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I-5 detour for Triangle project starts Tuesday

Post by Stacia Glenn / The News Tribune on May 29, 2011 at 4:59 pm with 2 Comments »
May 29, 2011 4:59 pm

Commuters who take Interstate 5 through Federal Way can expect delays as a summer-long project gets underway Tuesday.

The ramp from Weyerhaeuser Way to westbound state Route 18 will close Tuesday for about three months as crews prepare for one of two new flyover ramps as part of the $112 million Triangle project.

Drivers will follow a four-mile detour from eastbound Route 18 to the West Valley Highway and back to westbound Route 18.

About 4,300 people drive through that area daily, according to the state Department of Transportation.

While the ramp is closed, WSDOT crews will rebuild and elevate the ramp 20 feet to make room for a flyover ramp that will connect westbound SR 18 to southbound I-5.

The Triangle is named for the intersection of I-5, Route 18 and Route 161, also called Enchanted Parkway South, which is one of the most dangerous chokepoints in South King County.

A second flyover ramp will also be added from eastbound Route 18 to northbound I-5 in an attempt to ease congestion and stop the weaving drivers must do to navigate the interchange.

The project is slated to wrap up in late 2012.

But first, drivers must endure three ramp closures this summer.

The next one is scheduled for August, when the ramp from westbound Route 18 to northbound I-5 will shut down so crews can connect it to the rebuilt Weyerhaeuser Way ramp.

The last closure will take place from July 15-18 when crews will connect sections of the new flyover ramp to Route 18 and I-5. The ramp from eastbound Route 18 to southbound I-5 will be closed during that time.

Crews will begin installing large steel bridge girders over I-5 and Route 18 in the fall, which will mean nighttime closures.

Leave a comment Comments → 2
  1. sunlover says:

    17,200 extra miles daily for detouring 4300 vehicles because they need to close a main ramp to Hwy 18 and I5. Again WSDOT shows their smarts. They could have made some lane striping changes and not have to close this ramp. What a dumb and costly detour to those of us who have to use this ramp.

    17,200 extra miles / 25 mpg = 688 gallons of wasted gas x $3.73 per gallon = $2566 taxpayers dollars down the drain. They must have needed more gas taxes for another project to do this!!

    What a brainy idea WSDOT which = Wanton Stupidity Delivering Olympia’s Taxes

  2. Hate having my daily routine changed, but it is REALLY GREAT to see the death trap that is the I-5/Hwy 18 intersection fixed. And while it now takes me 6 minutes to get on I-5 southbound instead of 3 that it normally takes, it is nice to have four detour options. I’ll keep my tires inflated properly and not drive aggressively so that I don’t waste any gas. Thanks WSDOT and your private contractors. You are making a disrupting situation very manageable.

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