BELLEVUE — A major construction project on Interstate 90 squeezed thousands of cars down to just one lane and backed traffic up for miles as drivers made their way to Seattle from the east side of Lake Washington Monday morning.
The Department of Transportation said expansion joint replacement construction had to be done as metal joints that help the bridge bend and flex were beyond repair after 33 years of constant use.
During the replacement of those expansion joints, 85,000 cars that drive over I-90 every day were funneled into one lane as vehicles crossed the I-90 bridge westbound into Seattle.
By 6:30 a.m. WSDOT said the backups were over two miles long and growing.
WSDOT spokesperson, Travis Phelps said, “We’re going to see backups there’s no way around that. It’s just how do we manage those so they don’t become colossal. That’s what we’re looking for here. People have things to do. Lives don’t go on hold because we have roadway work.”
The construction will last through most of the work week and WSDOT hopes to have all westbound lanes back open Friday morning.