AVALON/35TH PROJECT: New phase of paving starts Friday; signage added

After three weeks of work on Avalon, a new phase for the first segment of paving work starts tomorrow. Tonight we have the latest official update – followed by new information on traffic issues resulting from the 35th SW segment of the project that started this week. First, SDOT’s update:

We have wrapped up base paving on the east half SW Avalon Way! Tomorrow, May 10, we plan to move traffic to the east side of SW Avalon Way as we shift work to the west side of SW Avalon Way from SW Genesee St to SW Yancy St (Zone B). As part of this work, we will be demolishing the west side of SW Avalon Way all the way to the centerline.

Starting Friday, May 10, we plan to close the west side of the intersection of SW Avalon Way and SW Genesee St to conduct utility work and pavement reconstruction. Similar to the previous closure on the east side of the intersection, crews will need to work across multiple lanes of traffic in the intersection for a few weeks.

Potholing has begun on 35th Ave SW from SW Avalon Way to SW Alaska St (Zone E) to prepare for water main work. We will maintain one lane of traffic in each direction on 35th Ave SW between Fauntleroy Way SW and SW Alaska St through approximately November 2019. See below for more information about what to expect.

Heads up for future travel: SW Alaska will be closed to 35th Ave SW from Saturday, May 18 to Sunday, May 19. This will allow crews to conduct maintenance on the water main.

Businesses are open! Please continue to visit businesses on 35th Ave SW and SW Avalon Way during construction. Pedestrian access will be maintained at all times.

Things we’ve heard from the community

Each week, we’ll plan to address a few common questions we’ve heard from your neighbors.

Where will my bus stop be?

We’re working with King County Metro (Metro) to coordinate temporary bus service reroutes and stop relocations during construction. On Metro’s website, you can find more information about construction reroutes and sign up for Metro Transit alerts. If a stop is going to be relocated, Metro will post signs along the corridor.

(WSB editor’s note: Metro’s “alerts” webpage still does not include this informatinn. We called this to Metro’s attention yesterday and again today.)

It’s difficult to bike along the corridor

We recognize that construction makes biking along the corridor difficult, especially when bike and vehicle traffic merge. We also recognize that the geography of the area makes it difficult to find alternatives. We will continuing to assess the safety of people biking through our work zone and work with West Seattle Bike Connections to identify future alternative routes during construction.

How long construction will last:

Construction in Zone B is anticipated to wrap up in mid-June. Work in Zone E is anticipated to continue through November. Thank you for your patience as we strive to complete this work safely and efficiently!

Also addressed by SDOT today – a resident’s concern about the 35th SW constraints and backups resulting in cut-throughs on narrow nearby side-streets south of SW Alaska. Kevin cc’d us on his original note and SDOT included us in today’s reply:

Thanks for your email and letting us know about the cut-through traffic on 36th Ave SW and 37th Ave SW. We’ve included details below about a few changes we’ve made to signage onsite today. In addition, we’ve also included a few options that we can offer for your specific side streets if cut-through traffic continues to be an issue.

Signage adjustments on 35th Ave SW
Crews evaluated signage onsite this morning to ensure the messaging on the boards and the closure was as clear to people driving as possible.

(WSB photo – we were headed SB; the messaging faces NB traffic)

They added a message board about the closure at 35th Ave SW and SW Myrtle St in center-turn lane, and kept the current message boards in place at SW Snoqualmie St and SW Alaska St. We will continue to evaluate traffic and the best locations for these message boards as the closure continues.

Additional mitigation options

We are looking into speed mitigation tools and will get back to you soon.

We will be adding a note to our email updates to let people driving that we have heard from neighbors about speeding and concerns around safety on side streets. Particularly as we head into sunny, warmer weather, we’ll highlight a reminder to slow down and watch for people biking, people walking, and kids playing and walking to school.

In addition, if you do not already have vision zero signs for your street, we would be happy to bring you some reminding people driving through that “20 is plenty.”

The project team’s contact info is on the right sidebar of this page.

13 Replies to "AVALON/35TH PROJECT: New phase of paving starts Friday; signage added"

  • Pdxmark May 10, 2019 (12:19 am)

    What bothers me is Metro’s lack of information on their website regarding the 50 bus detours.   It is quite frustrating to walk to the bus stop and see that the 50 is not stoping there having to walk the opposite direction uphill.

    • Lauren May 10, 2019 (6:57 am)

      Agreed! There seemed to be next to no communication from Metro about the stop at Avalon/35th closing. 

