SEATTLE - Now that the massive tunnel boring machine known as Bertha is done drilling, and work continues on the new SR 99 tunnel under downtown Seattle, the focus turns to demolishing the Alaskan Way Viaduct.
Transportation officials are preparing to take down the historic structure, which has been a critical pipeline into downtown Seattle for decades, in 2019.
On Thursday, the public can get a look at the plan and ask questions.
In 2011, the south end of the double-deck structure was removed to make way for the tunneling part of the project.
Machines took big bites out of the old concrete, which came crashing down. But that section of the viaduct was further removed from other buildings.
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Those who drive the viaduct know there are some areas where the elevated freeway is just feet from buildings.
So, engineers have been studying how to take the viaduct apart safely while trying to keep some level of access to the waterfront.
The Washington State Department of Transportation expects the demolition to take about nine months.
When it’s finished, the Seattle waterfront will have an entirely different look.
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