Weekend detours coming for I-90 drivers heading across Lake Washington

Washington State Deparment of Transportation and Sound Transit                                                                                                           

Project to add HOV lanes, ready I-90 for light rail kicks off construction

This weekend, contractor crews working for the Washington State Department of Transportation and Sound Transit will begin work on the final stage of a project to add carpool lanes to the outer roadways of Interstate 90 between Bellevue and Seattle. The work also sets the stage for light rail service across I-90.

During the weekend long closure contractor crews from IMCO General Construction will detour eastbound I-90 traffic into the express lanes while they upgrade operations systems in the eastbound Mount Baker and Mercer Island tunnels. This is the first of up to 30 weekend directional closures of I-90 over the next 28 months. Traffic will be detoured to the I-90 express lanes during the directional closures.

Closure details:

Friday, Feb. 27 – Monday, March 2

  • Contractor crews will shift all eastbound I-90 traffic to the express lanes and close the ramp from Rainier Avenue South to eastbound I-90 from 11 p.m. Friday to 5 a.m. Monday.
  • Drivers wishing to access eastbound I-90 from Rainier Avenue South should follow the signed detour via South Dearborn Street and Fourth Avenue South.
  • The exit from eastbound I-90 to Rainier Avenue South will remain open.
  • Those traveling to Mercer Island should exit the express lanes at 77th Avenue Southeast or Island Crest Way.

These closures are part of the I-90 Two-Way Transit and HOV Operations project which preserves the three general purpose lanes while adding all-day carpool lanes to I-90 and direct access ramps for transit, carpools, and vanpools. In mid-2017, Sound Transit contractors will begin work on the I-90 express lanes to operate exclusively for light rail as part of the East Link light rail project. The 14-mile East Link project, set to open in 2023, includes 10 new stations connecting Seattle, Mercer Island, Bellevue and Overlake.