West Seattle road work: Traction-improvement work announced for stretches of Genesee, Charlestown, Olson

May 12, 2014 at 11:02 am | In West Seattle news, West Seattle traffic alerts | 12 Comments

You’ll recall that, when announcing recent concrete-panel-replacement work on SW Charlestown west of California and SW Genesee east of Avalon, SDOT mentioned it would be followed up by work to improve traction on those steep hills. The department has just announced a work schedule for those two stretches and one other in West Seattle that had recent panel replacement (as well as others around town):

The Seattle Department of Transportation will grind the concrete street surface to improve traction for safety at multiple locations around the city from May 15 through May 29. Work will take place during weekdays between 7 a.m. and 5 p.m. with the exception of some weekend work, which will take place from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Dates for each location are subject to change depending on work progress or other factors. Flaggers will be on site at road closures to provide local access and guidance. The locations were selected based on traction vulnerability due to heavy rain, snow or ice.

May 17-18:
Olson Place SW between SW Cambridge Street and First Avenue South (one lane of traffic open in both directions)

Work zone is in the northbound lanes of Olson Place SW between Fourth Avenue SW and Second Avenue SW.

May 20-21:
SW Genesee Street between SW Avalon Way and Delridge Way SW (local access only)

Work zone is SW Genesee Street between SW Avalon Way and 30th Avenue SW.

Eastbound traffic detoured via SW Avalon Way, SW Yancy Street, 28th Avenue SW, SW Andover Street, and Delridge Way SW.

Westbound traffic detoured via Delridge Way SW, SW Andover Street, 28th Avenue SW, SW Yancy Street, and SW Avalon Way.

May 22-23:
SW Charlestown Street between 49th Avenue SW and California Avenue SW (local access only)

Work zone is SW Charlestown Street between 47th Avenue SW and 45th Avenue SW.

Eastbound traffic detoured via 49th Avenue SW, SW Admiral Way, and California Avenue SW.

Westbound traffic detoured via California Avenue SW, SW Admiral Way, and 49th Avenue SW.

SDOT’s full news release also includes the three non-West Seattle stretches where this work is scheduled.


  1. Did you know that 99 South was down to one lane on the raised part of the structure all day this last Saturday? Delays were significant.

    Comment by workdowntown — 3:25 pm May 12, 2014 #

  2. Just in time for the annual graffiti and property damage expedition on Charlestown hill. Let’s give the darlings a fresh, new canvas so that they can once again remind us that art program cuts have greatly failed our students (the graffiti is pretty sad). I don’t know about you, but I love being reminded of last year’s graduation everyday for the next year when I drive up the hill. Remember folks, when high school kids spray paint and tag, it’s cute and tradition, but when gang bangers do it, it’s a dirty offensive crime. /sarcasm.
    On serious note, hopefully more cyclists/motorcyclists won’t crash due to the wet paint on the hill like last year. Saw a guy lay his bike down last year late at night due to the wet paint.

    Comment by Parents? anyone? — 3:26 pm May 12, 2014 #

  3. Nothing was announced for 99 anywhere. Believe me, we watch all announcement channels, not just what’s sent as “news releases.”
    No texts, calls, e-mails about the problem either, and we didn’t happen to go that way ourselves, since Saturday was Garage Sale Day and we stay on the peninsula for the entirety …

    Comment by WSB — 3:37 pm May 12, 2014 #

  4. I figured they didnt announce it! I meant to contact you Saturday but forgot.

    Comment by workdowntown — 5:30 pm May 12, 2014 #

  5. I thought potholes and ruts were part SDOT’s traction improvement program. They should just let those streets degrade like 35th Ave SW and others. Automagic traction improvement.

    Comment by wsn00b — 5:35 pm May 12, 2014 #

  6. Didn’t they JUST do work on Charlestown and Genesee?

    Comment by LBJ — 6:14 pm May 12, 2014 #

  7. As noted above, yes, and it was pointed out in discussion at the time that it would be followed by this work. See:
    Thanks! – TR

    Comment by WSB — 6:57 pm May 12, 2014 #

  8. Does anyone know where I can find reroutes for the #50? I assume it’ll run under the bridge like it did last month, but I thought I’d ask.

    Comment by NorDel — 7:05 pm May 12, 2014 #

  9. NorDel, if you haven’t done so already, you can sign-up for “Transit Alerts” to be e-mailed to you, and/or sent to your Smart Phone (I think). Just specify which Route(s) you’d like the Alerts for.


    Presuming the SDOT and Metro are communicating properly on these projects, you should get notice of any re-routes.




    Comment by miws — 7:12 pm May 12, 2014 #

  10. Mike- PERFECT! Thank you!

    Comment by NorDel — 10:46 pm May 12, 2014 #

  11. Too bad they did the traction work at the top of the hill instead of the east bound steep part. Doh! Another fine job by our city government.

    Comment by chuck — 4:06 pm May 24, 2014 #

  12. If you haven’t seen our other story – that was all the contractor COULD do – its machinery couldn’t handle the steep section.

    Comment by WSB — 4:10 pm May 24, 2014 #

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