West Seattle Bridge (SounderBruce via Flickr)
(SounderBruce via Flickr)

It’s the news West Seattle has been waiting for. The West Seattle Bridge will open on September 18, Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) Project Manager Heather Marx announced Thursday morning.

“This monumental effort has repaired the cracks and made the bridge stronger and safer,” said Marx.

History of the West Seattle Bridge

“SDOT is confident that the bridge will now stand strong for decades to come, fulfilling its original intended lifespan. We appreciate the community’s resilience as we navigated the uncertainties of this challenging project.”

The bridge closed on March 23, 2020, when cracks inside the concrete were found to be expanding rapidly. After debating for several months over whether to repair the bridge or replace it, then-Mayor Jenny Durkan decided to go forward with a $58 million repair plan. That was the fastest way to get traffic back on the bridge.

Now that 46 miles of steel cable have been strung through the hollow bridge spans to tighten them together, all that’s left is to load test the bridge to make sure it’s safe for cars and buses.

If it reopens as scheduled, it will have been 909 days since people could use the bridge.

Marx tells KIRO Newsradio that there are, of course, unexpected problems that course arise during the final days of repair, jeopardizing a Sept. 18 reopening date.

“There are always last-minute supply chain issues, last-minute worker shortages, last minute — you know — the whole crew gets COVID,” Marx said.

 

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Nearly 900 days into its closure, the West Seattle Bridge’s reopening date becomes official