West Seattle Blog... » South Park http://westseattleblog.com West Seattle news, 24/7 Thu, 29 Jan 2015 06:04:06 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.4.2 ‘King tides’ later this week: Times, heights, viewing events http://westseattleblog.com/2015/01/king-tides-later-this-week-times-heights-viewing-events/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/01/king-tides-later-this-week-times-heights-viewing-events/#comments Tue, 20 Jan 2015 23:12:41 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=298725

(WSB photo, taken Saturday)
We noticed those sandbags at Alki Bathhouse over the weekend, apparently awaiting the next round of “king tides,” the very-high high tides that happen a few times in winter. They’re coming up later this week; according to our favorite tide chart (aside from the short-range one on the WSB Weather page, that is), they are:

* 12.8 feet, 5:54 am Wednesday, January 21
* 13.0 feet, 6:31 am Thursday, January 22
* 13.2 feet, 7:10 am Friday, January 23
* 13.2 feet, 7:50 am Saturday, January 24
* 13.0 feet, 8:32 am Sunday, January 25

The Alki/Beach Drive/Harbor Avenue shores are classic places to go see the high water in West Seattle; you can also see the tides’ effects on the Duwamish River by joining either or both of two events, Friday and Saturday mornings – details are on our partner site The South Park News. Right now, the forecast is rainy, but not windy, so you’re not likely to see anything too dramatic, certainly not like last November!

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Sunshine returns tomorrow; get out on the Duwamish River! http://westseattleblog.com/2014/09/sunshine-returns-tomorrow-get-out-on-the-duwamish-river/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/09/sunshine-returns-tomorrow-get-out-on-the-duwamish-river/#comments Wed, 10 Sep 2014 18:12:36 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=285135

Forecast promises sunshine returning tomorrow (and continuing through the weekend). We’ve just found out from the Duwamish River Cleanup Coalition that there’s room for more to join tomorrow night’s Community Kayak Tour of our city’s only river – what a way to enjoy the evening. This time, the tour leaves from Duwamish Waterway Park in South Park (7900 10th Avenue South), just minutes east of West Seattle, 6 pm Thursday (bring your picnic dinner!). You don’t have to have your own kayak, or even experience; everything is provided, through DRCC’s tour partner, West Seattle’s own Alki Kayak Tours, $45/person. But you do need to RSVP ASAP – tours@kayakalki.com is the best way. If you DO have your own kayak, you’re welcome to join the tour too, by donation. Find out what all the buzz is about, with ongoing campaigns like riverforall.org and the newly announced city/county coordination

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Happening now: 9th annual Duwamish River Festival http://westseattleblog.com/2014/08/happening-now-9th-annual-duwamish-river-festival/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/08/happening-now-9th-annual-duwamish-river-festival/#comments Sat, 23 Aug 2014 21:34:29 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=283405

Big turnout for the Duwamish River Festival, on until 4 pm at Duwamish Waterway Park in South Park! It’s a chance to learn about what’s happening on, in, and near the river …

… and to experience the river!

(Kayaks courtesy of West Seattle’s own Alki Kayak Tours/Mountain to Sound Outfitters.) There’s live entertainment too (see the schedule here) – during our visit, the Sounders FC band Sound Wave was performing:

The Duwamish River Cleanup Coalition organizes the festival; many organizations and businesses sponsor it (including WSB and partner site The South Park News). Check it out until 4 pm at 7900 10th Avenue South.

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Duwamish River Festival: Who you’ll see onstage and when http://westseattleblog.com/2014/08/duwamish-river-festival-who-youll-see-onstage-and-when/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/08/duwamish-river-festival-who-youll-see-onstage-and-when/#comments Fri, 22 Aug 2014 20:59:15 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=283276 The entertainment schedule is out for tomorrow afternoon’s 9th annual Duwamish River Festival in nearby South Park (with co-sponsors including WSB). For all four hours of the festival, 12-4 pm at Duwamish Waterway Park, you can check out kayaking/boating on the river as well as booths featuring community groups/organizations. If you want to time your visit depending on who’s onstage, here’s the info:

12:20 pm – 12:40 pm Âu Lạc Vovinam Lion Dance Team performance

12:45 pm – 1:05 pm Trio Dulces- Afro Latin Band

1:30 pm – 1:50 pm Seattle Sounders FC Band: Sound Wave

1:55 pm – 2:10 pm Tlaloktekuhtli – Aztec Dance

2:15 pm – 2:35 pm Zumba – Fitness class

3:00 pm – 3:50 pm Orquesta Cambalache

The park is alongside the river at 7900 10th Avenue South (map).

