The Voice for Industry
|April 1, 2009|
Tunnel Endorsed by Maritime Trades
A regional coalition of maritime trade unions gave a key endorsement this week to the proposal to replace the Alaskan Way Viaduct with a deep bore tunnel.
The endorsement was announced Monday by the Puget Sound Ports Council which represents 14 unions for sailors, mates, marine engineers and shipyard workers.
The endorsement is conditioned on city and state transportation planners finding ways to maintain access for north and south Seattle business operations that presently rely on the Alaskan Way Viaduct as a through route. Access issues must be addressed during environmental review of the deep bore option.
A bill supporting the deep bore tunnel is pending before the Washington State Legislature's House Transportation Committee. It cleared the state Senate Transportation Committee last month
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South Spokane Street Viaduct Project Update
Background Information: The South Spokane Street Viaduct Project is now under way with completion scheduled for December 2011. The Seattle Department of Transportation's $168M project extends from State Route 99 to 6th Avenue South [6th] along South Spokane Street. A new off-ramp from the South Spokane Street Viaduct will be installed for eastbound traffic heading to 4th Avenue South [4th], and the Viaduct itself will be widened by 41 feet to the north, including an all-new on- and off- ramp at 1st Avenue South [1st] for westbound traffic. In addition, the lower roadway [Spokane] will be completely rebuilt in concrete with curbs, sidewalks and better pedestrian and bicycle access. Construction on the widening is expected to begin in third quarter of 2009.
4th Avenue South Eastbound Off Ramp Project: The utility relocation that has been occurring on Spokane Street since September 2008 including replacing a water main segment is now substantially complete and work on the new eastbound off-ramp at 4th has begun. Crews will be drilling shafts 60 to 100 feet deep over the next few months to support the new structure. They will begin just east of the railroad tracks at 2nd and will move eastward.
Eastbound Spokane Street traffic and impacts: (1)Through traffic on eastbound lower Spokane is currently open from East Marginal Way to 1st, closed between 1st and 6th, and open east of 6th. (2)Due to the current closure between 4th and 6th, bus routes normally turning east onto Spokane Street from the E-3 Busway are now using 6th southbound to reach Spokane, starting at Lander. These transit routes will return to the Busway when eastbound Spokane is reopened between 4th and 6th in late June 2009. (3)Eastbound Spokane between SR 99 and 1st is scheduled to close to through traffic from July to October 2009.
Important Traffic Advisory:Drivers heading westbound on the lower roadway should avoid turning left under the Spokane Street Viaduct between 2nd and 6th except at defined intersections (1st or 6th). The area under the Spokane viaduct is once again an active construction site and entering this area presents a significant danger to personnel and likely interference with heavy equipment. Non-construction vehicles in this area are at risk of receiving a moving violation in a work zone, which can result in double penalties. A portion of the detour route around the lower eastbound Spokane closure is itself under construction 1st Avenue South between Stacy and Horton. During weekdays from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. traffic is restricted to one southbound and two northbound lanes of traffic. Evenings and weekends there is just one lane in either direction. Construction started in mid-February with completion scheduled for early September 2009. For more information go to the First Avenue Rebuild project website at: http://www.seattle.gov/transportation/first_s_rebuild.htm
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