Followup: SDOT’s improved info plan for bridge closures out soon

February 1, 2012 at 12:20 pm | In Spokane St. Viaduct project, West Seattle news | 7 Comments

We checked back with SDOT to ask where they’re at on the promised plan for how to make sure you have more notice of future major bridge closures like last weekend’s eastbound Spokane Street Viaduct closure, which backed up traffic in a big way for most of Saturday, but wasn’t mentioned on electronic-message signs (like the one at right, photographed Saturday by Craig). They’re already taking smaller steps – like promoting the mailing list you can join for alerts about the SSV Widening Project (the e-mail signup has always been on the official city info-page, but it used to be buried at the bottom – now it’s at the top). And they’re promising to let everyone know within a day or two what else they’ll be doing in the future to try to reduce the surprise factor. Meantime, as we noted, we’re doing our best to keep daily reminders atop the BIG STORIES list on the WSB sidebar, and when we get advance word of daytime/weekend major closures, we’ll give them a permalink too. (No weekend/daytime closures on the horizon – see the list here.)


  1. Have they provided any insight as to why they do not use the electronic message signs for these events?

    Comment by BD — 12:56 pm February 1, 2012 #

  2. It seems they are a bit slow between the ears.

    Really, it is a simple, cheap solution, and it is NOT about email lists and the like (which are all that is referenced in the article).

    All they need to do is put a good old fashion sign up on Fauntleroy so that those travelling eastbound have some notice of the closure BEFORE they get on the bridge. They actually already have the signage, because it was set up half way up the bridge (you know, about 40 minutes deep in the traffic AFTER you are already stuck on the bridge with no prospect of near exit).

    Really people, it is not brain surgery and it is not about more community outreach. It is about signage.

    On the 35th side, simply use the electronic signs already in place (and potentially a regular sign between Avalon and the bridge entrance for those who come from Avalon (and thus would not see either the proposed Fauntleroy or electronic signage).

    Come on people. The current dialog shows that the folks in charge STILL DON’T GET IT.

    Comment by 33Pete — 2:06 pm February 1, 2012 #

  3. Any word on why those electronic message boards are consistently so wrong on what they predict as the Expected Travel Time across the bridge? I’ve been monitoring those boards for many months, and I commute daily, from Alaska St. to I-5 North, always at 7:00am, and my commute is ALWAYS TWICE as long as the board show. What’s the point of a fancy board if it doesn’t give correct info?

    Comment by whitestuart — 4:07 pm February 1, 2012 #

  4. whitestuart,

    I’d like to know the purpose behind giving us the time to the “Stadiums” as if that is of much use for a morning commute. (Unless you are a Mariner’s player who really really needs more batting practice)

    Comment by Robert2715 — 4:23 pm February 1, 2012 #

  5. I feel the signs are totally useless, a waste of money, high tech wanting to keep itself in existence. Now we have these signs and a network of (usually) inaccurate variable speed limit signs to pay maintenance on.

    If they can’t tell us the bridge is closed what is the point?!

    Comment by Steven — 4:43 pm February 1, 2012 #

  6. Did they send out an email about the Spokane Street before Sat? I know I got one on the 30th about the nighttime ones but I just looked through the trash on my email and nothing.

    its a nice feature when they use it.

    Comment by Colleen — 4:45 pm February 1, 2012 #

  7. whitestuart, the times on the signs are probably estimated for those driving 50mph down Admiral Way! ;-)


    A friend and I actually passed under that sign on Admiral earlier this evening. I made a similar joke, stating that the signs could actually detect the cars’ speeds, like those that are elsewhere in WS, and could tell the speeders how much, (or little), time they were saving over actually driving the limit.


    My friend pointed out that in reality, it wasn’t a bad idea!



    Comment by miws — 10:28 pm February 1, 2012 #

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