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Your chance to explore the Duwamish River: Kayak tour series set http://westseattleblog.com/2014/07/your-chance-to-explore-the-duwamish-river-kayak-tour-series-set/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/07/your-chance-to-explore-the-duwamish-river-kayak-tour-series-set/#comments Mon, 28 Jul 2014 01:37:03 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=280687

(WSB file photo)
The Duwamish River, along West Seattle’s eastern border (and beyond), is in the spotlight more than ever this year. Some cleanup is under way and plans for more are in the works. A high-profile awareness campaign by the Duwamish River Cleanup Coalition has even brought a high-profile supporter, Seattle-based hip-hop superstar Macklemore (who wrote about it here).

But you don’t have to be a star to help the river. You can do something as simple as taking a tour. And DRCC has just announced this year’s series – every other Thursday night, 6-8:30 pm, starting this week (July 31st), through the end of September. Three tours leave from T-107 Park on the West Seattle side of the river – July 31st, August 14th, September 11th – while the other two leave from Duwamish Waterway Park in South Park – August 28th and September 25th. And they’re all in partnership with West Seattle-headquartered Alki Kayak Tours (with whom you need to RSVP – tours@kayakalki.com – $45/person unless you’re bringing your own kayak, in which case, it’s by donation). Here’s the flyer with full details (PDF).

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4 years ago, South Park chanted ‘We need a bridge’; now, the community and its neighbors have one again http://westseattleblog.com/2014/06/4-years-ago-south-park-chanted-we-need-a-bridge-now-they-have-one-again/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/06/4-years-ago-south-park-chanted-we-need-a-bridge-now-they-have-one-again/#comments Mon, 30 Jun 2014 13:14:54 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=277884

(WSB video, 6 am today)
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

The new South Park Bridge is now officially in service, opened to regular traffic minutes ago.

(Motorcyclist Charles, center, was first in line; that’s bridge project manager Tim Lane at right)
This comes on the morning after an all-day-and-into-the-night celebration. And it comes exactly four years to the day following the closure of the bridge’s 80-year-old predecessor with a wake both boisterous and bitter.

On June 30, 2010, the crowd chanted, “We need a bridge”:

That night, June 30, 2010, it was by no means certain they would get another one. The bridge’s drawspan was raised one last time, and there it stood.

Sunday, there was no chanting. But there were fireworks:

As our clip shows, they were ceremonially “lit” by bridge-project manager Tim Lane and a group of political and community leaders jubilant over a promise kept – a promise that King County Executive Dow Constantine had put in writing, as commemorated by this framed photo:

“They said it couldn’t be done,” Constantine recalled. But it was. The big banner on the bridge deck gave credit to the various agencies that had contributed to and participated in construction of the new bridge, shown here in an aerial photo by Long Bach Nguyen just before the party started:

And they were celebrated in a round of speeches that preceded the first opportunity for citizens to walk all the way across the bridge, more than four hours into the daylong party. Here’s our video showing most of the speakers (up until Muckleshoot tribal members requested that cameras stop rolling for the blessing and prayers they offered):

After taking the podium from King County Transportation Director Harold Taniguchi, who emceed …

… Constantine recalled the difficult history that is now, so to speak water under the bridge – the decision to close the old bridge without the certainty of a new one, and the anguish that caused South Park residents and business owners. And he hailed the “partnership” of all who helped make the new one happen, not just the agencies that had contributed funding. That included South Park community leaders, especially SP Neighborhood Association past president Dagmar Cronn, photographed with City Councilmember Sally Clark (who proclaimed the bridge “un puente magnifico”):

Clark was one of the councilmembers who came to the old bridge for its 2010 wake. On Sunday, dedication invitees also included many others who had been there that day – we spotted now-former councilmember Jan Drago, wearing a pink-feather boa as she had on shutdown day.

So much of what happened on Sunday evoked memories of 2010, providing a sense of closure, even as the celebration hailed a new start, and a reconnection. U.S. Senator Patty Murray spoke of her South Park tour after the bridge closure in 2010, and how the concerns she heard spurred her to push harder for what became a $34 million federal contribution, close to a quarter of the bridge’s cost.

“And now,” she said, “we’re here.” The federal contribution was also a point of pride for U.S. Rep. Jim McDermott, who recalled joining in the groundbreaking for the now-open bridge.

