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The Known, the Unknown, and Good Questions

Road Closures. To build a new rail tunnel and a new station in the CID/PSQ area, roads will need to be closed. But which ones, and for how long? Where will the traffic go? How will I get to work, or bars, or home?

What we do know from the DEIS is mapped on our map tool, linked on our Advocacy web page

You can read about road closures in the DEIS, Chapter 2. (Link goes to a table of road closures), but we think more people prefer to see the information on a map, so our consultants made you one. If you do better hearing this explained, check out this section of the last Community Advisory Group meeting (video link).

[photo above taken in 1964, Alaskan Way Viaduct Rail Repairs. Courtesy of Seattle Municipal Archives, item 192394, photographer Dale A. Brenden]

This is the map for the 4th Ave Shallow alternative (CID-1a). Sound Transit included it in the presentation made to the Community Advisory Committee this month.

Remember that 4th Avenue has more traffic than 5th, which is likely why most of the closures are partial (i.e. will not close all lanes). 

The green highlighted streets show some assumptions about where people may choose to drive – you can assume that some people will follow their own diversions, rather than official detour routes. No one can control all traffic.

However, we are assured that construction traffic (large trucks and equipment) will be required to follow specific detours when working. If this equipment has the potential to cause damage, communities can request that they do things to make it better – monitor vibrations in a basement, for example, fix an areaway before traffic is sent down a street, provide some better pedestrian crossings. If you want to read more, check out appendix N.

In the DEIS, Sound Transit agrees to working out a plan for how to detour traffic and direct construction traffic. We are asking them to have transparent discussions with SDOT and WashDOT about what this process looks like, as we think our communities want to know.
This is the same map, but for the 5th Ave shallow alternative (CID-2a).
Again you can see the street closures, as well as some guesses as to where diverted traffic will go (green highlighted streets). 

5th Avenue ideas (remember there are three -- shallow, deep, and diagonal) have a smaller area of closure, but it is concentrated in a segment of the Chinatown International District. For the other options, look at the Sound Transit presentationFewer traffic impacts comes with more property and business impacts. 

Our map tool shows both street and traffic impacts AND which parcels will be affected by the project. We will talk about property impacts in next week's newsletter.
WSBLE Advocacy
Each different station idea has impacts to our neighborhoods, and we have until April 28th, 2022 to comment on these impacts. Every comment counts!
HSD is here to help. Please check out our website to find great resources. Share this email. Follow us on social media. Send us questions. 
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NO final decisions about where the tunnel and station will be located have been made yet. Your comments count.

We'll be sending weekly emails throughout the comment period.
Historic South Downtown is a state-created agency that exists to mitigate the impact of large, public projects on the two historic neighborhoods of south downtown Seattle. Our work is exclusively focused on Pioneer Square and Chinatown-International District. For more information on our work, visit our website at
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