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We have finished pouring structural concrete inside the West Seattle Bridge, completing a major repair milestone and moving us closer to reopening the bridge

Structural concrete work inside the West Seattle Bridge. Photo: SDOT

We have exciting news about the progress on West Seattle Bridge final repairs. Today, our construction contractor finished pouring structural concrete inside the bridge, forming the structures that will hold new steel cables essential to strengthening the bridge. Completing this crucial project milestone marks the end of a challenging process that affected our reopening schedule.

We still expect to reopen the bridge in mid-2022 and can now work with our construction contractor to finalize the sequence of the remaining work.

Concrete work was originally scheduled to begin in February and was delayed by a concrete strike that affected practically every transportation and construction project in the Puget Sound region. We appreciate and thank the concrete suppliers and drivers who came together for the community to enable projects like the West Seattle Bridge to move forward again.

We never stopped working on the bridge, despite the concrete strike. We adjusted the sequence of work activities so that we could complete other strengthening measures like sealing cracks with epoxy and wrapping the bridge walls with carbon fiber.

This week’s deliveries involved concrete trucks making back-to-back pours. Our construction contractor poured 15 truckloads of concrete in two days, more than half of the 245 cubic yards of structural concrete needed for the entire project.

The concrete was piped into the hollow bridge interior through a hole in the deck and was used to create massive blocks that form the foundations of the bridge’s additional post-tensioning system. Once the concrete structures have cured after 28 days, they’ll be capable of holding more than 20 million pounds of force. 

The next step in the post-tensioning process is to install ducts in the new concrete blocks so that we can thread steel cables through the length of the bridge. After the concrete has fully cured, we will tighten these cables to strengthen the bridge and prevent future cracking.

We appreciate your patience, and we’re excited to share this progress report with you on how we’re getting closer to reopening the West Seattle Bridge.

Structural concrete work taking place inside the West Seattle Bridge.
Structural concrete work taking place inside the West Seattle Bridge. Photo: SDOT