The new and improved SR 520 is coming to Seattle, with work continuing to the complete the anticipated connection. WSDOT is building the West Approach Bridge North Project (WABN) that will be nearly as long as the new floating bridge itself. The Project addresses the vulnerability of the existing west approach bridge’s hollow columns which could fail during a significant earthquake. The new West Approach North Bridge will be a seismically sound structure, built to modern earthquake standards.
The new, 1.2-mile-long replacement will carry three westbound lanes of traffic (including a new HOV lane) from the new floating bridge to Seattle’s Montlake Boulevard interchange. The new bridge section is expected to open to drivers in 2017, about a year after the new floating bridge is completed. The new bridge section will have a 14-foot wide cross-lake path for pedestrians and bicyclists that will stretch from the Eastside to Montlake.
WABN will have wider, safer lanes, and shoulders that allow vehicles to pull off the road in the case of a breakdown.
WABN will complete the bicycle/pedestrian connection across Lake Washington with a new, 14-foot-wide regional shared-use path.
WABN will extend transit/HOV lanes from the Eastside across Lake Washington to Montlake.
WABN’s new shared-use path will include “belvederes,” or viewpoints, for resting and enjoying the views.