Why are there bumps along I-5 in downtown Seattle (and when they’ll go away)

When Dave Ross from KIRO Radio asks you to update something for him, you do.

Discussing traffic on Seattle’s Morning News Monday morning, Dave asked me about those annoying bumps on I-5 heading south from downtown Seattle. They showed up after a new causeway was installed between downtown Seattle and the West Seattle Bridge, and they were supposed to be taken care of during recent lane closures.

Here is the last one:

Expansion joint replacement work that is part of the Revive I-5 project has so far replaced only six of 40 joints. That left 34 bumps in the road that the state will get until the next construction season. But don’t worry: you won’t have to deal with those big bumps until next year. The contractor has worked nights to smooth them out and this work will be completed soon.

“They’re carving these little ramps out of the concrete at the expansion joint,” said Tom Pearce of the Washington State Department of Transportation. “It’s a four-on-one ramp. The average drop is about an inch. They dig about four inches on each side of the sidewalk. It won’t eliminate the bump, but it will reduce it. “

These smoothed out bumps will stay until the gaskets are replaced next year. Pearce rode some of the smoothed out bumps recently, and he said they were a lot better.

So why did WSDOT first paved and replaced the expansion joints first?

“It’s a more efficient process to repave and then replace expansion joints, because it’s just easier to match the height of the expansion joint to the pavement, rather than matching the pavement to the height of the expansion joint.” dilation, ”Pearce said.

This is our bump update.

Why are portions of I-90 near Snoqualmie Pass so “groovy”?

This weekend, WSDOT is set to begin serious work to add 1,500 feet of new road to I-5 northbound. This is something that I have been talking about for several years.

WSDOT will convert the Seneca Street exit ramp only to a through lane so northbound drivers can exit at Seneca if they wish, or continue straight on I-5 if they wish. This lane will eventually connect to the University ramp, 1,500 feet to I-5.

Pearce said the contractor plans to close the northbound I-5 manifold-distributor lanes overnight Saturday and Sunday to begin creating a work zone.

“We need to move a barrier on I-5 northbound in the Seneca area,” he said. “What this is going to do is provide us with a little more space so that we can come back and redraw I-5 northbound in that area so that there are actually three lanes of passage.”

This job is weather dependent and the forecast is a bit uncertain. If construction progresses, it will be difficult to get down to downtown Seattle.

“This will mean that the I-90 ramps to I-5 northbound will be closed,” Pearce said. “The Dearborn slip road is also going to be closed. The northbound exit ramps to James Street and Madison Street will also be closed. “

But you can still go east on I-90. Lanes C / D will close after this ramp.

This new 1,500 feet of I-5 northbound is expected to be completed by next fall. The two tracks C / D to I-5 will also be measured at the same time. There will also be a new ramp meter at the Cherry Street slip road to I-5 northbound.

Check out more of Chris’s Chokepoints.