Travel Alert: Seneca St Travel Impacts Through June 1

Crews lifting a girder from the Columbia Street ramp that had been cut away with saws. Photo courtesy of WSDOT.

Crews lifting a girder from the Columbia Street ramp that had been cut away with saws. Photo courtesy of WSDOT.

 

As part of the removal of the Alaskan Way Viaduct, crews will remove the Seneca St off-ramp beginning today, Wednesday, May 22. Due to its height and proximity to nearby buildings, the contractor Kiewit will use cranes to bring the ramp’s girders down one by one. The contractor’s current plan calls for the ramp to be removed in about three weeks, with crews working only during daytime hours. Buildings adjacent to the work will be protected in the air by nets hung from cranes, and on the ground by barriers.

 

Here’s what you can expect:

 

SCHEDULE

 

The contractor will need to close the intersection of Western Ave and Seneca St while removing the ramp above the intersection. We’ve coordinated closely with WSDOT and Kiewit on the work plan for the ramp’s removal to minimize road closures in the neighborhood. The current closure plan:

 

  • Wednesday, May 22: Crews begin site prep and slotting the deck near Alaskan Way.
  • Thursday, May 23: Western crosswalk across Seneca Street at Western Avenue closes at 7 a.m.
  • Tuesday, May 28: Whole intersection of Seneca Street and Western Avenue closes at 4 a.m., for up to 20 days total.
  • Saturday, June 1: University Street reopens onto Alaskan Way.
  • Late May or early June: Intersection of Seneca Street and Post Avenue closes. Exact date depends on crews’ progress.
  • Mid-June: Ramp fully removed, and site restoration begins.

 

Work hours could change based on crews’ progress, but the planned work hours are:

 

  • 7 a.m. – 8 p.m. weekdays
  • 9 a.m. – 8 p.m. Saturdays
  • 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Sunday

 

 

CLOSURE | DETOUR

 

Between Tuesday, May 28 and Saturday, June 1, Western Avenue will be a dead-end street south of Virginia Street. Businesses and sidewalks will be open north and south of Seneca Street, and the street will provide local access. But people walking, biking and driving will need to use Alaskan Way or First Avenue in order to cross Seneca Street.

 

EFFECTS OF CONSTRUCTION

 

The work will unavoidably produce noise, dust and vibration, but crews will work to mitigate those effects where possible. The process for removing this ramp is benefitting from crews’ experience working on earlier sections of the viaduct, and Kiewit has refined their methods since the project began.

 

NEXT STEPS

 

When University Street reopens on June 1, it will be a connection point between the waterfront and Western Avenue. The intersection of Post Avenue and Seneca Street will also close for up to seven days in late May or early June as crews remove the ramp overhead. After the ramp is removed, crews will need to conduct follow-up utility work where the ramp once met First Avenue. Crews will also restore the sidewalk on the west side of First Avenue and build a wall and rail in the hole where the ramp once stood.

 

This is Seattle’s Alaskan Way, looking north from the Marion Street pedestrian bridge. The first photo was taken a day before the Alaskan Way Viaduct closed for good. The second photo shows the same view with the viaduct demolished between Marion and Seneca streets. Photo courtesy of WSDOT.

 

Want more information?

Thanks for your patience as crews work to complete this project. Visit the Alaskan Way Viaduct Replacement Program webpage to learn more about the work, or call the 24-hour program hotline at 1-888-AWV-LINE (298-5463) or email viaduct@wsdot.wa.gov.

 

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