Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Tonight SR520 Meeting Update Focusing On The West Approach Bridge

Tonight from 5:30-6:30pm, at the Graham Visitor Center inside the Arboretum, WSDOT is holding its monthly meeting focusing on WABN (West Approach Bridge North) construction updates. The Rest of the West / Montlake Phase team won't attending or presenting at this meeting.

Citizens are invited to drop in to meet with WABN engineers and hear about what is coming up in 2017 for the West Approach Bridge North.
The Laurelhurst Community Club (LCC) said:

This meeting will be about the West Approach Bridge North and give an update about its nearing the bridge deck girder completion of the installation.
One of the good things is that the work bridge extension to the north will be removed as the new WABN will support soon its own construction techniques and processes from now until completion. 
The negative is that the pilings that support the work bridge will create noise and vibration along the shoreline as they are removed. 
And, at last, the old SR520 pontoons are being floated away after having been stored in Union Bay for over 7 months.  This has been a safety concern  for nearby residents before more windy storms occur.

SR520 Project updates
The WABN structure
No need for a gym. Only one week into the new year and WABN is already making big changes in its physique. Just last week, on Thursday Jan. 5, crews installed the 353rd girder – marking the completion of all girder installation for the final WABN structure!  
With this final girder in place and more than 50 percent of the roadway deck placed, WABN can begin shedding its temporary work bridge. In the past few months, crews have been pulling back the extension piers of the temporary bridge, but now crews will begin the process of removing the main spine (wooden bridge pictured bottom right).
Trestle Photo
The temporary work bridge was the first stage in the construction process of the new WABN structure. For the past two years, the temporary bridge supported the work of hundreds of construction crew members, vehicles and equipment. Now, in its final year, WABN can support itself and in the coming months will begin to stand as a lone structure connecting the new floating bridge to Montlake.
What this means for neighbors:
  • No more nighttime deliveries, installations, or flagging on Lake Washington Boulevard for girders. However, there may still be nighttime deliveries for concrete pours to finish up the last 41% of deck placement. 
  • Crews will begin removal of the temporary work bridge on the eastern edge near the floating bridge and work their way west. 
  • All temporary work bridge removal work is currently scheduled to take place during daytime work hours.
  • Vibrations may be felt at nearby homes as the steel piles of the temporary work bridge are removed from the lake.


Pontoons being towed by tugboats on Lake Washington
Floating bridge
If you have not yet had the chance, check out the history in motion on Lake Washington. Only three of 31 old floating bridge pontoons are still floating near their old residence, and later this week, each of these 53-year-old pontoons will be escorted from Lake Washington via the Lake Washington Ship Canal before passing through the Hiram M. Chittenden (Ballard) Locks. Once through the locks, the pontoons are turned over to a third-party wholesaler for reuse.
Over the next few days, the following old floating bridge pontoons will take their final voyage:
  • Pontoon Z is planned to depart at 2 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 11.
  • Pontoon B is planned to depart at 2 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 12.
  • Pontoon N (with the lift-span) is planned to depart Saturday, Jan. 14.
If you are interested in seeing the final float-outs, you can track the accompanying tugboats Terilyn and Mudcat using a boat-tracker app or website such as MarineTraffic, and watch the float-outs from these suggested viewing locations
Departure timings and tugboats are subject to change; please follow the SR 520 Twitter account for the most up-to-date float-out information.

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