Do you have a travel plan and your #GoodToGo toll pass?
Tolling the SR 99 tunnel is part of the third chapter of the #SeattleSqueeze, the period through 2024 where Seattle’s downtown is in a state of transition to meet the needs of our growing city. We need everyone’s help to keep people moving to and through downtown Seattle.
How you get around Seattle is changing again.
Tolls will result in changing downtown Seattle traffic patterns yet again. When tolling first begins, we expect a percentage of drivers will experiment with different ways to get downtown. This means they might choose to use I-5, Alaskan Way, or local streets.
We also expect many of those drivers will gradually return to the tunnel, as the tunnel remains the fastest way to get through downtown Seattle. Tunnel tolls vary with the time-of-day and range from $1 to $2.25 with a Good To Go! pass. In the end, drivers will weigh the cost of a toll vs. the time they save using the tunnel.
Here’s some of what we are doing to help make this transition as smooth as possible for the traveling public:
- During the first week after tolling starts, we’re placing uniform police officers at nine key locations, many of which will be around red bus lanes where extra help may be needed for box blockers.
- We installed digital messaging signs at key locations to remind people of tolling and travel impacts.
- We’ve activated our emergency response team to support travel impacts caused by tolling. Be sure to follow @SDOTtraffic on Twitter for real-time traffic reports and advisories around the clock.
Get ready. Here are 3 ways you can prepare right now.
Get your Good to Go! toll pass
How many of you have said you’d get your Good To Go! toll passes and haven’t yet? (We’re not gonna name naaames 😇 or anything.) You should do it right-now. They’re a cheaper and easier way to travel through the tunnel. With Good To Go!, tolls are $1 – $2.25.
2. Change Your Commute + #FlipYourTrip.
#FlipYourTrip by commuting car-free just once a week to do something good for yourself, your city, and your planet. Try a new mode of transportation such as walking, biking, or taking the bus or light rail. Avoid driving alone if possible.
3. Know Before You Go. Plan ahead and expect more traffic on downtown streets.
Everyone needs to have a plan before traveling to and through downtown. Luckily, we’ve got tools for that. See dotMaps, our project coordination tool that shows construction projects and events happening in your area. Watch this video to see how it works:
The #SeattleSqueeze is far from over. Even after tolling begins in the SR 99 tunnel, how you get around Seattle will continue to change.
Here’s what’s also happening:
🚧 Sounders MLS CUP traffic impacts.
On Sunday, November 10 our beloved Sounders will play in a championship at noon at CenturyLink Field, drawing in a crowd of 70,000. Plan ahead and visit here for transit options to and from the game.
🚧 SR 520 weekend closures.
On November 8-11 SR 520 will close to prepare for a shift in eastbound traffic onto the existing westbound bridge. The SR 520 Bridge Replacement and HOV Project is reconstructing SR 520 in phases, primarily working from east to west. Beginning on Monday, November 11, SR 520 will be reduced from six lanes to four between Montlake and the floating bridge. You can find the latest that is happening with this project by visiting the SR 520 Construction Corner.
🚧 Ongoing impacts related to the Alaskan Way Viaduct Replacement Project.
Pedestrian and lane closures will continue around the North Portal of the SR 99 tunnel as WSDOT completes projects on John, Thomas and Harrison streets, connecting the Uptown and South Lake Unions neighborhoods. Expect lane closures on Battery Street soon as efforts continue to decommission the Battery Street Tunnel.
🚧 Construction of the new Alaskan Way on the Waterfront started this week.
We’re reconnecting our downtown with our waterfront – and building 20 acres of public spaces for all who call Seattle home. This is the start of an exciting new phase for our waterfront and brings us one step closer to new parks, paths , and east-west connections.
🚧 Bus service added to help you get into downtown.
There’s also more bus service added to help you get into downtown. Over 50,000 service hours were added on September 21 through Metro and the Seattle Transportation Benefit District.
🚧 Fairview Avenue Bridge closure.
The Fairview Avenue Bridge closure which started September 23 and will last for up to 18 months while crews rebuild the aging, wooden structure.
🚧 Link light rail service reductions in early 2020.
Connect 2020 is a 10-week period of major light rail service reductions beginning January 4, 2020. During this time, Sound Transit will connect the tracks of the Blue Line to the East Side (opening in 2023) into the Downtown Seattle Transit Tunnel and the International District/Chinatown Station.