October 12, 2011

SR 520 bridge and highway to close Oct. 15-17

Construction crews will close the State Route 520 bridge and highway Saturday night through Monday morning to set 24 massive concrete girders as part of a new overpass in Medina. Husky fans will still be able to get to and from the game before the road closes for construction, the Washington State Department of Transportation says.

Crews will close all SR 520 ramps and highway lanes at 8 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 15, from Montlake Boulevard in Seattle to I-405 in Bellevue. Lanes will reopen by 5 a.m. Monday, Oct. 17. SR 520 will remain open between I-5 and Montlake Boulevard, and from I-405 east to Redmond.

The football game begins at 12:30 p.m. Saturday, giving fans plenty of time to travel after the game before SR 520 closes at 8 p.m. for construction. Soccer fans also can cross SR 520 to get to the 7:30 p.m. Saturday Sounders FC game, but will need to find another way across or around the lake after the game.

“While the highway is closed this weekend, drivers need to have a plan so they can avoid delays on alternate routes,” said Brian Dobbins, Washington State Department of Transportation construction manager for the SR 520 Eastside Transit and HOV Project. “Installing these girders requires parking two large cranes on the highway and very precise work. Crews will focus on working quickly and carefully to complete the installation in time to reopen the highway to traffic Monday morning.”

WSDOT encourages drivers to plan ahead when considering weekend travel. As many as 165,000 weekend drivers who typically travel SR 520 must seek alternate routes across and around Lake Washington. The heaviest traffic is expected on Interstates 5 and 90 heading into Seattle and on I-405 approaching I-90. WSDOT is adjusting the I-90 express lane schedules Sunday to help improve traffic flow.

Besides using two cranes to set girders in Medina, crews also plan to create a median work zone area east of 84th Avenue Northeast to begin work on a highway overpass similar to the one under construction at Evergreen Point Road. On Monday morning, eastbound drivers can expect a slight lane shift as they approach and pass the new work area.

Closure information and detour maps are online.