UW Today

June 13, 2011

520 bridge to be closed Friday night to Monday morning, June 17-20

The State Route 520 floating bridge and highway will be closed from 11 p.m. Friday, June 17, to 5 a.m. Monday, June 20, between Montlake Boulevard in Seattle and Interstate 405 in Bellevue. Night work is planned, and neighbors near the work zone are likely to hear construction noise.

As drivers think about alternate routes the weekend of June 17 through 20, they should expect the heaviest traffic midday Saturday and Sunday on I-5 and I-90 heading into Seattle, and on I-405 approaching I-90. Details of the closure and detour maps are online.

All 520 ramps in the construction zone also will close, except for the 108th Avenue Northeast on-ramp to eastbound 520. State Route 520 from I-5 to Montlake Boulevard will remain open to traffic.

Crews will close 520 for construction on the Eastside, as well as geotechnical drilling near Montlake Boulevard, drawspan testing on the floating bridge and installation of a large tolling sign near the east highrise.

The centerpieces of the 520 weekend work on the Eastside are the demolition of a pedestrian bridge near Medina and the installation of a massive prebuilt concrete fish-passable culvert in Bellevue.

Crews must quickly carve a 30-foot-deep trench across all lanes of 520 west of Bellevue Way Northeast and install concrete panels spanning 130 feet. The trench will be refilled and paved in time for Mondays morning commute. The new, larger culvert will improve fish migration and is the first of eight culverts crossing 520 that will be installed between Medina and Bellevue during the next three years.

Other work this weekend includes precutting the highway for future culvert installations, removing two overhead electronic sign gantries and constructing a temporary combined off-ramp to Bellevue Way Northeast. An estimated 11,250 drivers exit the highway to Bellevue Way Northeast each day, and they will begin using the reconfigured off-ramps and temporary intersection beginning Monday, June 20. A permanent intersection will be built during the next two years as part of a rebuilt Bellevue Way interchange.

“Crews will be packing in a lot of work this weekend on 520, and well have several more weekend closures to continue construction,” Dobbins said. “The next complete closure of the floating bridge and highway is just a few weeks away, from July 8 through 11. Taking advantage of weekend-long closures for major construction allows us to keep traffic flowing for commuters and businesses during the work week.”

The Eastside Transit and HOV Project will widen 520 to six lanes from Medina to Bellevue. The project includes rebuilding interchanges, installing fish-passable culverts, and building highway lids and transit stops in the center of the highway. WSDOT awarded the $306 million design-build contract to Eastside Corridor Constructors, a joint venture of Granite Construction Company and PCL Construction Services.

Complete 520 highway construction closures are limited to no more than 20 weekends during the next three years. The completed corridor is scheduled to be open to traffic in December 2013.