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Elliott Bay Seawall Project Moves Ahead

The past week has been very exciting and busy for the Elliott Bay Seawall Project team, reaching major milestones for the project, including the voter-approved $290 million ballot measure, the selection of a General Contractor/Construction Manager (GC/CM), and yesterday’s release of the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS).

Ballot measure passes and Mortenson/Manson Selected as the General Contractor/Construction Manager (GC/CM)
On Election night, 77 percent of Seattle voters supported the 30-year, $290 million bond measure (Proposition 1), meaning that funding has been secured for the first phase of the Elliott Bay Seawall Project. “I thank Seattle voters for their emphatic support for this critical public safety infrastructure project,” said Mayor Mike McGinn. “Securing this funding is an important milestone. I am looking forward to continuing to work with our project partners as we move ahead on replacing our deteriorating seawall.”

On November 9, SDOT selected Mortenson/Manson as the Seawall Project’s GC/CM. The firm will be responsible for the construction, subcontracting, coordination and management of the seawall’s construction process, and will be a member of a team that includes City project staff, the design team and other project consultants. The City is excited to bring the contractor on board during the final phases of design and environmental review. This will provide the opportunity for the contractor to work collaboratively with SDOT and the seawall engineering team on the final design details, as the project moves toward a September 2013 construction start date and is expected to be completed by early 2016.

An interesting bit of history to note is that Manson Construction Company was one of the original contractors on the Alaskan Way Seawall in the 1930s.

First slab of seawall being placed, May 15, 1934. Courtesy of Seattle Municipal Archives #8846


What else is happening with the project?

Crews started fieldwork along Alaskan Way between Pike and Union streets. They will be drilling to install monitoring equipment and obtaining soil samples for testing and preparation for construction. We anticipate the work will last 10-days and will be completed on November 21. For more details, click this field work notice. 

Yesterday, the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) was released. The Draft EIS provides detailed environmental analysis on the project purpose and need, seawall replacement alternatives, and effects of the project both during and after construction, and is an important milestone towards securing the environmental approvals needed for the project. The Draft EIS is now available for review and comment through December 13, 2012. A reader’s guide, an executive summary, and the full Draft EIS and technical appendices can be found on the new Environmental Impact Statement page. SDOT invites comments from the public during the 30-day comment period. 

Questions or requests for the Draft EIS documents can be submitted via email or by calling 206-618-8584.

Comments on the Draft EIS can be submitted online via the Comment Form, email or by mail to

Elliott Bay Seawall Project – Draft EIS Comments
c/o Mark Mazzola
Seattle Department of Transportation
PO Box 34996
Seattle, WA 98124-4996

These significant accomplishments are critical to keeping the project on schedule.


For more information, visit
For information related to the ballot measure, please see:
Council Ordinance Number 123922