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CLOSURE ALERT: Eastbound Spokane Street Viaduct on Saturday

September 1, 2022 7:31 pm
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As reported here in July, the city is getting a grant to repave the older lanes of the Spokane Street Viaduct – the continuation of the West Seattle Bridge between the Highway 99 overpass and I-5. The next step in planning that work will result in a closer of the eastbound SSV this Saturday. Here’s the announcement from SDOT:

Plan for a closure of all the eastbound lanes on the Spokane St Viaduct from SR 99 to I-5 between 8 AM and 4 PM on Saturday, Sept. 3.

We’re closing all the eastbound lanes so crews can complete a survey of the bridge surface. The survey will help us develop an accurate surface map of the Spokane St Viaduct bridge deck and inform future paving of the bridge.

Detours will be in place, directing traffic to streets in the SODO neighborhood. Both eastbound and westbound lower Spokane St will be open during the closure. The westbound lanes of the Spokane St Viaduct will remain open during this work on the eastbound lanes.

The paving project is expected to happen sometime in the “next few years,” SDOT told us in July.

WEST SEATTLE BRIDGE: City gets grant for Spokane Street Viaduct

(SDOT camera image, eastbound Spokane St. Viaduct lanes at left)

You might recall that SDOT has closed the eastbound Spokane Street Viaduct -that’s the continuation of the West Seattle Bridge east of Highway 99 – a few times this year for pothole repair. Before the first closure, we reported on SDOT’s big-picture plans, pursuing grant funding for more-extensive repair. Today, the city announced that grant has been secured – one of three city bridges to each get at least $4.5 million “from the Federal Highway Administration Bridge Improvement Program, which is funded in part by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and then passed to WSDOT‘s Local Bridge Program,” and on down to the city from there. The announcement said only that the Spokane Street Viaduct’s $5 million grant would be used for “repairs to the existing deck,” so we asked SDOT for a few more details about what would be done and when. Spokesperson Mariam Ali‘s reply:

The federal funding is to support the replacement of the overlay for the south half of the bridge that carries the eastbound lanes of traffic. The existing concrete deck overlay exhibits significant signs of “alligator skin” cracking and damage. The project will replace the existing overlay and fix any concrete deck distress. We are currently in the design phase for this project and have not yet determined the construction timeline, which would likely occur in the next few years.

The eastbound (south) side of the SSV is its older section – the westbound (north) side includes what was built a decade ago. The other two city bridges getting federal grants announced today are the Jose Rizal Bridge to Beacon Hill ($5 million for paint) and the 15th/Leary bridge in Ballard ($4.5 million for earthquake safety).

CLOSURE ALERT: Eastbound Spokane Street Viaduct work this weekend

(Image from SDOT webcam)

SDOT says it has more pothole work to do on the eastbound Spokane Street Viaduct – the older side of the West Seattle Bridge continuation east of the Highway 99 overpass – so it’ll be closed for much, though not all, of the weekend:

On Saturday, July 2 and Sunday, July 3, from 6 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. each day, we will close the on-ramp from eastbound SW Spokane St (West Seattle Low Bridge) to the Spokane St Viaduct, as well as the eastbound lanes of the Spokane St Viaduct.
A signed detour will be in place along SW Spokane St.

CLOSURE ALERT: Eastbound Spokane Street Viaduct work this weekend

For the second time in four weeks, SDOT will close the eastbound Spokane Street Viaduct – the West Seattle Bridge extension east of Highway 99 – this weekend. The reason is the same as the last closure – pothole work. The on-ramp from eastbound SW Spokane Street to the Spokane Street Viaduct, along with all eastbound lanes of the SSV, will close at 9 pm Friday (June 17th) and reopen by 5 am Monday (June 20th). SDOT says detour signs will be in place along lower Spokane Street.

CLOSURE ALERT: Work planned this weekend on eastbound Spokane Street Viaduct

(Image from SDOT traffic camera)

7:14 PM: After a reader inquiry, we asked SDOT this week for followup information on the deck scanning done last year on the Spokane Street Viaduct – the West Seattle Bridge continuation east of Highway 99. In the response late today, SDOT spokesperson Mariam Ali told WSB that the eastbound SSV – its older section – will close this weekend for work:

There is a planned closure of the eastbound lanes of the Spokane Street Viaduct, 5/20-5/23, for expansion joint work. Our maintenance crews will take advantage of this limited-time closure to correct as many potholes as they can. We will take advantage of all other opportunities beyond this weekend closure to continue addressing any remaining pavement issues.

Ali’s response did not include the exact times for the closure, so we immediately askd that question on followup. As for the deck scanning done to assess the pavement condition, it showed “deterioration,” Ali said, so more work is ahead:

For the Spokane Street Viaduct, we are determining the best method of repair and developing designs to be able to pursue grant funding. Since this segment of the Spokane Street corridor is an essential route for freight and emergency vehicles, we will be taking careful consideration of how to manage traffic flow for this repair work.

The response offered no details of how extensive that repair would have to be, so we’ll be following up on that too.

9 PM UPDATE: We now have the hours for this weekend’s eastbound Spokane Street Viaduct closure – 9 pm Friday 5/20 until 5 am Monday.

UPDATE: Eastbound Spokane Street Viaduct exit to northbound I-5 reopens after crash

1:37 PM: If you’re headed for the eastbound Spokane Street Viaduct, take note that a crash has closed the exit ramp to northbound I-5, so traffic is being diverted. No details on the crash other than a driver is reported to have hit a barrier.

1:55 PM: The ramp has reopened, police at the scene have told dispatch.

How to get a free souvenir chunk of Alaskan Way Viaduct rubble

The time-lapse video is from WSDOT, as it announces that the four remaining columns of the Alaskan Way Viaduct are about to be demolished. But if you harbor Viaduct nostalgia, this might be even bigger news:

We received many requests for commemorative pieces of viaduct concrete. At long last we have the answer: Yes, you can have a piece.

Small pieces of concrete are available for free at the Waterfront Space at the corner of Western Avenue and Union Street. Friends of Waterfront Seattle runs the space to showcase plans for Seattle’s rebuilt waterfront. Here’s where and how to obtain a piece of viaduct history:

Friends of Waterfront Seattle
1400 Western Avenue (corner of Western Ave and Union Street)
Public hours: Wednesday – Sunday, noon – 5 p.m.

Looking ahead, construction is underway in the space where the viaduct once stood. The City of Seattle is building the two-way bus lanes on Columbia Street that will provide a connection for transit between Third Avenue and SR 99 south of downtown. South of Marion Street contractor crews are also mobilizing to begin early work on the new Alaskan Way surface street. Learn more about what’s to come by visiting Waterfront Seattle’s website or subscribing to their weekly construction email updates.

HIGHWAY 99: Tolling in 2 weeks; Viaduct remainders

Two Highway 99 notes tonight:

(That’s about to change! WSB photo from August)

TUNNEL TOLLING IN 2 WEEKS: Saturday, November 9th, is now just two weeks away, and that’s the day WSDOT plans to start tolling the tunnel, nine months after it opened. Toll rates are here – extra charges if you don’t have a Good To Go! sticker pass and account, as explained here. There’s still time to get the sticker free by going here.

VIADUCT REMAINDERS: If you thought the Alaskan Way Viaduct demolition was complete – not so, explains WSDOT here. [corrected link]

Getting around south end of downtown: Viaduct-and-more briefing

Just back from a media briefing that was held steps away from that view of the section of Alaskan Way Viaduct that will be demolished starting Thursday. Also discussed: Getting around in south downtown.

That’s Heather Marx, SDOT’s downtown mobility director. She says Alaskan Way will be temporarily opened to two lanes each way for the Dearborn demo period, Thursday through September 21st. You’ll still be able to get off northbound 99 there, but since Dearborn will be closed, you’ll have to take Alaskan – your first opportunity to turn into downtown will be Alaskan to King Street. 1st Avenue will remain open during the demolition but will be narrowed in the Dearborn vicinity to one lane each way.

That’s Bill Bryant of Metro. He reiterated that NB buses will be temporarily rerouted during the Dearborn closure. He and Marx (a West Seattleite who rides the bus) stressed the importance of keeping up on announced bus stop moves. We asked Bryant about early reviews on the new SB reroutes that started Monday; he said the first day looked good (Marx said her 21X ride went well) but it’s only one day, so they’ll be watching closely for the next few weeks.

As for the Viaduct – WSDOT before-and-almost-after photos above – demolition is now 92 percent complete. Teardown is expected to be over by early October, with cleanup continuing the rest of the month.

P.S. – TUNNEL CLOSURES: Also coming up this weekend, both directions of the Highway 99 tunnel will be closed 10 pm Friday to 8 am Saturday; the NB direction will close again 10 pm Saturday, reopening by 8 am Sunday.

Another reminder from WSDOT: Viaduct’s Dearborn demolition now 2 weeks away

If you missed the mentions in Monday’s tunnel-toll-date announcement and Thursday’s bus-reroute announcement … here’s another full-on reminder from WSDOT: The section of Alaskan Way Viaduct still straddling Dearborn – right where downtown-bound vehicles now exit 99 – is two weeks away from demolition:

As crews removed the viaduct along Alaskan Way this spring and summer, two small sections were left standing at South Dearborn Street. WSDOT and our contractor Kiewit left these two sections in place in order to coordinate the timing of their removal with our partner agencies.

With demolition in its home stretch, we are ready to remove the viaduct over South Dearborn Street. On Thursday, Sept. 12, crews will close South Dearborn Street and narrow First Avenue South to two lanes on either side of the intersection to create a safe work zone. South Dearborn Street will be closed for up to ten days while crews remove the viaduct overhead.

We and our partner agencies are very aware of how critical First Avenue South and South Dearborn Street are for bus riders and drivers heading to and from SR 99 and points south and west of downtown. Some King County Metro buses will reroute while South Dearborn Street is closed and our contractor Kiewit will pull their work zone back from Alaskan Way so the street has its full four lanes open during this closure.

This closure will cause unavoidable disruptions to traffic and we ask drivers to make a plan for their trips: consider alternate routes or ways of getting around, including exiting SR 99 at Spokane Street, using transit or taking the King County Water Taxi. Next month will also bring demolition to the section of viaduct around Marion Street and changes for passengers arriving at Colman Dock. This construction is just one component of the #SeattleSqueeze as Seattle updates its transportation infrastructure to match the city’s mobility needs.

The temporary bus-reroute plan for this phase of demolition was included in Thursday’s announcement.

VIADUCT DEMOLITION: More traffic changes on south end of downtown

More changes to traffic flow in the south end of downtown as Alaskan Way Viaduct demolition continues. Since that area’s become an increasingly important pathway to/from here, here’s the newest WSDOT update:

The viaduct is shrinking along Seattle’s waterfront and the work zone is changing this week as the contractor Kiewit shifts their work zone. …

Alaskan Way in Pioneer Square: Yesler and King reopen, Jackson closes
Map showing traffic control changes on Alaskan WayCrews are removing the viaduct through Pioneer Square from both ends. See the map at right (click to enlarge). Here are traffic control changes to expect this week:

Today: South King Street reopens at Alaskan Way.
Tomorrow: Yesler Way reopens at Alaskan Way
Tomorrow: South Jackson Street closes at Alaskan Way.
Uniformed police officers will help direct traffic this week at key intersections during the evening commutes.

To reach Colman Dock: Vehicles can still enter the drive-on entrance at South Jackson Street by taking a left or right off Alaskan Way. Entering the holding area by driving straight west on South Jackson Street will be unavailable while viaduct demolition occurs overhead. Please allow extra time to reach your ferry as traffic congestion remains high on Alaskan Way.

People walking and biking: When South Jackson Street closes, your new east-west options between Alaskan Way and Pioneer Square will be South King Street and Yesler Way. South Dearborn Street and Columbia Street also remain open to bicycles and pedestrians.

Railroad Way South: This street will become northbound-only from South Dearborn Street, with northbound vehicles forced to take a right on South King Street. Vehicles can also turn onto southbound Railroad Way South from South King Street, but the southbound lane terminates mid-block at the 505 Western Avenue building parking garage.

VIDEO: Alaskan Way Viaduct demolition at the two-thirds-done mark

That’s a new video made public today by WSDOT, which says demolition of the Alaskan Way Viaduct is now two-thirds complete. The video tells what WSDOT calls the “behind-the-scenes” story as the demolition work moves south to Pioneer Square. The full update on what’s happening next, and where, is here.

