WSDOT has canceled the 520 Bridge closure scheduled for this weekend due to “expected inclement weather that could affect the construction work.” The work will be made up at a later date. As you were.
Time for another 520 Bridge closure weekend. This one will be from 11pm Friday to 5am Monday — from Montlake Blvd in Seattle to I-405 in Bellevue. Plan accordingly for trips to and from the Eastside as I-90 traffic tends to get ugly when 520 shuts down. The I-90 express lanes will aim westbound on Saturday and Sunday to help folks get to events in Seattle. Crews will shift the eastbound lanes over the weekend, so commuters should expect a new route through construction zones starting next week. “On Monday, eastbound commuters will need to pay extra attention after crossing the floating bridge,” said Brian Dobbins, construction manager for WSDOT. “The new traffic layout will take drivers under a newly built section of roadway for the first time.”
In other 520 news, WSDOT Secretary Lynn Peterson today announced a six month review of state mega-projects including the new 520 Bridge and Highway 99 tunnel in Seattle. This comes on the heels of “discipline letters” issued to workers responsible for design and oversight flaws in the 520 pontoons. Former WSDOT project manager Ron Paananen will lead the review, reporting on where things went wrong with 520 while also recommending changes to other projects if similar institutional problems are found.
Meanwhile, floating bridge construction continues on the lake. An important milestone will be reached during the Friday morning commute, when crews will drop the last of the massive anchors into the waters off Madison Park. Eventually cables attached to these anchors will secure the new bridge against wind and waves. Here’s a typical “fluke anchor” under construction in Kenmore.