On the eve of the next West Seattle Bridge Community Task Force meeting, an announcement from SDOT – they’ve chosen
Seattle Department of Transportation has reached a major milestone in our work to restore mobility to West Seattle, the Duwamish Valley, and other communities impacted by the West Seattle High-Rise Bridge closure. Following a competitive Request for Qualifications process, we have selected the infrastructure solutions firm HNTB Corporation to design the West Seattle Bridge replacement.
This does NOT mean the “repair now and replace later, or replace now?” decision has been made – SDOT reiterates this step has to be taken now regardless of what that decision turns out to be. HNTB’s many projects, SDOT notes, include the Highway 99 tunnel, South Park Bridge, and Tacoma Narrows Bridge. The SDOT announcement adds:
By bringing on a firm to design a replacement of the West Seattle High-Rise Bridge now, we are ensuring that all of the pieces are in place to quickly pivot if it becomes clear that repairing the bridge is not advisable, and that we will not lose valuable time hiring a design team to begin the rebuilding process. It also prepares us for the inevitable need to replace this critical route, even if the original bridge can be repaired and reopened for some amount of time.
Read the full announcement here.