SDOT to repair West Emerson Overpass

Major traffic impacts start October 9

The Seattle Department of Transportation will begin critical repair work on the West Emerson Overpass above 15th Avenue West on Thursday, Oct. 9. The overpass will be completely closed to all traffic for approximately 12 weeks.

Initial work includes the removal and replacement of a damaged girder on the north side of the West Emerson Overpass. To complete this work safely, SDOT will also close 15th Avenue West to all traffic at night, between West Emerson and West Dravus streets, on the weekend of Oct. 10 – 12.

Long term detours beginning Oct. 9:

  • Westbound to Magnolia: Travelers will have a signed detour route to Northwest Leary Way and back via the Ballard Bridge.

An alternate route (not suitable for freight movements) exists via the one-way Nickerson-15th Avenue West ramp to southbound 15th Avenue West to cross Interbay using West Dravus Street and reconnect with West Emerson Street via 20th Avenue West and Gilman Avenue West.

  • Eastbound to Fremont: Travelers will have a signed detour route to West Emerson Street. Traffic will be detoured to West Dravus Street and back using 15th Avenue West.

An alternate eastbound route (not suitable for freight movements) exists via Gilman Avenue West and 20th Avenue West to cross Interbay at West Dravus Street, then reconnect with West Nickerson Street via northbound 15th Avenue West.

  • Pedestrian and bicycle traffic between West Emerson and West Nickerson streets will need to use  the Ship Canal Trail to cross under 15th Avenue West. The stairways just south of the West Emerson Overpass will be closed; all other stairways will remain open.
  • Some residential parking restrictions along the detour routes will be in place to provide King County Metro buses adequate turning room.

Short term detours beginning October 9th:

Mid-day lane closures beginning Oct. 9 are needed to temporarily remove the traffic island between the north and southbound lanes of 15th Avenue West so that detour traffic may be accommodated during the weekend night-time closures.

As of Friday, Oct. 10, through Sunday, Oct. 12, 15th Avenue West will be closed between West Dravus and West Emerson streets. Closures will begin at 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday nights and reopen by 9 a.m. the following mornings. On Sunday, Oct. 12, 15th Avenue West will close at 7 p.m. and reopen in time for the morning commute on Monday, Oct. 13th, by 6 a.m. The westbound Nickerson – 15th Avenue West ramp will also be closed at these times.

  • Both north- and southbound traffic on 15th Avenue West will have a signed detour route between West Dravus and West Emerson streets that uses 20th Avenue West and Gilman Avenue West.
  • Westbound traffic on West Nickerson Street must use the Ballard Bridge detour route to Northwest Leary Way and back to reach West Emerson Street; the alternate route described above will not be available these nights.
  • On-street parking will be restricted on 14th Avenue West between West Dravus and West Emerson streets from Friday evening through Monday morning to accommodate King County Metro bus routes during the nighttime closures of 15th Avenue West.

The demolition work during Friday night, Oct. 10, will be unavoidably loud. Crews will be active throughout the night, operating heavy machinery to demolish the northern edge of the overpass.  Residents in the area should expect loud noises and lights for most of the night.

For more information on this project, including maps of signed and alternate detour routes, visit www.seattle.gov/transportation/15thAveWestOverpass.htm. Email updates on the project can be requested at 15thAveWestOverpass@seattle.gov.

For information about bus service, look for Rider Alert notices at bus stops, see Metro Online, www.kingcounty.gov/metro, or call  206.553.3000.

Links included in this post:

  • Project website: http://www.seattle.gov/transportation/15thAveWestOverpass.htm
  • Detour maps for West Emerson Overpass closure
    • Overview map: Emerson_Overpass_Detour.pdf
    • Bicycle and pedestrian detours: Bike_Ped_Detour.pdf
    • Westbound detour: Westbound_Detour.pdf
    • Eastbound detour: Eastbound_Detour.pdf
    • Westbound alternate route: Westbound_Alternate.pdf
    • Eastbound alternate route: Eastbound_Alternate.pdf
    • Detour map for nighttime 15th Avenue W closures: 15thAve_Detour.pdf