Local Information

One more inspection for the road: SR 99/Alaskan Way Viaduct closed Oct. 19-20

Tuesday, October 16, 2018 - 14:18

10/17 Update: This weekend's northbound closure has been shortened. Northbound SR 99 will close Saturday, Oct. 20 at 6 a.m. and reopen Saturday afternoon by 5 p.m. The southbound closure remains unchanged.

Laura Newborn, Alaskan Way Viaduct Replacement Program communications, 206-805-2871; 206-639-8577 (mobile) 

Final scheduled inspection closure starts Friday night and ends early Monday

SEATTLE – Both directions of State Route 99 through Seattle will close this weekend, Oct. 19-22, as bridge inspectors for the Washington State Department of Transportation complete their 33rd and final scheduled closure inspection of the Alaskan Way Viaduct.

In 2001, the powerful Nisqually earthquake shook the Puget Sound Region, damaging the viaduct that carries SR 99 through Seattle. The structure was repaired and strengthened, and a rigorous inspection program began. Twice a year, inspectors fully close the viaduct to make sure it remains safe for driving.

“Our bridge crews know every square inch of the Alaskan Way Viaduct through Seattle,” said Brian Nielsen, administrator of the Alaskan Way Viaduct Replacement Program. “It is the most inspected structure in the state. Our engineers will make sure it continues to stay safe as we approach opening its replacement – the new SR 99 tunnel.”

Weekend travelers should plan ahead and expect delays. WSDOT encourages drivers to “know before you go,” and use WSDOT's travel tools and the Seattle Department of Transportation’s travelers information page.

Closure Details

  • Both directions of SR 99 through downtown Seattle will close at 9 p.m. Friday, Oct. 19 and reopen by 5 a.m. Monday, Oct. 22. The closure is from the north end of the Battery Street Tunnel to South Spokane Street. In addition to inspection work, crews will pour concrete for the future highway at the SR 99 tunnel’s south portal

Looking ahead

The viaduct is scheduled to permanently close on Jan. 11 2019, marking the start of three weeks of intensive roadwork to #realign99 to open the new tunnel. WSDOT urges all drivers to make a plan (pdf 500 kb) to change commutes during the longest major highway closure ever in the Seattle area.

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