With your help, we’ve completed the Reconnect West Seattle Implementation Plan!

Click the image above to watch the recording of the 8th West Seattle Bridge Community Task Force Meeting.

At the eighth West Seattle Bridge Community Task Force meeting, we shared an update on the Reconnect West Seattle Implementation Plan

THANK YOU to 17,000+ of you who responded to the Reconnect West Seattle survey and Neighborhood Prioritization Ballots! Based on your feedback and our ongoing community engagement, we’ve finalized the Reconnect West Seattle Implementation Plan

Reconnect West Seattle is an iterative, ongoing dialogue that envisions how we can achieve a reconnected West Seattle peninsula. 

We’re working to support levels of travel that are similar to what they were before the High-Rise Bridge closure, while reducing environmental injustices that impact Duwamish Valley communities. 

In an ongoing effort to mitigate the impacts, we’re taking five actions (shown in the graphic below) informed by the community.

These will enable increased transit ridership, more bicycle and pedestrian trips, and greater safety on our streets and sidewalks, especially in neighborhoods impacted most by detour route traffic. 

This graphic shows where we are in the Reconnect West Seattle process and what to expect in the coming weeks and months. 

The Reconnect West Seattle Implementation Plan describes initial planned investments for neighborhood mitigation projects, bike projects, freight projects, and projects/services to support mobility. 

These project lists build on the 175 changes we’ve made in and around the peninsula since the closure of the High-Rise Bridge. This is not an exhaustive list of what we’ll do to support neighborhoods and travelers, mitigate traffic impacts, and ensure equitable mobility.  

This map shows in-progress, planned 2020 and planned 2021 projects

  • In 2021, we’re adding the Home Zone Program to coordinate, combine, and deliver safety and speed reduction efforts. A home zone plan involves the entire neighborhood working together to prioritize improvements that calm traffic, and improve pedestrian mobility and neighborhood livability. 
  • We’re making an initial investment of $6 million for 2020-2021 project implementation, and additional funding allocation will be informed by project scoping, race/social equity, population, travel demand, and other considerations. 
  • We’re implementing 23 community-prioritized actions in 2020 to improve mobility and neighborhood safety. This includes installing speed radar signs on S Cloverdale St and a protected bike lane on West Marginal Way SW. 
  • In the Fall of 2020, 32 projects/program elements will be moving into the project development phase for 2021 implementation. This includes traffic calming measures and exploring Stay Healthy Street options in South Park.  
A reminder of our mode-share goals, which are within reach with projects and programs implemented with agency partners and employers regionally! 

At the Community Task Force Meeting, we also shared updates about the bridge stabilization work, dynamic Low Bridge Access Policy, and the cost-benefit analysis that’ll be used to inform our decision to repair or replace the West Seattle High-Rise Bridge. 

Check out our weekly construction updates, where you’ll find an up-to-date status on work we’ve completed, what’s in progress, and what’s up and coming for bridge stabilization.

Bridge Stabilization Work

Crews use the work platforms already in place to build additional scaffolding. The scaffolding will be used to reach the exterior sides of the girders to apply the carbon fiber wrap. 
  • Stabilization measures include carbon fiber wrapping on weakened areas of the bridge, adding post-tensioning inside the girders, and injecting epoxy in cracks wider than 0.3 mm.
  • Work is expected to continue for the next several months and construction updates will be emailed and posted to the SDOT blog weekly. 

Low Bridge Access Policy

We’re making changes to our current Low Bridge Access Policy to enable automated enforcement, and accommodate travel needs of International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) workers, essential worker vanpools, employer shuttles, and more.  

West Seattle Low Bridge. Photo Credit: SDOT Flickr. 
  • We’re taking a phased approach to automated enforcement. Automated enforcement includes things like cameras that allow rules to be applied remotely. 
  • We’ll be forming a Task Force subcommittee to inform how we allocate limited space on the Low Bridge to various types of traffic (in other words, our “allocation policies”). 
  • This subcommittee will be composed of 4-5 Task Force members representing businesses, employers, maritime/industrial bridge users, laborers, and schools alongside staff from the City of Seattle, King County Metro, and the Port of Seattle. 

Cost-Benefit Analysis

We’re making progress on our Cost-Benefit Analysis (CBA), which will be used to inform the City’s decision to repair or replace the High-Rise Bridge.  

CBA roadmap, showing key milestones and how it has been informed by the Community Task Force.

Portions of the CBA continue to be shaped by Community Task Force feedback and we are examining the pros and cons of multiple options. 

Peek the WSB Community Task Force Meeting presentation and our blog for more details and images on these categories of options:  


Option What It Means 
Temporary Shoring 
Supporting the bridge with a temporary external steel structure 
Similar, but more comprehensive than the measures we have already been taking
Accelerated superstructure replacement 
Replacing sections of the bridge, but keeping the foundation 
Accelerated bridge replacement 
A variety of full replacement options that would be in the same footprint as the current bridge 
Immersed tube tunnel 
A tunnel to replace the existing bridge 

Our West Seattle Bridge Community Task Force blog from August 6 also provides a detailed overview of the phases of the CBA we’re undertaking. 

We’re now in Phase 2, where we: 

1) Score (or “weight”) each of the evaluation criteria. 

Some criteria are more important to the community than others, so those criteria will hold more “weight” in the CBA. We received input on which criteria are most important – or should hold the most weight – by the Technical Advisory Panel (TAP) and the Community Task Force. 

Mobility impacts, seismic resilience/safety, and constructability had the highest weights, so this criteria will strongly inform the remaining Phase 2 work. 

Mobility: How will this repair/replace concept contribute to the movement of people and goods and overall access?  How will it impact vulnerable communities (seniors, people with disabilities and others) from accessing social service needs such as meals, healthcare services, case management, and other vital services? 

Seismic resilience and safety: What seismic standards will the repair/replace concept meet? How will seismic upgrades be incorporated into the design? 

Constructability: Will the contractor be able to build this repair/replace concept given site constraints and schedule? 

2) Next, we’ll introduce rough order of magnitude (ROM) costs (the earliest cost estimate in the project), quantify the results, compare the options, and present the results to the TAP for feedback. 

In October, the Community Task Force will be able to see the results of the CBA. Later in the fall, the final CBA report will help the Mayor decide on whether to repair or replace the bridge. 

The West Seattle Bridge Community Task Force is one of the many ways that we ensure the communities’ voices are at the center of our West Seattle Bridge decisions.

Community Task Force members represent neighborhoods, industries, government, and services across West Seattle and nearby communities.   

To learn more: