The Day After: Viaduct closure packs I-5 with more drivers

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SEATTLE, Wash. - - It’s been nearly 24 hours since the Alaskan Way Viaduct closed for good. Today work crews began the process of connecting exit ramps to the new 99 Tunnel.

The closing of Seattle’s Alaskan Way Viaduct turned into a celebration last night. Many people wanted to get one last look at the view. Peco’s Pit in West Seattle says the viaduct closing sent a steady stream of customers their way Friday.

“We’re sad that it’s gone but we’ve had a lot more business since it closed. We’re doing good, we’re sad it’s gone but we’re here,” said Jaymes Thompson, Manager for Peco's Pit West Seattle.

Thompson says over the next few weeks, he thinks more people may stop by because of heavier traffic in the West Seattle area. But others we spoke to say, they’re a little nervous about what to expect on Monday.

“I think we’re definitely going to try and take the bus more because driving is just not worth it,” said Kilee Jones, who lives in Queen Anne.

Just a day after the Viaduct permanently closed, some cars were stuck in traffic on Interstate 5 especially as people headed downtown.

“We took a couple of Ubers and it wasn’t actually that bad, maybe just a couple of minutes more. The bikes are always fun in Seattle. But I think we’re going to start using the bikes a lot more, other than cars,” said Samuel Sommer.

The new 99 tunnel is expected to open in about three weeks and in the meantime, drivers will have to buckle down and leave a little earlier, find alternative routes or use public transportation to try and avoid what some are calling the Viadoom.

Monday's commute is expected to be extremely long so people are being advised to just be patient with each other until the tunnel is opened.

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