    • Avalon Resident May 10, 2019 (8:04 am)

      Earlier this week, the traffic officer at the intersection of Avalon and Genesee made it pretty clear to me that sdot has done a terrible job of communicating changes to Metro. These updates look all peachy keen, but the information coming from sdot has been inconsistent at best. It’s possible Metro’s communication is poor because they’re not getting useful info from sdot. People in my building were told just yesterday that traffic wouldn’t be moved to the east side of the street until Monday. Then yesterday afternoon we were notified they’re actually doing it today, meaning we won’t have access to our garage for an unspecified amount of time. 

      • Another Avalon Resident May 13, 2019 (7:55 am)

        Love that you were told that it wasn’t happening until Monday and their happened Friday. Someone from my building talked  to them and  we were told Friday. Everyone moved their cars from the garage, and then around 8am  we talked to them again and they “never mind it’s Monday now.” But that’s only when it (might) start. No idea how long it might last. 4 hours? Two weeks?Despite the happy-clappy “businesses are open!” message, I’d recommend people don’t come this way or drive Avalon or 35th unless they absolutely have to. Traffic is a mess at best and there is no parking.  In an already parking impacted neighborhood they’ve gotten rid of all  on street spots and told people not to park in their garages, because they won’t have access for vaguely specified days. I’m sorry for the local businesses in all this mess, too.In the meantime, we’re only sporadically getting mail delivery (2 or 3 days a week in fits and starts). I guess the postal carrier can’t park 50 ft away around the corner and use a hand cart, like they do everywhere else that has impacted parking. We’ve been told to collect our mail from the Westwood P.O., but the post office doesn’t have it or even know what we’re talking about. Great communication by the contractor to impacted services and residents and superb effort at working with other agencies to ensure continued services to residents.  

  • pParkerT May 10, 2019 (8:40 am)

    Thanks, WSB, for following up with Metro; I have been signed up for text alerts for the C and the 55 for months and there were no text alerts about the bus stops closing at Avalon/Genessee nor at 35th/Avalon. The signage didn’t go up until after the stops had already closed!

  • 35thDriver May 10, 2019 (9:22 am)

    Does anyone know how long 35th will be 1 lane each way?

    • Joshua's Mom May 10, 2019 (4:45 pm)

      Hi 35th driver,Until November! 

  • despondentCommuter May 10, 2019 (10:33 am)

    JFC, the zone E is going to be one lane until November?!?.This stretch is brutal for traffic, because the buses stop in the middle of that one lane at the very top of the hill. so you have buses turning left from Alaska on to 35th. and then 50 feet later they stop. meaning  you might have 2-3 buses queued up, all of which have to move forward, then stop, then pick up people. All traffic on 35th is reduced to a single lane and is completely stopped for multiple traffic light signal cycles  at Alaska and 35th. You also have other cars on Alaska trying to turn left. It KILLS traffic there. This is untenable, especially if this is to continue until *November*. combined with the work on Avalon, you’re severely impacting 2 main entrances to the West Seattle Bridge.  other entrances will soon feel this effect as they are overloaded. I can’t stress enough about how poorly this was communicated, nor how big of an impact this project is. That it will last until November is incomprehensible.

  • West Seattle since 1979 May 10, 2019 (10:54 am)

    Does anyone know where the 35th and Avalon bus stops are relocated to?  Thanks.

    • Lauren May 10, 2019 (11:29 am)

      I haven’t seen anything, but I would imagine there won’t be a stop between Alaska/Fauntleroy and Avalon/Yancy until the 35th/Avalon stop opens back up.

      • WSB May 10, 2019 (2:07 pm)

        Hopefully everybody is subscribed to Metro alerts and finally got this:
        “As a correction from the previous Transit Alert, beginning Saturday, May 11 and until further
        notice, Metro routes 21 Express, 21 Local, 50, 55, DART 773 and the RapidRide C Line will
        not serve the stop northbound on 35th Av SW just south of SW Avalon Way, due to

        During this time, riders may board or exit routes 21 Express and Local, 55 and the
        RapidRide C Line heading toward downtown Seattle, Route 50 to Othello Station and
        DART Route 773 to Seacrest Marina at the temporary stop eastbound on SW Avalon Way
        just east of 35th Av SW.”

  • DJ May 11, 2019 (8:29 am)

    West Seattle Since 1979:  Yes the morons moved the 35th/Avalon bus stop to the middle of the road, just slightly down from Alaska Street…of all places.  The most idiotic stop I have seen in history.  WARNING KING CO METRO and CITY OF SEATTLE:   MAJOR LIABILITY

    • R May 16, 2019 (5:26 pm)

      Omg thank you! I’ve been so confused as to where the f— this bus stop is. How the hell is that “just east of 35th”!?

Sorry, comment time is over.