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Old January 5th, 2012, 12:13 AM   #1001
CityView Jim
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Here comes the next traffic "nightmare!" In quotes as every time a nightmare is predicted the resilience of the Seattle driver proves 'em wrong.

Mercer shifts to the new lanes (only 3 instead of 4) in a couple weeks on January 9th so work can begin on the old lanes to become three eastbound lanes instead of 4. I can't imagine those taking as long as the westbound lanes took. We'll see.

Mercer Corridor Project:
I-5 on- and off-ramp closures at Mercer Street: January 6 – 9


SEATTLE—Drivers may want to plan ahead for the upcoming I-5 on- and off-ramp closures at Mercer Street, tentatively planned for the weekend of January 6-9, weather permitting. The ramps will close at 11 p.m. on Friday, January 6 and will remain closed until 5 a.m. on Monday, January 9. The closures are needed to prepare for the next stage of the Mercer East Project when traffic is switched to newly constructed lanes and work begins in the old lanes.



Traffic Switch Begins January 9;

Boren, Terry and Westlake will be Closed at Republican



Starting Monday, January 9, “Stage 2” of the Mercer East Project begins. Traffic on Mercer Street will switch to the three new lanes just to the north of the existing lanes. The new lanes will continue to provide access to the I-5 on-ramps and to Fairview Avenue N. At the same time, Boren, Terry, and Westlake avenues will be open only to local access traffic between Mercer, and Republican streets, and through traffic coming from the south will need to take an alternate route to reach Mercer Street such as Ninth Avenue or Dexter Avenue. Closure of these streets (Boren, Terry and Westlake) at Mercer is necessary in order for the contractor to complete work in the area of the old lanes on Mercer Street.
The Mercer Mess lane switch is being postponed from this coming Monday to January 16th. The offramps will be open this weekend, but close January 13th - 16th when the ramps open and traffice then will run on the newly built lanes to the north of the existing ones.
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Old January 26th, 2012, 10:04 AM   #1002
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The Mercer shift is finally coming this weekend:

http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/htm...street26m.html

edit: They make mention of finding an old model-T engine being found under the street.
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Old January 26th, 2012, 10:44 PM   #1003
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If the weather cooperates (the switchover was cancelled the previous 3 weekends due to weather).
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Old January 27th, 2012, 05:52 AM   #1004
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If the weather cooperates (the switchover was cancelled the previous 3 weekends due to weather).
And Likely will be cancelled again due to weather if the current models are correct with a lot of rain this weekend which will prevent striping.
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Old January 30th, 2012, 05:29 AM   #1005
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Alaskan Way Viaduct (01/14):





















Spokane St Viaduct (01/14):









































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Old January 31st, 2012, 12:30 AM   #1006
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Article in todays Times about the Mercer Mess.

http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/htm...raffic30m.html

The article fleshes out an issue I am particularly interested in: the reconnection of the street grid above the coming North Portal of the tunnel for SR99.

"Seattle DOT's Kemper offers a bullish vision of the future road grid, when streets that dead-end at Aurora Avenue North are extended east as planned, by 2016, when that part of Aurora is converted into the Highway 99 tunnel:

Thomas Street would remain a calm lane suitable for pedestrians, cyclists and the streetcar.

Harrison Street would carry buses directly from the Space Needle to the middle of office campuses, maybe continuing up to Capitol Hill. Long commute routes, say Queen Anne to Overlake, could run on Mercer, with stops alongside its extra-wide sidewalks.

Republican Street and Mercer would cater to drivers, deliveries and taxis."
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Old January 31st, 2012, 02:01 AM   #1007
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Originally Posted by Ruffhauser View Post
Article in todays Times about the Mercer Mess.

http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/htm...raffic30m.html

The article fleshes out an issue I am particularly interested in: the reconnection of the street grid above the coming North Portal of the tunnel for SR99.

"Seattle DOT's Kemper offers a bullish vision of the future road grid, when streets that dead-end at Aurora Avenue North are extended east as planned, by 2016, when that part of Aurora is converted into the Highway 99 tunnel:

Thomas Street would remain a calm lane suitable for pedestrians, cyclists and the streetcar.

Harrison Street would carry buses directly from the Space Needle to the middle of office campuses, maybe continuing up to Capitol Hill. Long commute routes, say Queen Anne to Overlake, could run on Mercer, with stops alongside its extra-wide sidewalks.

Republican Street and Mercer would cater to drivers, deliveries and taxis."
For those who may not have seen this, here's the timeline and plan for the Mercer Mess Phase II and the northern tunnel portal construction projects:

http://www.wsdot.wa.gov/projects/via...orthportal.htm
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Old February 3rd, 2012, 07:42 PM   #1008
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Pretty cool series of photos of the progress on the 520 widening project:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/wsdot/s...th/6762117343/

Not to take anything away from Vashon's updates
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Old February 16th, 2012, 07:09 PM   #1009
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Spokane Street Viaduct project: Ramp girders finally arrive

http://westseattleblog.com/2012/02/s...finally-arrive
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Old February 27th, 2012, 06:11 AM   #1010
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Alaskan Way Viaduct (02/18):















Mercer St (02/15):













































Spokane St. Viaduct (02/18):











































































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Old March 29th, 2012, 06:26 AM   #1011
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http://www.seattlepi.com/local/trans...ge-3441908.php

I attended the 520 open house tonight at MOHAI where these renderings of the new bridge were on display. The tall concrete boxes that are being called sentinels are just too tall in my opinion and then add colored lights on them and it's just too much. WSDOT reps at the meeting tried to make it seem like the design is a "done deal" since the Seattle Design Commission reviewed the plans at their February meeting. The reason for my critique is whoever designed these large pylons seems to not realize what amazing sights the lake, mountains and shoreline offer people on the bridge. I suggested that the architectural statements would be way more appropriate very close to or integrated with the lids on each side of the lake. I-90's portals into the Mt. Baker ridge tunnels is a great example of some artistry used to make the highway special without taking away from the great views. Since there are stairwells inside some of the concrete boxes I understand they're needed but they should be just tall enough to avoid people climbing onto the roofs. Civil engineers trying to do architectural design rarely works and this is a classic example. The concrete boxes look like they have mini TransAmerica towers attached to them.

On another topic the railings that are being proposed along the bike/ped path use horizontal rods instead of the vertical pickets. They're even proposing to use wavy horizontal rods for the coolness factor (or maybe needing to spend a little more money?). I-90's path uses vertical pickets. Anyone ever stand on horizontal railing rods like what are shown in the renderings? Yeah, they bend when big people jump on them. I think the new I-90 bridge opened in 1990 and the aluminum railings still look pretty darn good. I suggested vertical pickets would be appropriate even thought I know horizontal rods are nicer for views on a highway.
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Old March 29th, 2012, 07:50 AM   #1012
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I have no problem with the size of the towers at all. I think they'll be a minor annoyance for a few seconds in terms of view obstruction. The design of the towers could use some work though lol. I like that they're illuminated too!

You have a valid point on the horizontal railing bars. Not to mention they're easier to climb.
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Old March 29th, 2012, 08:43 AM   #1013
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It's been interesting watching the construction on 520. Not just the bridge, but also the Bellevue Braids project. It looks like the part connecting to eastbound 520 is almost done.

I have a question about the bridge. So they have pilings for the additional lanes for light rail in the future, but is there space for it under the lids? It's hard to tell from the renderings.
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Old March 29th, 2012, 05:31 PM   #1014
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I really wish they won't do floating bridge again this time because I KNOW that new bridge will be replaced again within 50-60 years from now. Waste of money. They should go ahead with suspension bridge option because it will last much longer, more effective, and save money in long run. I still don't buy that argument that they can't build suspension bridge just because it is too depth to build it. I know they can build it but whatever.
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Old March 29th, 2012, 09:16 PM   #1015
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I really wish they won't do floating bridge again this time because I KNOW that new bridge will be replaced again within 50-60 years from now. Waste of money. They should go ahead with suspension bridge option because it will last much longer, more effective, and save money in long run. I still don't buy that argument that they can't build suspension bridge just because it is too depth to build it. I know they can build it but whatever.
can you imagine the NIMBY outcry from every resident with a view of Lake Washington and the suspension bridge?

Of course if the bridge were there when they moved in they'd love it but to put one up now would ruin their views lol.
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Old March 29th, 2012, 09:22 PM   #1016
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I don't understand this. Portland built a gondola and is building a new bridge. Vancouver has built bridges recently and as far as I know, all these are considered part of the scenic view of the city. What's wrong in Seattle-Bellevue, infested with reluctant exurbanites?
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Old March 29th, 2012, 10:37 PM   #1017
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can you imagine the NIMBY outcry from every resident with a view of Lake Washington and the suspension bridge?

Of course if the bridge were there when they moved in they'd love it but to put one up now would ruin their views lol.
haha seriously. Like I always say, we wouldn't be able to build the Space Needle if we tried to build it today.
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Old March 29th, 2012, 11:40 PM   #1018
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Probably true. It would take views away from the Space Needle! Um, I mean the Pacific Science Center arches!

A suspension bridge would need to be massive to cross Lake Washington. Hard to imagine that happening. And of course precisely zero chance of doing it without several years of debate, study, financing, design, etc.
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Old March 29th, 2012, 11:50 PM   #1019
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can you imagine the NIMBY outcry from every resident with a view of Lake Washington and the suspension bridge?

Of course if the bridge were there when they moved in they'd love it but to put one up now would ruin their views lol.
Tell me about it. I don't give a damn about Montlake residents. All I care about what will do good for both city of Seattle and the rest of Seattle metro area.

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I don't understand this. Portland built a gondola and is building a new bridge. Vancouver has built bridges recently and as far as I know, all these are considered part of the scenic view of the city. What's wrong in Seattle-Bellevue, infested with reluctant exurbanites?
Amen!
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Old March 30th, 2012, 01:05 AM   #1020
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Phase 2 of the I-90 HOV project has concluded -the third and final phase is to begin next year.
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