Next week, the Seattle Department of Transportation will begin a series of lane closures for painting the Fremont Bridge, a project that will last into February. These closures will occur during off-peak travel hours, but heavier traffic should be expected, regardless.
The first stage of the closures, lasting several weeks, will affect just northbound traffic. The northbound curbside lane will close to all vehicles, leaving a single travel lane open, between 6 a.m. and 3 p.m. weekdays, starting Monday, Sept. 2.
The adjacent walkway (on the east side of the bridge) will also close during these hours. All pedestrian and bicycle traffic will share the walkway on the west side of the bridge. Directional signage will be placed to route pedestrians and bicyclists when the lane/walkway closures are in effect.
Northbound vehicles and bicyclists traveling in either direction should allow for additional crossing time due to congestion during this initial phase of the painting project.
The bridge will also open more frequently until painting is completed, as more vessels will require the bridge to open to pass underneath. (The painter’s scaffolding and containment system beneath the bridge reduces the vertical clearance above the surface of the ship canal.) As a result, traffic backups resulting from openings of the bridge will occur more often. Drivers are encouraged to use alternative routes if convenient.
This pattern of traffic restrictions will be in place for several weeks, before one southbound travel lane will also close, but just between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m., since southbound traffic flows are heavy in both morning and evening peak periods.
For more information about the Fremont Bridge Painting Project, visit www.seattle.gov/transportation/bridgepainting_current.htm