Some speeches looked ahead in addition to looking back – Councilmember Clark noted that the city needs to “move on” with annexing the remaining unincorporated parts of South Park; Port Commissioner Bill Bryant reiterated the need for the state Legislature to make a transportation package happen, since there are so many more needs remaining unaddressed:

Transportation is vital to industry, as underscored by the Boeing representation at the event – including a spirited speech by Larry Brown of the South Park-headquartered IAM Local 751, who declared, “Is this a great day or what?”

But the greatest part of it was yet to come. Four years ago, people didn’t want to leave the old bridge’s deck as the announced moment of closure arrived, and on Sunday, they couldn’t wait to get onto the new one, so after that celebratory banner was gathered up …

… hundreds strolled on:

And then they took a break for the parade we mentioned earlier:

A parade that even celebrated those who built it:

(Full parade coverage on our partner site The South Park News)
And as one more bookend to the four bridgeless years, the classic Metro Employees Historical Vehicle Association buses that traveled the bridge on June 30th, 2010, closed out the grand-opening parade:

Starting today, you can travel the new South Park Bridge on a regular-service Metro bus again – when the bridge went into service, Route 60 went back to using it.

Whether you travel it by bus, bike, car, truck, or on foot, one thing is for certain – today the new bridge reconnects South Park to the other side of the river, after four years that in one way seemed to last forever, and in another, seemed to be gone in an instant, with Sunday’s crackle of fireworks and ring of blessing bells.

P.S. Our crew at the bridge this morning was told that only two of its four vehicle lanes will be open for the next week or so, as crews continue with finishing touches – note the cones:

New in the area and haven’t yet been to South Park? It’s just minutes east of West Seattle; its restaurants and other businesses are featured here. Meantime, for more views of Sunday’s bridge celebration – including art, music, and Lucha Libre wrestling – here’s our report on TheSouthParkNews.com; get a behind-the-scenes look at the bridge here.

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Celebrating (and walking on) the new South Park Bridge, report #1 http://westseattleblog.com/2014/06/todays-calendar-highlight-south-park-bridge-celebration/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/06/todays-calendar-highlight-south-park-bridge-celebration/#comments Sun, 29 Jun 2014 17:57:51 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=277847 (GALLERY ON THESOUTHPARKNEWS.COM: See it here. And report #2 is in the works for WSB)

4:43 PM: The new South Park Bridge is officially open – if you’re on foot (vehicle traffic won’t be permitted until tomorrow morning at 6 am)!

This followed an epic dedication ceremony:

We have it all on video and will have it in a separate story later (lots of photos too, of course). Most importantly, the street party is scheduled to run until about 9 pm, so you have time to get here, walk on the bridge, enjoy the Lucha Libre masked wrestling that starts around 6 pm …


2:05 PM NOTE: We’re heading back to SP for the heart of the party, but we visited in the noon hour and are already building a gallery on The South Park News.

Scroll down here on WSB, meantime, for helpful advance info if you’re planning to go. And watch the WSB Instagram feed between official updates.

And earlier still:
EARLIER, 10:57 AM: Few planned activities/events on the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar today – the city’s biggest event is downtown, the Pride Parade, starting shortly (11 am). But in the “almost West Seattle” category, our neighbors in South Park are celebrating the new bridge today, on the eve of its official opening tomorrow, exactly 4 years after the old one was taken out of service.

(Added: WSB photo taken after today’s bridge party started at noon)
So here’s what you need to know if you’re planning on, or thinking about, going to the party. First, a map (the party’s on the south side of the bridge, on 14th Avenue South)! Now, today’s schedule, from the King County website:

12:00 – 3:00 p.m. — Street party: music & performances, info booths, self-guided tours of the bridge’s south tower, food & drink

3:00 – 4:00 p.m. — Dedication ceremony with elected officials & community leaders; fireworks

4:30 – 5:30 p.m. — Parade [you can walk on the bridge!]

6:00 – 9:00 p.m. — Lucha Libre; street party continues

Elected officials announced so far for the 3 pm event include U.S. Sen. Patty Murray, County Executive Dow Constantine, Mayor Ed Murray, U.S. Rep. Jim McDermott. Info about street closures, parking, and bus changes during today’s party is at the bottom of this page. We’ll be covering the events here and at TheSouthParkNews.com. If you’re just waiting for the chance to use that route across the Duwamish again, take note that the new bridge will NOT be open for regular use until 6 am tomorrow (Monday).

