A busy weekend around the region combined with a full closure of the State Route 520 floating bridge means that drivers need to plan ahead and expect delays on Saturday and Sunday afternoons, according to a news release from the Washington Department of Transportation.
In the traffic and event mix this weekend are Seattle Mariners and Sounders games in SODO, a gymnastics show at Key Arena and the St. Demetrios Greek Festival in the Montlake neighborhood.
During the closure, which begins at 11 p.m. Friday, crews will install a fish-friendly culvert beneath all lanes of SR 520 near 108th Avenue Northeast in Bellevue, among other work. To install the culvert, crews will cut a 30-foot-deep trench across the highway, lower in 22 concrete segments weighing as much as 53,000 pounds each, fill the trench and repave the road. It all has to happen before 5 a.m. Monday.
“Crews have already installed four fish-friendly culverts beneath all lanes of SR 520 since the project began and have the process down to a science,” said Brian Dobbins, construction manager for the Washington State Department of Transportation’s SR 520 Eastside Transit and HOV Project.
During the closure, crews will also shift the westbound lanes of SR 520 near Evergreen Point Road to the north. While the number of lanes will remain the same, drivers will likely notice the change on Monday morning and will need to use extra caution.
Sept. 21-24 closure details
Crews will close both directions of SR 520 between Montlake Boulevard in Seattle and Interstate 405 in Bellevue. All lanes of 108th Avenue Northeast, including the on-ramp to eastbound SR 520, will also close during the weekend between Northup Way and 112th Avenue Northeast. Drivers will need to take Interstate 90 or find alternate routes around Lake Washington. Drivers heading to the St. Demetrios Greek Festival will be able to use SR 520 between Interstate 5 and Montlake Boulevard. A complete list of area-wide events can be found at WSDOT’s King County construction update report.
To help keep traffic moving, I-90 express lanes will remain westbound from 6 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 22 then switch to eastbound by 8:30 p.m. On Sunday, Sept. 23 the lanes will be westbound from 6 a.m. to 2 p.m. and eastbound by 3 p.m.
Closure information and detour maps are online. Night work is planned, so residents near the work zone likely will hear construction noise.
SR 520 Eastside project overview
Crews working on the Eastside Transit and HOV project are widening SR 520 to six lanes between Medina and Bellevue, rebuilding interchanges, constructing highway lids and bus stops in the center of the highway, and installing fish-friendly culverts. In 2010, WSDOT awarded a $306 million design-build contract to Eastside Corridor Constructors, a joint venture of Granite Construction Company and PCL Construction Services. The completed Medina to Bellevue corridor is scheduled to open to traffic in December 2013.
More information about the SR 520 Eastside project is online at www.wsdot.wa.gov/Projects/SR520Bridge/MedinaTo202.