West Sammamish River Bridge Replacement Project

Overview

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The West Sammamish River Bridge was constructed in the 1930s and is nearing the end of its engineered life. To ensure the long-term safety of our community, the City of Kenmore is replacing this structure.

This project will replace the existing southbound bridge across the Sammamish River and include the construction of new sidewalk and bike facilities on the west side of the road between NE 170th St and NE 175th St. The West Sammamish River Bridge Replacement Project will also include new signals at NE 170th St and NE 175th St, new streetlighting, utility undergrounding and new landscaping.

Construction started in March 2020 and will be completed in late 2022.

Visualization of the new West Sammamish River Bridge looking north.

Project map

Map of the West Sammamish River Bridge Replacement Project construction area

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West Sammamish Bridge construction updates

Construction alerts

Current construction activity:

  • Construction continues under the category of “construction of critical or strategic infrastructure” in Governor Inslee’s proclamation.

  • In response to the COVID-19 impacts on our community, City Hall remains closed to comply with the Public Health – Seattle & King County recommendations and the “Stay Home, Stay Healthy” order from the Governor’s office.

  • The Covid-19 pandemic has caused delays to the project, forcing the City to find creative solutions to complete the project within environmental permit regulations. As a result, City Council approved changing traffic to 1-lane in each direction to allow for demolition of the entire west bridge starting in January, 2021. This traffic configuration will last for 10 months, but will keep the project on schedule and within budget. For more information, please read our recent update.
  • The speed limit has been reduced to 25 MPH throughout the work zone for the safety of the public and construction team. 

    • This speed limit applies 24/7 in both directions.
    • If you see vehicles speeding through the work zone, please contact the City of Kenmore Police Department’s non-emergency phone line at 206-296-3311.
    • Additional speed limit signage has been posted.
    • Enforcement of the speed limit by the Kenmore Police Department will follow.
  • Traffic safety: 
    • Please drive safely and be aware of bicyclists sharing the roadway and construction crews nearby.
    • If you are using your bicycle to cross the bridge and do not feel comfortable sharing the roadway, please dismount and walk your bicycle across the bridge on the sidewalk.
    • Pedestrian traffic has been shifted exclusively to the sidewalk on the east bridge.
  • The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife manages the Kenmore Boat Launch.

    • Construction may limit parking at the boat launch. Please be prepared for crowds, possible waits, and general changes to what you may be used to.
    • For more information visit: https://wdfw.wa.gov/about/covid-19-updates
  • Regular southbound single lane closures Monday through Saturday to accommodate construction.
  • Erosion control measures are being installed per permit requirements.
    • Dirt and dust may be present as clearing and grubbing of trees and bushes continues.
    • Upon the project’s completion, established trees will be replanted.
  • King County Metro changes:
    • Metro’s route 225 has replaced service for routes 234 and 244.
    • Four bus stops in the work zone (two stops south of NE 175th St and two stops north of NE 170th St) will be relocated for the duration of the project.
    • Temporary stops will be located relatively close to their existing locations. Signs have been posted showing where temporary bus stops are located. 
    • For more information about bus service, visit King County Metro’s website

General construction activity overview:

  • Construction is expected to last until Fall 2022.
  • Pedestrian access has been restricted to the east side of 68th Ave NE for most of the construction period. Cars will need to share the lane with bicyclists.
  • Boat traffic underneath the bridge will temporarily be closed for 15-minute periods in coordination with the U.S. Coast Guard during in-water work. During popular community events the City will continue to work with the U.S. Coast Guard to determine how to best accommodate access.
  • Nighttime access under the bridge may be restricted for up to 10 hours at a time during the summer months (see "Why will it take three years to build the new bridge?" FAQ).
  • During the months of July and August of 2020, 2021, 2022, and periodically at other times throughout the year, the parking stalls on the east side of the boat launch lot (the east half of the Department of Fish and Wildlife-managed lot on the west side of 68th Ave NE) will be used for construction and unavailable for parking. Vehicles and trailers will need to park in the available right-of-way on NE 175th St, west of 65th Ave NE.
  • The access road under the bridge that connects the Kenmore Boat Launch and Rhododendron Park has been closed until Fall 2022.
  • Regular lane closures will occur Monday through Saturday and potentially 24/7 during the summer months.
  • When closure of all southbound lanes on the existing bridge is required, southbound traffic will be rerouted to the northbound bridge with one lane operating in each direction.

FAQs