VIDEO: Alaskan Way Viaduct demolition at the halfway point

That’s a new time-lapse video from WSDOT, which says Alaskan Way Viaduct demolition is halfway done, four months after the Highway 99 tunnel opened:

Demolition of the Alaskan Way Viaduct is now at the halfway mark and crews remain on track to finish the bulk of demolition later this summer. The Seneca street ramp has almost disappeared. Within the next two weeks, WSDOT’s contractor will add a new location to demolition – moving south from King Street toward Pioneer Square.

As always, you can follow demolition news on the Alaskan Way Viaduct Replacement Program website as well as our demolition tracker.

VIDEO: Another milestone for Alaskan Way Viaduct demolition

WSDOT says demolition of the Alaskan Way Viaduct is 30 percent complete, and on schedule. With that news, they published the video above, a new time-lapse of a section of the demolition. Coincidentally, just before that landed in the WSB inbox, we returned from an errand downtown that took us along waterfront Alaskan Way past the demolition zone for the first time, and we have to say, regardless of your feelings about the old double-decker highway, the teardown zone is quite a sight. WSDOT’s Laura Newborn adds this: “In case you are wondering, a portion of the viaduct across from the ferry dock will remain standing until summer to keep the Marion Street pedestrian bridge to-and-from Colman Dock operational. The contractor is currently building a temporary pedestrian bridge along Columbia Street to replace the Marion Street bridge. This summer, the new Columbia Street bridge will connect to a new portion of Colman Dock. After that happens, demolition crews will remove the remaining section of viaduct near Marion Street.”

BYE-A-DUCT: Another milestone for Alaskan Way Viaduct demolition

That ramp you used to take from central downtown onto SB Highway 99? Gone. The new time-lapse video above, from WSDOT, shows the demolition of the Columbia Street ramp. WSDOT made it public while announcing another demolition milestone: Its demolition contractor Kiewit is starting work on the double-decker Viaduct itself, as detailed here. This comes exactly two months after the Viaduct’s closure, and five weeks after the Highway 99 tunnel’s opening.

(Photo from last week, by Jim Spraker)

HIGHWAY 99: Offramp update; Viaduct demolition plans

Two Highway 99 updates this afternoon:

(Monday afternoon view from construction-zone camera, looking south across new offramp)

REMEMBER THE RAMP? The tunnel’s been open for more than a week now, but the Dearborn/Alaskan Way offramp – to allow people traveling from West Seattle and points south to exit NB Highway 99 before the tunnel – is still under construction. The culprit, as you might expect – the snow. We asked WSDOT’s Laura Newborn today if there’s an update on the offramp’s expected opening: “There’s still weather-dependent work ahead of us. We do believe it will be next week but can’t say yet what day.”

ALASKAN WAY VIADUCT DEMOLITION: This too has been delayed a bit by the snow. WSDOT now says it’ll start later this week, at multiple spots including the Columbia/1st ramp. They’ve also added webcams focused on the Viaduct so you can watch the work.

VIADUCT/TUNNEL TRANSITION: What you need to know about other new ramps and intersections that ARE now open

We can’t say this enough: When the Highway 99 tunnel opens – hours from now – there will be a transitional week or so during which the exit to NB 99 from the EB West Seattle Bridge is a “tunnel only” exit, because the offramp to downtown, before the tunnel, isn’t done yet. Separate from that, some new ramps/intersections HAVE just opened on both ends of the tunnel, including the one that you will use to get to SB 99 just south of the tunnel. WSDOT has just published this update that we’re reposting in its entirety:

The Feb. 4 opening of the SR 99 tunnel brings big changes to several important intersections at the tunnel’s north and south ends. New intersections can be confusing, so use the renderings below to help familiarize yourself with what you will encounter on the road. You can also preview the intersections via narrated videos.

North end of the tunnel: Harrison Street and Aurora Ave North

What’s changing:

New northbound SR 99 on-ramp
New southbound SR 99 off-ramp
Harrison Street open east-west across Aurora Avenue North
The new tunnel dives underground at Harrison Street, several blocks north of where the now-closed Battery Street Tunnel begins. The new intersection of Harrison Street and Aurora Avenue North is where the northbound on-ramp begins, and the southbound off-ramp ends. Harrison Street is now also open east-west across Aurora Avenue North.

