Monday, May 9, 2022

Rain washes out Revive I-5 weekend, but plenty more coming

UPDATE 7:37 a.m. Friday, May 13: Rain in the forecast means we have to postpone this work once again. Fingers crossed for dry weather soon. We will get word out when we know the next scheduled weekend of work.

By Tom Pearce

We didn’t get to Revive I-5 southbound near Spokane Street last weekend because of the rainy weather, but we’ll be back this weekend hoping for better conditions.

We’re planning to replace several joints near Spokane Street starting at about 7:30 p.m. Friday night, May 13. We’ve also adjusted our traffic plan a bit – the mainline of southbound I-5 will remain open, but we’ll begin to reduce the number of lanes south of I-90, eventually narrowing to a single lane.

Replacing expansion joints required a lot of work, including cutting old concrete.

Once the lanes are closed our contractor, C.A. Carey, will replace the left side of the expansion joints near Spokane Street. Southbound I-5 in this area will be down to a single lane all day Saturday, May 14, and Sunday, May 15, before all lanes reopen by 5 a.m. Monday, May 16.

Work planned almost every weekend this summer

We still need about 16 weekends to replace 35 expansion joints on I-5, in addition to 10 others on the ramps that connect to the freeway. We can replace several joints on either the right lanes or left lanes in the same weekend, but the sheer number requires a lot of weekends that will stretch into early fall.

The left lanes will be closed all weekend south of I-90 to the Spokane Street area.

We plan to work every weekend except Memorial Day, UW graduation June 11-12, Juneteenth June 18-19, Independence Day and Labor Day. We originally planned to work the weekend of June 18-19, but with I-405 closing for that weekend in Bellevue to remove the old Main Street overpass, we need to keep all lanes of I-5 open.

As we saw last weekend, this work is weather-dependent. We use a polyester concrete to hold the joints in place. This is more durable that regular concrete, but it needs dry conditions to cure properly.

You can still get there

Reducing lanes on I-5 is never enjoyable, but you can still get to your spring and summer fun. It may take some extra time, but if you plan ahead you can still get to everything from games to family events:

  • Allow plenty of travel time.
  • Use alternative routes like I-405 or SR 99 (remember the toll)
  • Consider light rail or buses
  • Travel early (before 8 a.m.) or late (after 8 p.m.)

We appreciate your patience as we continue our work to Revive I-5. After nearly 60 years, our region’s main freeway has earned it.