Shortly after the West Seattle Bridge’s abrupt closure in March 2020, SDOT installed a traffic signal at Highland Park Way and Holden – an intersection where community members had long been begging for help. The signal was described at the time as “temporary.” It was scheduled to be replaced by a “permanent” signal this fall. Today, SDOT announced it’s pushing back construction of the permanent signal until after the West Seattle Bridge reopens. From the announcement:
We originally scheduled construction at this intersection for fall 2021. Out of sensitivity for Highland Park neighbors who are already experiencing increased traffic, and the travelers who use the intersection, construction on the signal will now begin after the bridge reopens in 2022. This is to ease the impact on people living in Highland Park of more congestion and more cut-through traffic. We expect to select a contractor later this year.
Prior to the high bridge closure, we had already been working with the community to better understand needs for this intersection. The Highland Park community had been asking for changes at this busy intersection, which has been the site of several crashes and safety issues. Poor sight distances, high speeds, travel lane confusion, and a lack of curbs and crosswalks for pedestrians have contributed to these issues.
The project has reached final design and we expect to select a contractor for building the changes next year after the high bridge reopens to traffic.
The final project design includes:
• A more durable traffic signal with metal poles that have signal lights instead of lights connected to wooden poles.
• The signal will also include traffic cameras to monitor and adjust the signal in real-time, as well as vehicle detection in the pavement so the signal can recognize when a person driving is waiting at the light.
• Rebuilding all four corners of the intersection with new American with Disabilities Act (ADA) accessible concrete curb ramps and curb bulbs.
• Painting permanent crosswalks at each crossing.
This is the intersection where a roundabout once was proposed, but eventually scrapped because required grading cost too much.