Note: Construction begins this month on the inside lanes of Aurora Avenue North between Denny Way and Harrison Street (yellow zone at bottom). Learn more about how the North Surface Streets project is rebuilding Aurora Avenue North.

North end of the tunnel: Republican Street and Dexter Avenue North

What’s changing

New northbound SR 99 off-ramp
The intersection of Republican Street and Dexter Avenue North is where the northbound SR 99 off-ramp ends. New signals will control traffic coming off the highway. From the off-ramp drivers will be able to turn left toward Mercer Street, head straight toward South Lake Union, or turn right to head toward Denny Way. Stay alert for people using the Dexter Avenue bike lanes on both sides of the street.

South end of the tunnel: Alaskan Way, South Dearborn Street, and First Avenue South

What’s changing:

New southbound SR 99 on-ramp
New northbound SR 99 off-ramp [NOT YET OPEN]
New east-west street, South Dearborn Street
New primary path between First Avenue South and Alaskan Way
Alaskan Way extended farther south
One of the biggest changes to surface streets is at the tunnel’s south end, just west of CenturyLink field. Alaskan Way no longer ends with a jog under the viaduct onto Railroad Way South. Instead, it continues straight to a new intersection with a new road, South Dearborn Street.

South Dearborn Street is the new east-west connection between Alaskan Way and First Avenue South. This intersection connects SR 99, Alaskan Way and First Avenue. Alaskan Way continues south from this intersection toward East Marginal Way South. Railroad Way South is currently closed from First Avenue South, and when it reopens it will be a local-access-only road.

IMPORTANT NOTE: The northbound SR 99 off-ramp bridge is still under construction and will open one to two weeks after the tunnel opens.

Note: The rendering above does not show the now-closed Alaskan Way Viaduct, which sits in the yellow-highlighted work zone and will be removed section by section over the next six months.

South end of the tunnel: South Royal Brougham Way and First Avenue South

What’s changing:

New northbound SR 99 on-ramp
New southbound SR 99 off-ramp
Colorado Avenue South with two-way traffic to South Atlantic Street
Drivers who previously joined SR 99 northbound from Royal Brougham Way will find striking changes to that intersection. Where once there was a ramp to the viaduct, now there are two ramps to the tunnel. This is where southbound drivers in the tunnel will exit to reach SODO, the stadiums, and I-90 and I-5. This is also where drivers coming from I-90 or the stadiums will enter the tunnel for northbound SR 99.

Note: A shared-use path along Colorado Avenue South will be built in a future phase of the project.

South end of the tunnel: South Atlantic Street and Colorado Avenue South

What’s changing:

New surface-street connection to Alaskan Way South
Colorado Avenue South with two-way traffic to Royal Brougham Way South
The changes around South Atlantic Street are less drastic but still worth knowing. The Atlantic Street overpass over SR 99 is now a complete connection to Alaskan Way (to the north) and East Marginal Way South (to the south). You can now reach both via South Atlantic Street by taking the ramp labeled below.

Colorado Avenue South (previously called East Frontage Road) is now a two-way street, providing a north and south route between South Atlantic Street and SR 99 on- and off-ramps. A common path from SR 99 southbound to reach I-90 will be to take Colorado Avenue south, then take a left turn onto South Atlantic Street.

Note: At tunnel opening South Atlantic Street does not pass beneath the SR 99 overpass to Alaskan Way South. That connection will open later in winter/spring 2019.

Again, no specific time yet for the actual tunnel opening – but WSDOT has said it’ll be in time for the earliest edge of tomorrow’s morning commute (4 am-ish). We’ll have a separate update when it’s announced, and we also still have one more report in the works from Saturday’s tunnel dedication.