P.S. Browse our photo galleries previewing the new bridge – looking at its exterior (including the new raingarden in the footprint of the old bridge); peeking inside during a behind-the-scenes media tour.

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Video/photos: Ups and downs of new South Park Bridge, in advance of Sunday’s party and Monday’s opening http://westseattleblog.com/2014/06/videophotos-ups-and-downs-of-new-south-park-bridge-in-advance-of-sundays-party-and-mondays-opening/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/06/videophotos-ups-and-downs-of-new-south-park-bridge-in-advance-of-sundays-party-and-mondays-opening/#comments Wed, 25 Jun 2014 17:53:07 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=277413 (ADDED TO END OF STORY: How Metro service will change when bridge opens Monday)

Ever been inside a drawbridge as it opens? That’s what our video shows, as recorded during the new South Park Bridge‘s behind-the-scenes media tour on Tuesday afternoon, looking ahead to its dedication on Sunday and opening on Monday, which will be four years to the day since the old bridge’s shutdown. While photographers were inside during the bridge opening, your editor here recorded the next clip from the top deck (much quieter!):

Engineers are proud of how fast the new drawbridge moves – as little as 6 1/2 minutes for a full opening/closing (of course, the time will be variable depending on the marine craft moving along the Duwamish below). It’s operated by two 75-horsepower motors:

But the story of the new bridge (located here) is also in what surrounds it, and in reused pieces of the old bridge, on and below the new one. Read ahead to find out about that and to see a dozen more photos (plus another video clip):

The foot/bike paths along the bridge are more protected from traffic than their predecessors.

And the railings are part of the bridge’s 1 Percent for Art component, with all 41 gears from the old bridge incorporated.

The raingarden on the south side of the bridge is in the right-of-way that the old bridge spanned:

It connects to a path with river access that didn’t exist in the bridge area before. In addition to permeable pavement, some paths reuse century-old red bricks that previously comprised part of 14th Avenue South:

(WSB photo taken Monday – all other photos taken during Tuesday’s tour)
You’ll also see old lampposts and concrete railing from the previous bridge as part of that mix, plus seven interpretive signs. Meantime, back up on the bridge, you might notice its towers echo their predecessors:

The bridge has four lanes, as did the old one, but these are wider:

11-foot lanes, to be precise, with 5 feet for bicycles/pedestrians:

(To compare, see the old one here.) The county notes that the new decking is “made of lightweight concrete that is 22 percent lighter than regular concrete.” That’s part of why the workings inside will use less power:

On Monday morning at 6 am, KCDOT says, the bridge will be opened to vehicle traffic from both ends simultaneously; before the old bridge closed, it was averaging 20,000 vehicles a day, with trucks comprising 14 percent of that. Here’s a bridge-top look northeast to the Boeing side:

And southwest to the South Park side:

Again, that will follow a celebration all afternoon and into the night on Sunday – here’s the schedule for it so far. You’ll be able to walk on the bridge, since it doesn’t open to vehicle traffic until the next day.

And now to bookend this story – here’s our inside-the-bridge video as the span was closed:

The county estimates the project’s total cost at $162 million. The financing included contributions from not just King County, but several other government entities, as announced back in 2010.

(For more photos taken around the bridge on Tuesday, the day before the media tour, see this gallery on our partner site The South Park News.)

ADDED 12:24 PM: Readers asked how Metro will change routes once the bridge opens. Here’s the answer, from KCDOT spokesperson Rochelle Ogershok:

The new South Park Bridge is scheduled to reopen for service between South Park and Georgetown at 6 a.m. June 30. At that time, two bus stops will reopen northbound and southbound on 14th Ave S just north of S Cloverdale St, serving the South Park business community.

When the bridge reopens, Route 60 will operate its former routing on 14th and 16th Ave S between S Cloverdale St and East Marginal Way S. Route 60 will no longer operate on 14th Ave S between S Cloverdale St and Highway 99, and on East Marginal Way S between the 1st Ave S Bridge and Carleton Ave S. Operating via the South Park Bridge is expected to save about 5-8 minutes per trip in each direction.

