SR 529 will close overnight June 9, then reduce to one lane in each direction June 10 for northbound Snohomish River Bridge repairs

UPDATE: This work has been rescheduled to begin Sunday, June 9, with the highway reduced to one lane in each direction Monday, June 10.

97-year-old northbound structure will close for four months for mechanical rehabilitation and painting

EVERETT – Beginning June 10, a trip across the Snohomish River on State Route 529 is going to give travelers a taste of the past. On that day, the highway will reduce to one lane in each direction for four months. The work is weather dependent and could be postponed due to rain.

Contractor crews working for the Washington State Department of Transportation will close the northbound SR 529 Snohomish River Bridge for mechanical repairs and painting. With the closure, both directions of travel will use the bridge that currently carries the two southbound lanes of SR 529.

Both directions of SR 529 will close at 10 p.m. Sunday, June 9, so crews can open the crossovers that will shift one lane of northbound traffic onto the southbound bridge, then back onto the northbound roadway north of the bridge. The highway will reopen, with one lane in each direction, at 5 a.m. Monday, June 10.

Why the work is needed

Until 1954, when the southbound bridge opened, each direction of the highway used one lane of what is now the northbound bridge. But that 97-year-old structure needs repairs to the system that raises and lowers the lift span so larger boats can pass underneath on the Snohomish River. While the mechanical work is occurring, the contractor will also clean and paint the structure.

“To complete this work, we must leave the northbound bridge in the raised position,” WSDOT Project Engineer Amelia Scharrer said. “Federal maritime law requires us to maintain access for boats on the Snohomish River. Because we will not be able to move the bridge’s draw span while work is happening, we have to leave it in the up position during this work.”

Plan ahead for Everett/Marysville travel

A lot has changed on SR 529 in the past century. Cars and trucks are larger than they were when the original bridge was built in 1927. And of course, Interstate 5 did not exist. In the 1950s, increasing travel led WSDOT to build new bridges and roadway for the highway known then as US 99 across the flats between Everett and Marysville. Today, about 35,000 vehicles use the highway each day.

The southbound SR 529 bridge’s lanes are 11 feet wide. Northbound and southbound travel across the bridge will be separated by pylons with the speed limit reduced to 45 mph.

“Reducing travel in each direction from two lanes to one is going to mean more congestion and increased travel time,” Scharrer said. “While I-5 already has a lot of traffic, people still should consider using the freeway when traveling between Everett and Marysville.”

Cyclists and others

Most people who walk, bicycle or roll across SR 529 use the northbound shoulder, but with the bridge in the raised position, it won’t be an option. Instead, WSDOT’s contractor will provide a shuttle that will take people through the work zone.

The on-demand shuttle will operate 24 hours a day, although it may take up to 30 minutes for the vehicle to arrive. The northern pick-up and drop-off point will be located north of Steamboat Slough at 40th Place Northeast and 37th Avenue Northeast. The southern pick-up/drop-off will be located at Broadway and Seventh Street in Everett.

Real-time travel information is available from the WSDOT mobile app, the WSDOT Travel Center Map or by signing up for WSDOT's email updates.

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