The previously announced overnight traffic shift of eastbound traffic on the Spokane Street Viaduct will be implemented and in effect in time for the Wednesday morning traffic commute. The eastbound off-ramp at Fourth Avenue S, which has been closed since mid-April, will reopen by 5 a.m. on Wednesday morning. At the same time, the eastbound off-ramp at First Avenue S will be closed, and will remain closed for the next two to three weeks.
These alternating closures of the eastbound off-ramps are needed to allow the project contractor room to repair and resurface the bridge deck on the old viaduct structure. This work is being in done in phases in order to keep through traffic moving while repairs are being made, and is expected to continue until late August or early September. It is one of the last remaining elements in the project that will double the width of the viaduct as well as make important seismic upgrades.
The other major piece of work yet to be completed is the construction of the combined westbound on/off ramp at First Avenue S. While ramp construction will be finished within the next month or two, the temporary presence of both westbound and eastbound traffic on the new viaduct structure while bridge deck repairs are being made on the old structure, doesn’t leave enough room for on-ramp traffic to safely merge into the flow of traffic. As a result, the on-ramp will remain closed until all work is completed on the upper roadway, most likely in late August or early September.
Motorists are also encouraged to plan ahead for the closure of the westbound lanes of the Spokane Street Viaduct between I-5 and SR 99 scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. on Saturday, June 9 and run until 5 a.m. on Monday, June 11. The exit to the West Seattle Bridge from southbound SR 99 will remain open during this closure, presenting many motorists with a convenient alternate route back to West Seattle. SR 99 southbound can be accessed from the downtown area at the Elliott Avenue and Columbia Street on-ramps.
For those drivers heading to West Seattle from I-5, the previously posted surface detour route through SODO remains the most direct route during this June weekend closure. Southbound traffic from I-5 would exit at S Forest Street, while northbound traffic on I-5 would exit at Sixth Avenue S. Both sets of motorists would proceed north on Sixth Avenue S to S Lander Street, where they will be directed to turn left (west). They will follow S Lander until turning left (south) onto First Avenue S. They will proceed south until turning right at S Hanford Street. At East Marginal Way S detouring motorists will be directed to turn left (south) onto East Marginal Way, and then right (west) at S Spokane Street. That will take them over the Spokane Swing Bridge and into West Seattle and their final destination.