VIDEO: Aerial and underground views from Tunnel to Viaduct 8K

That’s WSDOT drone video of the run/walk that started this day of tunnel/viaduct festivities – with 29,000 participants. We also have three views from inside the tunnel, courtesy of Vy Duong:

Note the signage including the new name of the Mariners’ home (as also seen in above-ground signage we showed in our first report on the dedication ceremony that started just as the run/walk was ending). And here’s Vy’s view as the run/walk reached the tunnel’s south end:

And some of the bicycle officers who were in view at multiple sites throughout the day :

We saw them at the ribboncutting, too, after they escorted runners/walkers out:

Speaking of bicycles – Sunday morning, 12,000 people are registered to ride through the tunnel and on the viaduct, in a sold-out event that is the last component of the celebration weekend before WSDOT goes through final steps to get the tunnel open by early Monday morning.

UPDATE: Viaduct farewell; Water Taxi abandons schedule

(Webcam showing north end of Viaduct; refresh for newest image)
3:26 PM: We had planned to head back downtown after coverage earlier of the tunnel dedication, in hopes of covering the Viaduct event. So far we’re hearing of long lines – at least for the Seneca access to the Viaduct itself – and transit delays. So heads up if you’re headed out.

4:36 PM: And if you’re headed back via the Water Taxi – King County now says the schedule has been thrown overboard:

4:55 PM: Finally back downtown. Just passed the Seneca event entrance. Looks like the line subsided.

5:20 PM: Verified – we are on the Viaduct now via Seneca. No wait, no ticket/pass checking. Not too crowded.

6:40 PM: The event is winding down. We’ve left downtown – note that southbound 1st is extremely sluggish; one lane north of the stadiums was set aside for buses being used as shuttles, though that was starting to empty as we passed through. Tomorrow’s only event is the sold-out morning bike ride; after that, WSDOT has a punch-list of items to go through to get ready for opening the tunnel by early Monday.

West Seattle (and beyond) Saturday: Viaduct/tunnel party, and what else is up

We start with reminders about today’s biggest event:

(Photo by Long Bach Nguyen, from just after the Alaskan Way Viaduct’s permanent closure earlier this month)

VIADUCT/TUNNEL PARTY: Along with all the event details on the official website, key points of the schedule are in our Friday report.

WEST SEATTLE WATER TAXI SCHEDULE: It’s running today only, on a special schedule you can see here. Free parking at Pier 2, too, with a shuttle to/from the dock. But be sure to get your car out by 7:45 pm or else it’ll be locked in until Monday morning! And remember that the 773/775 shuttles are NOT running.

If you’re headed downtown for other things, remember there are road closures and bus reroutes. Also happening today:

SATURDAY GROUP RUN: Meet at West Seattle Runner (WSB sponsor), 8 am. Free! (2743 California SW)

PRIORITIZE PROJECTS: As previewed here, you are invited to help prioritize projects in West Seattle/South Park that are up for a share of Neighborhood Street Fund money. Be at Youngstown Cultural Arts Center at 10:30 am. (4408 Delridge Way SW)

2000 SW ORCHARD SITE TOUR: As part of the Design Review process’s Early Community Outreach for a development proposal here, you’re invited to join project-team reps for a site tour at 11 am. (2000 SW Orchard)

BABY STORY TIME: 11:30 am at High Point Library – bring your up-to-12-month-old(s)! (3411 SW Raymond)

M. BUTTERFLY: 7:30 pm curtain at ArtsWest. “Clever parallels to the famous opera Madame Butterfly abound in this fearless play about a French diplomat who falls for a Chinese opera star.” Check ticket availability here. (4711 California SW)

AT THE SKYLARK: Swinson and the Expedition, Smackout Pack, live at 8 pm, $8 cover, 21+. (3803 Delridge Way SW)

AT THE PARLIAMENT: Selectcop w/19ADD, 9 pm at Parliament Tavern. $7 cover. 21+. (4210 SW Admiral Way)

SEE THE FUTURE … via our full calendar, here.

TRAFFIC/TRANSIT TODAY: 3rd Friday AM watch post-Viaduct

(SDOT MAP with travel times / WS-relevant traffic cams / Water Taxi schedule, other helpful info HERE)

5:57 AM: Good morning! Rainy, as forecast.

6:07 AM: Checking around, the weather is this morning’s only complication so far. No incidents or alerts.

6:33 AM: Still incident-free.

6:49 AM: If you noticed an SFD response at Admiral/Olga, that’s just cleared; it was described via radio communication as a trash fire in a bus shelter.

