Time is running out for commuters to prepare for viaduct closure


For drivers, time is running out to plan for the permanent closure of Seattle's Alaskan Way Viaduct. For work crews, it'll be a three-week process of connecting State Route 99 to a brand-new tunnel.

Already, the Highway 99 ramps in the stadium zone are shut down.

Traffic is already bad in the Seattle region. Many people believe when the viaduct closes for good, it’s only going to make traffic even messier--especially for people who live in West Seattle.

“Maxcon --Period of Maximum Constraint.”


“Seattle Squeeze.”


Whatever you call it, there’s no doubt that it will be a tough time to get around the city when the viaduct shuts down for good.

Ruby Aliment is an attorney who lives in West Seattle and works Downtown.

“Right now I take the “C” (bus) or the 55 and it takes me 30 minutes, said Aliment.

Different people have different strategies to get by in the next three weeks.

“I think we’re going to pick a coffee shop in the West Junction and work from coffeeshop and make for a West Seattle office,” said Daniel Ericson, who typically drives to work in Downtown every day.

“I haven’t quite figured it out. I'm going to see how long it takes the bus, or take the water taxi,” said Aliment.

“I work for the City, for I.T. department. We are actually going to work from home for 3 days and then come in 3 days,” said Sarah McCaghren, who rides the bus to work.

“I actually live in West Seattle and work in Bellevue. I’m trying to figure it out,” said Joel Thornton, who drives. “Work is very flexible. So, I'm going to be able to flex.”

Whatever happens, just know that there are options.

King County Metro will be adding more bus routes.

The West Seattle water taxi will offer more trips across Elliott Bay.

The taxi is a 10-minute ride from Seacrest Park in West Seattle to Downtown.

“We’ll see what happens,” said Aliment.

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