The Airport Way South Viaduct was built in 1928 to provide grade separation between Airport Way South and the Union Pacific, Northern Pacific and Seattle to Tacoma Interurban railroad tracks. The structure, which was built and financed by the railroad companies, was later transferred to the city. Airport Way South is a heavily traveled arterial, important to businesses, freight operations, the Port of Seattle, commuters, cyclist, and residents of Georgetown and the surrounding area. With over 13,000 vehicles traveling on Airport Way South daily, the viaduct has experienced increased stress over time.
With funding from the city’s Bridging the Gap program, SDOT will replace the north and south timber-framed approach structures with a mechanically stabilized earth (MSE) wall structure. Ground improvements will address poor soil conditions at the approaches. Rehabilitation and seismic improvements will be made to the main span of the viaduct. The main span of the bridge will get a new driving surface. Prior to the start of construction, improvements were made to the following surrounding Georgetown Streets: S Lucile Street, S Dawson Street, Denver Avenue S and Airport Way S.
In addition to the construction, upon completion of the project, the structure will have new light poles, pedestrian railing, and a wall designed with the historical character of the neighborhood in mind.