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South Park Bridge to open on June 30th, 4-year anniversary of old bridge’s closure; big party on June 29th http://westseattleblog.com/2014/06/south-park-bridge-to-open-on-june-30th-4-year-anniversary-of-closure/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/06/south-park-bridge-to-open-on-june-30th-4-year-anniversary-of-closure/#comments Wed, 04 Jun 2014 18:40:54 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=275497

(Photo by Long B. Nguyen)
Four days ago, showing that aerial of the almost-complete South Park Bridge, we mentioned it’s close to opening. And now, the date’s just been announced – June 30th, the four-year anniversary of the old bridge’s closure:

King County Executive Dow Constantine today announced that the newly constructed South Park Bridge will open June 30. The previous drawbridge, built in 1931, was closed and dismantled in mid-2010 due to safety concerns.

“I made a promise five years ago that we would build a new, safer bridge to connect our industrial heartland to the rest of King County — and we’re ready to deliver,” said Executive Constantine. “Not only will this help local manufacturers and family-owned businesses, it will reunite working communities in the Lower Duwamish area.”

The new bridge is expected to carry 20,000 vehicles and nearly 3,000 heavy-duty trucks each day. It will also carry an estimated 10 million tons of freight each year, including aerospace parts to local Boeing facilities.

ADDED 11:52 AM: The county has a gallery of images of the new bridge accompanying this announcement on its website, including this one:

(Photo by Ned Ahrens, King County DOT)
See the rest here.

3:20 PM UPDATE: While June 30th will be the official opening to traffic, information that’s come out in the past few hours clarifies that the big party will be on Sunday, June 29th, so mark your calendar for that.

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View from above: New South Park Bridge close to completion http://westseattleblog.com/2014/05/view-from-above-new-south-park-bridge-close-to-completion/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/05/view-from-above-new-south-park-bridge-close-to-completion/#comments Sun, 01 Jun 2014 05:00:26 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=275055

The opening date for the new South Park Bridge isn’t set yet, and King County isn’t offering an estimate (aside from “summer”), but it’s close to completion, as you can see in the two views shared this week by West Seattle photographer/pilot Long B. Nguyen:

The county Department of Transportation says it’s continuing electrical testing – 142 miles of wire in the project, according to an update earlier this spring. The old bridge was shut down in June 2010 after a raucous sendoff, and South Park community members are working right now to plan a grand-opening party they hope will eclipse it.

P.S. If you’re new to the area – here’s a map showing the bridge’s location.

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Followup: South Park cottage off the riverbank, onto a barge http://westseattleblog.com/2014/04/followup-south-park-cottage-off-the-riverbank-onto-a-barge/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/04/followup-south-park-cottage-off-the-riverbank-onto-a-barge/#comments Mon, 21 Apr 2014 16:49:53 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=271078

9:49 AM: Over the weekend, we reported on a South Park cottage being moved off a little slice of Duwamish River shoreline to make way for a pocket park, pointing out that you might notice the 95-year-old house floating past West Seattle shores (on the river or the bay) as it’s taken to a new site in the San Juans. Crews from Nickel Bros. started work early this morning and already have the cottage on a barge, as our photo shows. We don’t yet know the timetable from here, but if you see it pass, now you know!

9:54 AM UPDATE: And literally two minutes after we published the first take of this story, the barge and house passed Duwamish Waterway Park, where we had been working in hopes of catching it as it goes by:

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Why this house will soon be floating past West Seattle’s shore http://westseattleblog.com/2014/04/why-this-house-will-soon-be-floating-past-west-seattles-shore/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/04/why-this-house-will-soon-be-floating-past-west-seattles-shore/#comments Sun, 20 Apr 2014 04:50:39 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=271000

Tonight, that 980-square-foot cottage is on the South Park riverfront site where it’s sat for 95 years, at 12th Avenue South and South Elmgrove. In a few days, you might notice it as it floats past West Seattle’s eastern/northeastern shore. It’s up on blocks and wheels, preparing for a move that’s scheduled to start early Monday. The house will be loaded onto a barge by the house-moving specialists at Nickel Bros. (which had listed it here), and taken to its new home on Orcas Island in the San Juans. While the house’s new owner is paying for that, Seattle Public Utilities is the agency clearing the site for future use as a street-end pocket park. The park will fulfill SPU’s obligation to provide something in exchange for taking over a street end elsewhere in South Park to build a new pump station. County records show the city paid $180,000 six months ago for the house and its 2,000-square-foot riverside lot.

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Duwamish Alive! volunteer cleanup, on the river and off http://westseattleblog.com/2014/04/duwamish-alive-volunteer-cleanup-on-the-river-and-off/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/04/duwamish-alive-volunteer-cleanup-on-the-river-and-off/#comments Sat, 19 Apr 2014 20:50:54 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=270957

It’s just about wrapup time for the spring edition of Duwamish Alive! – a twice-yearly day of volunteer cleanup/restoration work to help the Duwamish River and its watershed/feeder waterways. One of the busiest sites this morning was on the South Park shoreline, at Duwamish Waterway Park. With the help of Puget Soundkeeper Alliance and Alki Kayak Tours, volunteers were launching kayaks to head out and pick up shoreline debris. Park habitat and raingarden work was being done at the park, too. (Update: Via Facebook, Soundkeeper says volunteers removed 260 pounds of debris from the river.)

This was one of 11 Duwamish Alive! sites from West Seattle to Georgetown to South Park to Tukwila; the fall edition will be in October. (Any photos from other sites today? We’d love to add more to this story – editor@westseattleblog.com – and thanks to all who volunteered!)

ADDED 6:01 PM: From Rory Denovan:

Roxhill Bog had a dozen hardy volunteers for Duwamish Alive. We filled a dumpster full of non-native invasive plants and picked up almost as much litter.

Plans are in the works to head back out in a month or so for more weeding and mulching. We’re determined to get the Park in shape so people can see how really beautiful and diverse the native bog plants are.

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County now says South Park Bridge won’t be open until summer http://westseattleblog.com/2014/03/county-now-says-south-park-bridge-wont-be-open-until-summer/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/03/county-now-says-south-park-bridge-wont-be-open-until-summer/#comments Wed, 19 Mar 2014 22:26:38 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=268164 If you’ve been eagerly awaiting the opening of the new South Park Bridge, looks like the wait is going to be a bit longer. The projected opening timeframe for the bridge has been “spring 2014″ for a while … but today, the county’s detailed invitation to next week’s South Park slideshow presentation on bridge construction says it won’t open until sometime this summer, after extensive wiring work. A cached copy of the project webpage shows it displaying “Anticipated Opening: Spring 2014″ as recently as last Sunday.

The bridge originally was projected to open in fall 2013; as first reported on WSB and partner site The South Park News in fall 2012, that changed because foundation work took longer than planned. We have a request out to the county for comment on what has caused the latest change. The old bridge was closed June 30, 2010, after being deemed unsafe; funding for a replacement wasn’t certain by that point, but was eventually secured, and the new bridge’s groundbreaking was in May 2011.

4:09 PM UPDATE: County Transportation Department spokesperson Rochelle Ogershok says this isn’t the result of a new problem, but rather the re-evaluation of the timeline. Her response, ahead:

I think the South Park community is aware that the contractor encountered significant excavation and foundation issues when constructing the bridge piers more than a year ago – and those problems delayed the timeline. Now we are approaching spring so we wanted folks to know we are now looking at a summer timeframe. As was mentioned in the update, heavy construction is winding down and we are entering the final phase of the project that involves a major electrical installation. Because this phase is so tedious and complex, we won’t have an exact opening date until we get further into the installation. We don’t want to throw out a completion date and have to revise again –that would only add to the frustration some are feeling.

We can sympathize with those in the community who wish the project was done. We also want the bridge reopened. We want to assure the community we are anxious for the contractor to complete this final phase in a timely manner. We will let folks know when we expect the bridge to open as we move through this last phase of electrical work.

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South Park Bridge update from above, with months to go http://westseattleblog.com/2013/12/south-park-bridge-update-from-above-with-months-to-go/ http://westseattleblog.com/2013/12/south-park-bridge-update-from-above-with-months-to-go/#comments Sun, 29 Dec 2013 19:49:52 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=260394

(Click image for larger view)
What’s expected to be among the biggest stories in 2014 is the opening of the new South Park Bridge, almost four years after King County shut down the old one out of safety concerns. West Seattle photographer/pilot Long B. Nguyen has just sent three new views of the bridge project, looking toward the east/southeast. The bridge’s control towers, which are wrapped in these views, are the focus of the county’s December update.

(Click image for larger view)
If you’re viewing this from the WSB home page, click ahead for another, even-more-all-encompassing view (and some backstory):

New in the area? Or, for some other reason, never saw the old one? Check out the views from one of the reports in our extensive coverage of its final hours three and a half years ago. At the time, construction of a replacement was not a sure thing, as full funding had not been amassed; that didn’t happen until three months later. Construction began in spring 2011. At the time it was hoped the new bridge would be done by now, but in November of last year, as we first reported on partner site The South Park News, the county disclosed a delay. No estimated opening date has been announced beyond a general expectation of “spring 2014.”

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