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Construction Ahead: Ballard and Interbay-area paving, safety, and bridge projects moving forward | LEVY DOLLARS AT WORK

View of 15th Ave NW and Leary Way NW, just north of the Ballard Bridge. Photo credit: SDOT

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Project overview

15th Ave W/NW & Ballard Bridge Paving & Safety Project

This project aims to keep people and goods moving and includes enhancements to make the RapidRide D bus line more reliable and to make travel safer for everyone. We completed final design on the 15th Ave W/NW & Ballard Bridge Paving & Safety Project in July 2023, setting the stage for selecting a construction contractor. The final design was highly informed by community input. It includes the original elements from earlier design stages, as well as several new safety and mobility enhancements. You can read more on the project web page.

Leary Way Bridge Seismic Retrofit Project

Nearby, we’re preparing to begin work on the seismic reinforcement of the Leary Way Bridge (which connects the Ballard Bridge into the Ballard neighborhood). This project will be built at the same time as the improvements mentioned above. It includes earthquake safety improvements to strengthen the existing bridge and make it less vulnerable to earthquakes, as well as bridge maintenance work. You can read more on the project web page.

Hiring a project construction contractor

We advertised the construction contract for this project on January 3 for interested contractors to bid on. Construction will start as soon as spring 2024 and will continue through 2025. We recognize that the start date for construction is later than originally anticipated. We needed to give our agency partners enough time to review and approve our final design plans for the project. Thank you for your patience and understanding.

In the meantime, we are preparing for construction by:

  • Reaching out to businesses, schools, and residents in the project area
  • Coordinating with nearby projects such as the Route 40 project to minimize travel impacts
  • Developing street closure detour routes based on responses from our 2023 public survey
  • Planning for some temporary closures of the Ballard Bridge as part of the project, typically on weekends. Additional details are listed further below. These closures are necessary to replace expansion joints, improve earthquake safety on the Leary Way Bridge (located directly north of the Ballard Bridge), and safely complete paving and other construction work on the Ballard Bridge itself.
Several people meet and talk with each other at a community event inside a building. A large flip chart is to the right, with lights above.
The SDOT project team meets with members of the Magnolia community to talk about project details and anticipated construction effects on January 17, 2024. Photo credit: SDOT

What to expect during project construction

We will provide more details about the construction schedule and specific activities once our contractor is on-board, but in general you can expect:

  • Temporary lane and street closures for drivers
  • Temporary vehicle and bus detours
  • Temporary sidewalk and crossing closures and detours for people walking and rolling
  • Temporary bus stop relocations
  • Changes to on-street parking
  • Noise, dust, and vibrations during work hours (typically Monday – Friday, 7 AM – 4 PM)
  • Construction staging and parking impacts near work sites
  • Occasional night or weekend work, as needed

What to expect during Ballard Bridge work

As part of the project, we will occasionally need to temporarily close the Ballard Bridge, primarily over certain weekends. Our goal is to maintain access for people walking, biking, and rolling whenever possible while the Ballard Bridge closures take place, but we will need to confirm our construction plans with our contractor once they’re on board. We will share more information this spring as timing and other details are confirmed – please stay tuned.

We recognize the Ballard Bridge is an important and highly used travel route for many people, and we will provide additional information about specific closures, as well as available detour routes for travelers. We’ll be working on finalizing our temporary bridge closure plans and will share more information widely with the community.

Consider using alternative travel modes

While we’re making improvements to our streets and construction continues, we encourage you to consider exploring different ways to get around. Using alternative modes of transportation will help minimize traffic and congestion around construction areas.

Next time you’re planning on driving through a construction zone, think about giving one of these options a try if it works for your travel needs:

If you do need to drive, please consider carpooling with a friend, family member, or co-worker.

Project area map

Map describing the project area, including the Ballard Bridge, Ballard neighborhood, and north Interbay neighborhood. Several improvements and changes to crossing signals, medians, bus lanes, and paving are listed on the map.
Map of the project area and key features included. Graphic: SDOT.

Both projects are funded by the voter-approved Levy to Move Seattle, and represent important investments in safety and mobility through this highly traveled corridor connecting vibrant neighborhoods and business districts on both sides of the Ship Canal.

The Leary Way Bridge seismic retrofit project also includes funding from a federal grant. We’d like to thank our federal partners for their funding support, including the Biden Administration, Senator Patty Murray, Senator Maria Cantwell, and Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal.

Contact Us

You can learn more on our project webpage, sign up for email updates, or reach us by:

  • Emailing the project team at   
  • Calling the project team at (206) 512-3950 (leave a voicemail and we will return your call) 

Need a Translation?

The City of Seattle is paving 15th Ave W/NW from W Emerson St to NW 57th St. To request translation of these materials, call (206) 512-3950.

Como parte del programa de pavimentación del impuesto Levy to Move Seattle, el Departamento de Transporte de Seattle (SDOT) está pavimentando 15th Ave W/NW entre W Emerson St y NW 57th St a partir del verano de 2023. Para solicitar la traducción de este material, llame al (206) 512-3950.

作為「移動西雅圖交通徵稅鋪路計畫」的一部分,西雅圖交通部 (SDOT) 最早將於 2023 年夏季鋪設 15th Ave W/NW 從 W Emerson St 到 NW 57th St 的路面。如 需这些资料的译文,或是在会议时需要口译服务,请致电 (206) 512-3950