A day and a half to go until the Alaskan Way Viaduct is closed early Friday so that the Highway 99 tunneling machine can start going under it. If you work in or near downtown, you might be planning to use the West Seattle Water Taxi, which has a new boat twice the capacity of the one it had during the 2011 Viaduct closure, among other attributes (the Doc Maynard is faster, too). Ideally, you will get to and from the dock at Seacrest by busing, biking (the boat has room for 26 bikes), walking, or getting dropped off at the dock. If none of that is possible – here’s what you need to know about the parking situation, with added spaces during the closure, as detailed in this special brochure:
That’s the sign at the entrance to Pier 2, right across from the 7-11 in the 2400 block of Harbor Avenue SW, and that’s where you will drive in – these gates will be open:
This lot has about 200 parking spaces and a free shuttle to and from Seacrest – separate from the regular WT shuttle – but because it’s a “secured facility,” it also has restrictions:
It will be staffed Monday through Friday, in the morning from 5:45 a.m. to 9:15 a.m. and in the afternoon between 4 p.m. and 7:15 p.m. Cars will not be accessible outside of these hours. We suggest you park here 20 minutes before sailing time. The shuttle will run the .6 mile route continuously between Pier 2 and Seacrest Park.
The county Department of Transportation, which operates the Water Taxi, says the “staffing” means people will be there to point you in the right direction and answer questions.
Closer to the pier, more street parking along Harbor Avenue SW should be available because – as the now-in-place no-parking signs warn – parking is off-limits 2-5 am along the water side of Harbor Avenue during the closure. ONE CHANGE:
Thanks to nearby resident Carolyn for catching this – there’s a change in where that restriction is in place. While the Water Taxi’s closure-related brochure said they would be only south of Seacrest, they instead stretch north to just east of the small angled-parking area at Duwamish Head. Again, these street-parking spaces are available except for 2-5 am.
Finally, about 40 spaces will be available in this unpaved area south of Salty’s on Alki (WSB sponsor), which is the city-owned Bronson street end – look for the Parks sign so you know you’re in the right place:
Where NOT to park: Don Armeni Boat Ramp. While some spaces were made available there in 2011, that was late October and not much boating going on. This time it’s not part of the plan.
Other points if you’re new to the Water Taxi:
*The sailing schedule is here. The Doc Maynard leaves West Seattle every half-hour from 6:15 to 9:15, and then takes a break until 11 am.
*You can buy your ticket(s) via machines at the dock – at Seacrest, on the east side of the building – or else pay as you board, with exact-change cash or an ORCA card.
*Find the shuttle-bus schedules via this page on the Water Taxi website – follow the “buses” tab and then click the route number for the schedule. (Almost forgot to mention – as announced last week, these buses will be upsized during the closure, 39 passengers.)
And again, here’s the special Viaduct-closure-related brochure for the West Seattle Water Taxi. We’ll have a crew at Seacrest on Friday morning to report on how things are going, as part of our expanded commute coverage during the Viaduct closure.