Washington State Department of Transportation
July 30, 2013
The high-flying jets of Seafair will turn heads again this year, which means traffic on the Interstate 90 floating bridge will need to take alternate routes during FAA-required closures of the bridge.
The Washington State Department of Transportation will close the I-90 bridge three times to drivers, walkers and cyclists this weekend while the Patriots Jet Team practices for and performs at the Seafair Airshow.
WSDOT will close I-90 from Interstate 5 in Seattle to Island Crest Way on Mercer Island during the Patriots’ practice flights and performances Friday, Aug. 2, through Sunday, Aug 4. Traffic will need to take alternate routes. Drivers should expect heavy traffic and delays in the greater Seattle and Bellevue areas.
Certain I-90 and I-5 ramps will also close 30 minutes to one hour before flight times. Drivers who need to cross Lake Washington should plan to do so at least one hour before the closures or use an alternate route, such as I-405 or State Route 522.
I-90 closure schedule
- Friday, Aug. 2: 1:15 to 2:40 p.m. (practice)
- Saturday, Aug. 3: 1:15 to 2:40 p.m. (Seafair airshow)
- Sunday, Aug. 4: 1:15 to 2:40 p.m. (Seafair airshow)
- Both directions of I-5 to eastbound I-90 ramp (closed up to 30 minutes prior to practice or show)
- Rainier Avenue ramps to eastbound I-90 (closed up to 30 minutes prior to practice or show)
- 76th Avenue to westbound I-90 (closed up to 30 minutes prior to practice or show)
- Island Crest Way to westbound I-90 (closed up to 30 minutes prior to practice or show)
- Eastbound I-90 to West Mercer Way (closed up to 30 minutes prior to practice or show)
- East Mercer Way to westbound I-90 (closed up one hour prior to practice or show)
- West Mercer Way to westbound I-90 (up to one hour prior to practice or show)
The closures are required by the Federal Aviation Administration to ensure safety and minimize distractions for drivers, cyclists, pedestrians and the Patriots’ pilots. For details on closures and FAA regulations visit the Seafair closures page.
SR 520 open during I-90 closures
During the I-90 closures, the SR 520 floating bridge will still be open to traffic and tolls will be collected according to the rate schedule. Infrequent users of the SR 520 bridge may want to consider setting up a short-term Good To Go! account for Seafair weekend.
Additionally, the SR 520 drawspan will not open for marine traffic during the following times:
- Friday, Aug. 2: 12:30 to 7 p.m.
- Saturday, Aug. 3, and Sunday, Aug. 4: 12:30 to 3:30 p.m.
Drawspan openings should also be infrequent now through Seafair weekend.
WSDOT temporarily reopened the east navigational channel by moving construction equipment for the new SR 520 bridge to another site. Temporarily reopening this channel allows boats less than 59 feet tall to pass under the east high-rise rather than request a draw span opening. Vessels less than 45 feet tall may also use the west navigation channel at any time.
Check the What’s Happening Now page for up-to-date information on special events and important construction updates in your area. Drivers can also tap into resources such as @wsdot_traffic on Twitter, the Seattle traffic page and travel alerts.
Hyperlinks in the release:
- WSDOT Blog: wsdotblog.blogspot.com/2013/07/high-flying-jets-of-seafair-mean.html
- Seafair closure page: www.wsdot.wa.gov/northwest/king/seafair/
- Toll rates: www.wsdot.wa.gov/Tolling/TollRates.htm#520bridge
- Good To Go!: www.wsdot.wa.gov/goodtogo/
- SR 520 Drawspan Information: www.wsdot.wa.gov/Projects/SR520Bridge/BridgeAndLandings/DrawspanInfo.htm
- SR 520 text and email alerts: public.govdelivery.com/accounts/WADOT/subscriber/new?
- What’s Happening Now in the Puget Sound Area: www.wsdot.wa.gov/construction/pugetsound/today.htm
- Twitter: twitter.com/wsdot_traffic
- Seattle Traffic page: www.wsdot.com/traffic/seattle/default.aspx
- Travel Alerts: www.wsdot.com/traffic/trafficalerts/
Bart Treece, WSDOT communications, 206-440-4473 (Shoreline)
Melissa Jurican, Seafair, 206-728-0123, extension 109 (Seattle)