6:59 AM: That talk of possible snow showers Sunday into Monday is now the subject of an official weather advisory. … Monday morning, of course, as announced yesterday, will be the first commute with the new Highway 99 tunnel. But remember that for an additional week or so, taking NB 99 from here will require you to use the tunnel because the new exit ramp before it won’t be ready yet.

7:06 AM: Surface Spokane train alert – blocking at Colorado.

7:35 AM: If you head east of I-5, heads up about a big power outage, more than 12,000 homes/businesses in what City Light describes as “the Rainier Valley, Beacon Hill, and Bryn Mawr-Skyway areas.” Lots of signal lights out so traffic is affected.

7:48 AM: Low bridge has opened for maritime traffic … Speaking of maritime, King County Executive Dow Constantine is visiting the West Seattle Water Taxi dock to thank the commuters who’ve triple its usage during the viaduct-to-tunnel transition weeks.

8 AM: The low bridge is back open to riders, pedestrians, and drivers.

8:13 AM: From the scanner, there’s a report of a school bus hitting a parked car at 35th/Raymond. No injuries reported, so far.

8:49 AM: Went looking for that scene, couldn’t find it. So no problems on 35th. If you’re headed for SB I-5, SFD is responding to a reported collision at Michigan, not far south of here.

9:50 AM: If you have to head east on the bridge but could wait a while … be forewarned, it’s at a crawl. And that description is being generous. Entering from Fauntleroy, the backup – more like standstill – starts at Nucor. We’re in the midst of it all hoping to make it to the 10:30 am media briefing on the north end of the tunnel but probably should have given ourselves an hour and a half to get there rather than just an hour.

10:08 AM: Took 20 minutes to get from Nucor to the 4th Avenue exit. Now we attempt to get across downtown!

TRAFFIC/TRANSIT TODAY: AM watch for 3rd Thursday post-Viaduct

(SDOT MAP with travel times / WS-relevant traffic cams / Water Taxi schedule, other helpful info HERE)

5:55 AM: Good morning! No incidents/alerts in our area so far.

6:06 AM: As the Water Taxi gets going for the day, a reminder that Spirit of Kingston is filling in for Doc Maynard until early afternoon. (Water Taxi Watch shows San Juan Clipper arriving at the dock right now, with SoK to follow.)

6:16 AM: Reader reports that the high bridge is slower than usual for this point in the morning.

6:45 AM: Continuing incident-free.

7:30 AM: Nothing to report, but we’ll note that WSDOT has yet to formally confirm that the tunnel will open Monday. Our next chance to talk with the project leader will be a conference call at 12:30 pm, so if there’s any news, it likely won’t be before then.

7:49 AM: Bridge and I-5 both solid red on the traffic-speeds map right now

8:30 AM: If you’re going to the Saturday viaduct/tunnel celebration, WSDOT has this roundup of helpful info.

TRAFFIC/TRANSIT TODAY: AM watch for 3rd Wednesday post-Viaduct

(SDOT MAP with travel times / WS-relevant traffic cams / Water Taxi schedule, other helpful info HERE)

5:56 AM: Good morning! No school for Seattle Public Schools today, so traffic should be a bit lighter as a result.

6:10 AM: No major incidents or alerts, around the region as well as in our area, so far this morning.

6:36 AM: Still incident-free.

6;54 AM: Busy but still nothing out of the (current) ordinary.

7:13 AM: Slow on the bridge.

7:30 AM: Scanner – police are being dispatched to a reported driver/pedestrian collision at California/Findlay.

7:35 AM: The woman who was hit is not seriously injured, per first police on the scene. (And thanks to the person who just called to be sure we knew about this.)

7:40 AM: The incident was on the southbound side. We say “was” because the scene has now cleared. … Chilly morning and if you have a car parked on the street, you might have some scraping to do, we’re noting from our view of the street.

8:07 AM: Sorry we missed noting a low-bridge opening (remember that the temporary 7-10 am restrictions only apply to vessels below 5,000 gross tons), which is logged as having swung open for maritime traffic 7:32-7:50 am.

8:24 AM: Just in from Joseph, a photo of the bicyclist lineup on the low bridge just before that maritime opening ended: