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WSDOT shares the future of 520 construction

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Date:  Monday, February 04, 2013

Contact: Suanne Pelley, WSDOT SR 520 Communications, 206-770-3578, 206-437-5717 (cell)

Open houses Feb. 5 and 6 will explain next steps for the new “west approach bridge north”

SEATTLE – Construction of the structure connecting the new floating bridge to Montlake will begin next year, and community members and State Route 520 travelers can view architectural and construction plans at open houses Feb. 5 and 6.

The Washington State Department of Transportation secured funding to begin construction of the “west approach bridge north” phase in 2014. Designed to modern earthquake standards, the three-lane, 1.2-mile-long structure includes a bicycle/pedestrian path and will connect travelers from the new floating bridge to the Montlake interchange in Seattle.

When completed in 2016, the bridge will provide six lanes of traffic between the Montlake area and SR 202 in Redmond. The new structure will carry three lanes of westbound traffic, while the existing west approach bridge will carry three lanes of eastbound traffic. This configuration will remain until additional funding is secured for the west approach bridge south and other construction elements.

“Continuing construction west of the new floating bridge will help improve safety and reliability and provide more traveling options,” said Julie Meredith, SR 520 program director. “Our construction plan for the west side of the bridge allows us to address another vulnerable structure in the corridor.”

WSDOT will host open houses in Bellevue and Seattle Feb. 5 and 6, respectively. In addition to information about the new bridge, WSDOT staff will share the latest construction updates for other work taking place in Seattle, Aberdeen, Kenmore and Tacoma and on the Eastside. WSDOT tolling staff will be available to answer questions about SR 520 tolling and the ongoing I-90 tolling study.

WSDOT will also begin or fund required mitigation projects associated with the structure’s construction, including a new Arboretum trail, wetland and park mitigation, a stormwater treatment facility at the old Museum of History & Industry site, and removal of the westbound Arboretum off-ramp and the unused R.H. Thomson ramps.

Designs for the west approach bridge have been refined through the 2011-2012 Seattle Community Design Process that encompassed seven public design sessions and received more than 1,600 public comments. The current plan is forward-compatible with future designs for the entire SR 520 corridor, including potential light rail.

Open house details

  • Bellevue: 4:30 to 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 5, at North Bellevue Community Center, 4063 148th Avenue Northeast.
  • Seattle: 4:30 to 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 6, at St. Demetrios Church, 2100 Boyer Avenue East.

Details about the new SR 520 can be found at www.wsdot.wa.gov/projects/sr520bridge.

Americans with Disabilities Act: The meeting sites are accessible to persons with disabilities. Accommodations for people with disabilities can be arranged with advance notice by calling 206-770-3500.

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