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Yesler Bridge Rehabilitation Project

Revised: April 20, 2016

Construction starts soon

The Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) will begin construction to rehabilitate the Yesler Way Bridge as soon as May and expect construction to last through fall 2017. Read more below about what to expect during construction or check out the construction fact sheet.

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Expect early utility relocation work to occur in April/May (3/30/2016)
During April and May, SDOT is working with utility companies to relocate utility lines ahead of starting bridge construction. This early utility work will not require any street closures or impact traffic on Yesler Way or 4th Ave.

Bus only lane extension on 5th Ave (3/18/2016)
In conjunction with the Yesler Bridge Rehabilitation Project, SDOT extended the existing 5th Ave transit contraflow lane by two blocks between Terrace and S Washington streets (green arrow on the map). The bus only lane extension was completed in February 2016. SDOT also added new parking spaces along the west side of 5th Ave between Jefferson and Terrace in March 2016.

Seattle City Light Utility Relocation (3/18/2016)
Seattle City Light (SCL) is wrapping up work to underground power lines currently on the underside of the Yesler Way Bridge over 4th Avenue that serves the 400 Yesler Way Building. This work will maintain service to the building during construction of the bridge and improve the area's overall electrical reliability by undergrounding the lines. SCL began work in October 2015. For more information and a map of this work, please visit SCL's project website.


During construction, vehicle and transit detours will be in effect and a number of parking spaces will be removed because of several street closures and channelization changes.

Street and sidewalk closures during construction:

  • Yesler Way will be closed in both directions between 3rd Ave and midway between 5th Ave and 6th Ave
  • Terrace St will be closed to through traffic, open to local access
  • 4th Ave will have ongoing lane closures and occasional full nighttime and weekend closures
  • Sidewalks on either side of 4th Ave will have alternating closures

Vehicle and sidewalk closures:

Vehicle and transit detours during construction:

  • Some transit routes may be affected during construction, including:
    • King County Metro routes: 27, 111, 114, 212, 214, 216, 217, 218, 219, 252, 257, 268, 304, 308, 311, 312, 355
    • Sound Transit routes: 510, 511, 512, 513, 554, 590, 594, 595
    • Community Transit routes: 402, 405, 410, 412, 413, 415, 416, 417, 421, 422, 424, 425, 435
  • Some bus stops will be temporarily relocated
  • Transit agencies will notify their riders as appropriate

Vehicle detour routes:

Transit detour routes:

Parking restrictions during construction:

  • There will be no parking:
    • In the construction area along Yesler Way between 3rd Ave and midway between 5th Ave and 6th Ave
    • Along Terrace St from the alley to Yesler Way
    • Beneath the bridge on 4th Ave
    • In the east curb lane of 5th Ave between Washington and Terrace Streets
    • On the west side of 6th Ave immediately south of Yesler Way
    • On the north side of Main St immediately west of 6th Ave

Parking impacts during construction:

Parking restrictions after construction (permanent):

  • Parking will no longer be allowed on the Yesler Way Bridge due to safety concerns
  • A few parking spaces will be removed on both Yesler Way and Terrace St immediately adjacent the bridge due to safety concerns
  • Parking will no longer be allowed on the east side of 4th Ave between S Washington and Jefferson Streets to improve transit reliability
  • Parking will no longer be allowed in the east curb lane of 5th Ave between S Washington and Terrace St to accommodate the contraflow lane that was installed in February 2016 to improve transit connectivity and travel times


The Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) will be rehabilitating the Yesler Way Bridge, located at the intersection of Yesler Way and Terrace St over 4th Ave S, starting as soon as May 2016 and lasting through fall 2017.

Built in 1910, the bridge is one of the oldest permanent steel roadway bridges in the City of Seattle. SDOT will be rehabilitating the Yesler Way Bridge to improve safety and reliability while preserving the bridge’s historical elements.

The Yesler Way Bridge is vital in connecting residents, commuters, workers and businesses in the surrounding area and neighborhoods. In addition to providing a major east/west arterial connection across I-5, the bridge displays unique and historic design elements which include decorative pedestrian railings, parabolic and circular features of the exterior “fascia” girders, and ornamental capitals and casings on the “fascia” girder columns, all of which will be preserved with the bridge rehabilitation.


Improvements to the bridge include:

  • Remove interior steel columns to form a single span superstructure
  • Rehabilitate east abutment wall and replace west abutment wall
  • Reconstruct the northwest staircase
  • Rehabilitate and preserve the key historic features of the bridge, which include:
    • North and south fascia girders, columns, cladding, capitals and corbels
    • North and south pedestrian railings
    • Decorative lighting on north fascia girder
  • Improve intersection design to reduce crosswalk distance, accommodate ADA and increase user safety
  • Provide curb ramps that meet Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) standards to the maximum extent feasible at crosswalk locations within the project limits





Bridge design is complete. Construction will begin in spring 2016 and will last for approximately 14 to 16 months.

October 2014: 60% Design
April 2015: 90% Design
September 2015: Final Design
Spring 2016: Begin Construction
Fall 2017: Project Complete


SDOT is committed to engaging with the community and understanding their needs in the project area. We will continue sharing information with you leading up to and throughout construction.

Project Materials

Translated Materials


Yesler Way Bridge Over 4th Ave S under construction in 1910

Yesler Way Bridge Over 4th Ave S (1920)

Existing Yesler Way Bridge

Historic features on the Yesler Way Bridge


The project budget is approximately $19.8 million. Funding comes from the Bridging the Gap (BTG) transportation levy passed by voters in November 2006 and a grant from the Federal Highway Bridge Program.


If you have questions or comments about the Yesler Bridge Rehabilitation Project, please contact us at: or 206-684-8684.

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To request translation services or accommodation for persons with disabilities, please call 206-684-8684/TTY Relay: 711.

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