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LEVY DOLLARS AT WORK | Repaving & bridge safety upgrades in Ballard start in 2023 – please take our survey to help us minimize traffic effects

People crossing the street at 15th Ave NW and NW Market St. Photo credit: SDOT.


  • Thank you, Seattle! Your Levy to Move Seattle dollars are funding major improvements on 15th Ave W/NW and a seismic retrofit of the Leary Way Bridge (just north of the Ballard Bridge), which will make it safer in the event of an earthquake.
  • We’re currently designing paving and other improvements along 15th Ave W/NW, from NW 57th St in Ballard to W Emerson St in Interbay.
  • Construction is expected to take place from summer 2023 to fall 2024.
  • Please take our survey by January 13, 2023! This will help us minimize construction and travel effects on you and your neighbors.

We have reached the 60% level of design for the 15th Ave W/NW and Ballard Bridge Paving Project! Now is a great time to learn more about our current plans, and provide feedback before the design is complete.

As a reminder, the 60% design milestone is when we know generally what the project will look like but are still making small refinements. At 60% design, we finalize details like landscape amenities using input from the community, engineers, and consultants.

Map of the project area from NW 57th St in Ballard to W Emerson St in Interbay. The area of repaving along 15th Ave W/NW is shown in a blue line, with the Ballard Bridge in an orange bar. The Leary Way Bridge seismic retrofit is shown with black brackets, north of the Ballard Bridge.
Map of the project area from NW 57th St in Ballard to W Emerson St in Interbay. Graphic credit: SDOT.

The latest plans include: 

  • Replacing pavement along 15th Ave W/NW, from W Emerson St to NW 57th St 
  • Improving sidewalks, driveways, and stormwater drainage in select locations  
  • Refreshing crosswalk signs and markings with new paint on existing locations along 15th Ave NW 
  • Adding new red street markings on 15th Ave NW for existing northbound bus lanes between NW 52nd St and NW Market St 
  • Replacing the expansion joints on the Ballard Bridge
  • Improving earthquake safety by strengthening the Leary Way Bridge (located just north of the Ballard Bridge)

We also continue to look for opportunities to enhance safety with the project. To see our full 60% design plans, please visit our project webpage. If you have any feedback, please contact our project team.

We expect to reach our 90% design milestone as soon as early 2023. At the 90% design milestone, we are preparing for the construction stage. This includes creating mailers, developing the construction schedule, coordinating with our construction team, and more.

What you can expect during construction

Typical construction activities can include:

  • Temporary lane and street closures for people driving
  • Temporary vehicle detour routes
  • Temporary sidewalk and crossing closures and detours for people walking and rolling
  • Temporary bus stop relocations
  • Disruptions to on-street parking
  • Noise, dust, and vibrations during work hours
  • Construction staging and parking impacts near the work sites
  • Changes in construction schedule due to unforeseen circumstances (i.e., weather, soil conditions, etc.)

We want to hear from you! Please take our travel survey.

We launched a brief survey to gather information from residents, commuters, and people who work at nearby industrial and local businesses on how they use 15th Ave W/NW and the Ballard Bridge. The survey helps inform how we can minimize traffic disruptions during construction and help people find alternate travel routes.

The survey is available here and is open through January 13, 2023.

Aerial view of Interbay, the Ballard Bridge, and northwest Seattle, looking north. A satellite image shows the bridge and nearby buildings, streets, trees, and other landscape items in the foreground and background.
Aerial view of Interbay, the Ballard Bridge, and northwest Seattle, looking north. Image credit: Google Maps

We are also making earthquake safety upgrades on the Leary Way Bridge!

The Levy to Move Seattle funds our bridge seismic retrofit program. We have already completed seismic retrofits on 4 bridges with Levy dollars since 2016! Additionally, we’ve constructed three new bridges to modern seismic standards: the Lander St Bridge, John Lewis Memorial Bridge, and Fairview Ave N Bridge.

Located just north of the Ballard Bridge, the Leary Way Bridge carries traffic over NW Leary Way, via 15th Ave NW.

The Leary Way Bridge project includes several modifications to strengthen the existing bridge, beyond typical maintenance, and make the bridge less vulnerable in the event of an earthquake.

These include:

  • Strengthening the bridge’s cap beams, columns, footings, and abutments (parts of the bridge structure)
  • Installing ground anchors
  • Repairing cracks and damaged concrete
  • Replacing the bridge expansion joints 
View of the Leary Way Bridge. The bridge spans above Leary Way NW. A traffic signal, street sign, street, and cars are in the rest of the image, with a large building in the background showing a UW Medicine sign.
View of the Leary Way Bridge. Photo credit: Google Maps

To learn more, please visit the project webpage.

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