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Seattle weekend traffic and transit: Southbound SR 99 is totally closed

What’s blocking up traffic this weekend and how to ride transit to it (or around it)


Another weekend, another whole list of things that could disrupt getting around. Some of these events might be things you’re doing, too: There’s a pretty light show at MOHAI and a couple of run/walks. Plus: State Route 99 is totally closed southbound!

We’ve combed through the alerts and advisories from both the Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) and the Washington Department of Transportation (WSDOT) to deliver transit-friendly solutions for your weekend outings.

Some of this weekend’s advisories—and transit-oriented alternate routes to events—are listed below.

Weekend events: Concerts, walks, and runs

Thursday through Sunday, the Museum of History and Industry is launching it’s first annual Borealis Festival of Light—a light show on the side of MOHAI coinciding with art installations in South Lake Union, music, food, and beer. It gets started at 5 p.m. each night; take the South Lake Union Streetcar, the 40, or the C Line.

Saturday, the Puget Sound Heart and Stroke Walk raises money for the American Heart Association and closes Fourth Avenue between University and Denny from 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. Festivities start and end at Seattle Center—so many buses go there, including the 1, 2, 3, 4, 8, 13, 32, and D Line.

Also Saturday, monthly market Sodo Flea returns from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. along Utah Avenue S between Holgate and Stacy. Metro route 21 will get you right there, or walk a few blocks from the Link Light Rail Sodo station.

The Women Build Nations conference is going on all weekend at Seattle Center, with a Banner Parade on Saturday between the Convention Center and Westlake Park. Pretty much any bus that goes downtown will get you at least close to either location.

Saturday night, Snails is playing at Wamu Theater. Link Light Rail goes there (take the stadium or ID stop) or one of a myriad bus routes.

Sunday, the UW Dawg Dash supports student scholarships and runs on campus roads. It starts around 9 a.m. on the UW campus by the quad. The 31, 32, 67, 75, and 271 are your best bets.

Sports: Mariners, Sounders, and Huskies

The Seahwaks are in London (not Oakland as we originally assumed), the Sounders don’t play until Wednesday, and the Huskies are in Eugene.

Road work and bus service changes

Revive I-5 is almost over! But not until lane reductions this weekend: 8 p.m. Friday through 5 a.m. Monday, northbound I-5 will be reduced to two lanes between MLK and Olive. That closes a bunch of ramps in the process: the Airport offramp, the Boeing Access Road onramp, the Michigan Street onramp, the West Seattle Bridge/Spokane/Columbian offramp, the Columbia Way onramp, the Seneca Street offramp, the University Street onramp, and the Olive Way offramp. Have fun!

As I-5 shrinks northbound, State Route 99 is closing entirely southbound; from 9 p.m. Friday through 5 a.m. Monday, southbound 99 will completely close between the Battery Street Tunnel and Spokane Street so WSDOT can work on some paving in advance of the tunnel opening.

Speaking of the tunnel opening: Alaskan Way will close 8 p.m. Saturday through 10 a.m. Sunday between Railroad and Wall so WSDOT can finish striping for a new lane alignment along the waterfront in preparation for the switchover.

If you thought I-90 was immune, you’ think wrong, although it’s not quite as dire: Rainier Avenue South is closing at I-90 for East Link Extension work.

Also: On Saturday, Second Avenue will be go down to one lane between Pike and Pine so a crane can do its thing.

Those above events are rerouting some buses:

Since the Heart Walk runs through major downtown thoroughfares, it’s rerouting a wide swath of buses on Saturday morning: the 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 10, 11, 13, 21, 24, 26, 28, 33, 40, 47, 49, 62, 70, 131, 132, C Line, D Line, and E Line. Whew!

The Dawg Dash is rerouting most buses that go to campus: the 32, 43, 44, 48, 49, 65, 67, 70, 75, 271, and 372.

Some construction-related bus reroutes:

  • That East Link construction on Rainier is rerouting the 7 and 106 from Friday night through Monday morning, skipping a few stops.
  • The Viaduct closure reroutes the southbound 120, 125, and C Line from Friday night through Monday morning—while it might make things take longer, no stops are being missed.
  • Starting Thursday and going through next month, the northbound 28 is getting rerouted off Greenwood around 145th, missing a couple of stops.
  • A bunch of construction on Nickerson near Interbay is rerouting the 29, 31, 32. at various points throughout the weekend.

Note: We put immediate and new closures in this section, but not every single planned street closure appears here. Explore all 93 active SDOT projects, many of which involve street and lane closures, here, and the city’s construction lookahead. Here are Sound Transit rider alerts; here are King County Metro rider alerts.