Westbound I-90 traffic detoured to express lanes for weekend work April 17-20

Washington State Department of Transportation 

Westbound I-90 traffic detoured to express lanes for weekend work April 17-20

Additional directional closures scheduled for weekends of May 1, May 15

Mariners’ fans who use Interstate 90 to get to Safeco Field will want to plan ahead for next weekend’s homestand or they could be late for King Felix’s court.

Beginning at 11 p.m. Friday, April 17, the crews working for Washington State Department of Transportation and Sound Transit will reroute all westbound lanes of I-90 to the express lanes between Bellevue Way Southeast and Rainier Avenue South until 5 a.m. Monday, April 20. This will allow contractor crews to continue upgrades to the operations and safety systems in the westbound Mount Baker and Mercer Island tunnels.

This is the third of as many as 30 weekend-long directional closures during the next two years as part of the I-90 Two-Way Transit and HOV Operations project. Additional weekend work is scheduled for eastbound May 1–4 and westbound May 15–18 before crews wrap up weekend closures in time for summer.

Closure details

11 p.m. Friday, April 17, until 5 a.m. Monday, April 20

  • Westbound I-90 traffic between Bellevue Way Southeast and Rainier Avenue South is routed to the express lanes from 11 p.m. Friday to 5 a.m. Monday.
  • Mercer Island traffic will need to exit westbound I-90 at East Mercer Way. There are no westbound exits to Mercer Island from the express lanes.
  • Drivers heading to Seattle from Mercer Island should use the 77th Avenue Southeast or Island Crest Way express lane on-ramps.
  • The westbound I-90 exit to Rainier Avenue South will be closed. Drivers will follow the signed detour via Fourth Avenue South and eastbound I-90.
  • Flammable materials will be prohibited on westbound I-90. Drivers must use alternate routes such as Interstate 405 State Route 520 or State Route 522.
  • The I-90 Trail will not be impacted during the closure.

Special events

Seattle Mariners vs. Texas Rangers at Safeco Field

  • 6:10 p.m. Saturday, April 18
  • 1:10 p.m. Sunday, April 19

Snoop Dogg concert at the WaMu Theater

  • 8 p.m. Sunday, April 19

WSDOT needs help from drivers to keep traffic moving 

Thousands of vehicles travel across the I-90 floating bridge on a typical weekend. WSDOT needs drivers’ help to prevent regional gridlock during a weekend closure:

  • Know before you go: check the Seattle traffic website, call 511 for real-time travel information, and plan for delays and added travel time.
  • Allow extra time to travel through the work zone or on alternate routes.
  • Ride transit, carpool or use other alternative modes of transportation.
  • Travel early in the morning or later in the evening, or reschedule discretionary trips.
  • Expect congestion on alternate routes such as I-405, I-5 and SR 520.
  • Key alternate routes for drivers heading to Seattle and the stadiums from the south end include SR 509, SR 599, East Marginal Way South, Airport Way South and Fourth Avenue South.
  • During daytime closures, drivers should expect increased congestion on local streets, especially Rainier Avenue South, Fourth Avenue South and South Dearborn Street in Seattle; and Bellevue Way Southeast in Bellevue.

 Project background

The I-90 closure is the third of up to 30 weekend-long directional closures as part of WSDOT and Sound Transit’s I-90 Two-Way Transit and HOV Operations project, which is adding carpool lanes to both directions of I-90 between Seattle and Bellevue. This collaboration will preserve the number of general-purpose lanes for solo drivers while adding all-day carpool lanes to I-90. Building the new HOV lanes on the outer roadway of I-90 will enable construction of Sound Transit’s 14-mile East Link light rail extension from Seattle to Redmond.

 Hyperlinks within the release: