SEATTLE -- Monday morning’s commute is expected to be a nightmare especially for those coming into downtown Seattle. SDOT says they’ll have extra buses and water taxis that people can use if they want to try and avoid the heavy traffic.
“Anything that gets you out of your single-occupant vehicle coming downtown is a good choice," said Heather Marx with SDOT.
Monday morning’s commute is expected to take much longer than usual now that the Alaskan Way Viaduct is closed for good.
“Be careful. Be ready for unexpected changes and detours. We have this planned down to the minute but communicating about that is really going to happen through those detour signs. So please pay attention to that,” Marx said.
Transportation officials say people should make adjustments to how they get around town for the entire three-week closure period. The fewer vehicles on the road, the better it is for everyone.
“We need to be diligent into the 2nd and 3rd week. We can’t have people falling back into their old habits because they feel that things are fine,” said David Sowers, Administrator for the Viaduct Replacement Program.
Since the viaduct closed late Friday night, people have continued to walk on it, but officials say it’s now a construction zone and it isn’t safe.
“We’re asking folks not to try to get up there and take one last view of the sunset. It’s not a place that we want people to be. That opportunity will exist on February 2nd when we’ll open the structure up and the tunnel for people to enjoy one last time,” Sowers said.
Sowers says security is set up at each entry point of the viaduct and police will be called if people are caught trespassing. For those looking to keep a small piece of the viaduct for themselves, he says they’ll be allowed to do so at the grand opening February 2nd.
In the meantime, they’re advising commuters to remain patient, understanding and calm during the longest road closure Puget Sound has ever seen.