ROAD-WORK ALERT: 5-way intersection changes, West Marginal Way repaving this weekend

Here’s your advance alert about road work this weekend – here’s the announcements from SDOT:

5-WAY WORK ON SUNDAY: One week ago, at the West Seattle Transportation Coalition meeting, SDOT mentioned the 5-way just west of the low bridge was being evaluated for changes. Here’s what SDOT is going to do on Sunday:

We’ll be working to close the northbound lane at the Chelan 5-way intersection for people turning into Terminals 5 and 7. This change is being made to help the West Seattle Bridge detour route run more smoothly. At this intersection, delays and traffic congestion from train activity have become more frequent and have ranged from just a minute or two, up to 90 minutes. Since this route is a vital pathway for people traveling into and out of West Seattle during the bridge closure, it is important that we keep traffic moving efficiently and safely for everyone using the roadways.

To make these changes, we’ll need to update the striping on the street, add and remove signs, and make some traffic signal updates. During this work, we’ll need to turn off the signal for a period of time. We’ll have a uniformed police officer directing traffic at the intersection to make sure traffic is moving efficiently during this work. We’ll start as early as 4 AM on Sunday morning and expect to be done by 1:30 PM that afternoon.

These changes will mostly impact freight trucks and employees traveling to Terminal 5 and 7. We will be prohibiting the following movements:

Eastbound left turns from Chelan Ave SW
Northbound straight-through from Delridge Way SW
Northbound straight through from SW Spokane St (from the low bridge)
Westbound right turn from West Marginal Way SW

What other ways can freight and employees get to Terminal 5 and 7?

Freight and employees will be rerouted to an alternate route using the Terminal 5 access bridge. This bridge has a designated right-turn lane to Terminal 7 for people driving to that terminal. To access the Terminal 5 bridge, turn onto SW Spokane St and turn left, just before the entrance to the Spokane Street Swing Bridge. The Terminal 5 access bridge travels over the Chelan 5-way intersection and directly to the terminals.

Here’s a flyer about the planned work.

WEST MARGINAL WAY REPAVING: This is planned both days this weekend:

We are returning to West Marginal Way to pave the other side of the street we paved in early February. On Saturday and Sunday, we will be repaving West Marginal Way SW between 2nd Ave SW and Highland Park Way SW. We anticipate beginning this work early as 1 AM and concluding by 1 PM on both days. During work hours, we will be limiting the area to southbound traffic only.

People driving northbound will follow a detour route that continues north on 2nd Ave SW to Highland Park Way and connects at the Highland Park Way/West Marginal Way intersection. The road will be fully open outside of work hours, but please anticipate traffic delays and navigate the area with caution.

SIGNAGE ON SUNDAY: Also from SDOT, “We’ll be adding directional signs on westbound SW Spokane St to provide earlier notice of the correct lane to be in for the Admiral Way or Harbor Ave/Avalon Way exits. We’ll also make small updates to the road striping to support these new signs. We plan to start this work in the early morning on Sunday, as early as 4 AM and expect to be done by 6 AM that same day.

11 Replies to "ROAD-WORK ALERT: 5-way intersection changes, West Marginal Way repaving this weekend"

  • Lisa March 4, 2022 (7:58 am)

    Brilliant. So we’ll use that much more gas and emit that much more carbon monoxide while we go south and then north— stopping first at the multiple lights, open bridges and waiting trains— before getting into downtown Seattle that can be seen from the northbound Spokane Street lane that you’re closing.

    • Nadoka March 4, 2022 (9:56 am)

      Yup. Got a better solution? Please let us know.🤔

      • bill March 4, 2022 (10:32 am)

        Evidently Lisa swims or perhaps kayaks to downtown from Terminal 5. That’s where the northbound lane goes. And Spokane St runs east-west. 

  • confused March 4, 2022 (10:02 am)

    Will travelers be able to turn onto W Marginal Way SW to leave the island from Delridge Way SW? The purple ‘No Thru’ designation is not clear. 

    • sam-c March 4, 2022 (10:52 am)

      I was wondering as well- that is not clear. (if not – that doesn’t make sense) Maybe, ‘no thru’ means you can’t go straight and the only option is to turn to W Marginal to get to the detour ?

    • Charlie March 4, 2022 (2:05 pm)

      Yes, this is just about prohibiting folks from driving into Terminal 5 from this intersection. The problem is when a train is going through the signal no longer allows traffic from Delridge to turn right onto W Marginal Way because the same lane is used for Terminal 5 traffic. The signal specifically stays red, so folks can no longer move. When the upper bridge is open that’s not a big deal but obviously now it causes problems. When Terminal 5 was not active there was very little train traffic so this wasn’t a big problem, but recently I’ve seen long train lines that can cause long backups. This fixes that problem. Very few people should be driving into Terminal 5 this way anyway, so going an extra quarter mile detour is not bad compared to the hundreds of cars stuck idling from Delridge while a train is going by. This is a Good Thing ™.

      • sam-c March 4, 2022 (4:11 pm)

        Thank you so much for the clarification Charlies; that makes sense.

  • Andrew March 6, 2022 (11:52 pm)

    I have a question that isn’t directly related to this change, but the intersection itself:Coming from Delridge Way SW, how does one get onto the lower bridge (SW Spokane St) that take you towards SoDo? Do you use the right turn bus lane to get onto Spokane St (during the allowed unauthorised vehicle times)?

  • CarDriver March 7, 2022 (6:49 am)

    Andrew. Yes. The “bus only” lane to the low bridge is open to all during authorized hours as it’s the only way to access from Delridge or lower Spokane.

    • Andrew March 7, 2022 (6:20 pm)

      Thank you so much CarDriver, this really helps!

  • D-burger March 7, 2022 (8:42 am)

    A cop repeatedly chirped their siren at me to go ahead and turn right on the red signal when a train is blocking traffic from Delridge and preventing that light from going green. He wasn’t running “code” responding to anything; essentially he was saying go ahead and turn right when only the green left turn arrow is illuminated. So if you see that green arrow for left turn, you should be good to turn right until it turns red.  

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