• Tuesday brings the worst traffic so far of the SR 99 closure

    By: Graham Johnson

    Updated:

    Farheen Siddiqui is among the Downtown Seattle workers who noticed a change Tuesday in traffic as the second week of the State Route 99 shutdown began.

    She commutes by bus from Kirkland.

    "Today felt very different. It was a lot more cars on the road," Siddiqui said.

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    Last week, commuters around the region largely found the first week of the state highway closure to be no problem as many people parked their cars to ride transit or just stay home.

    Commuters, and the Seattle Department of Transportation, reported heavy traffic on the West Seattle Bridge and the Mercer Street corridor.

    "It's possible that some kind of fatigue might have set in. We totally understand that, and I think we expected at some point there might be a little bit of correction back to old habits," said SDOT Downtown Mobility Director Heather Marx.

    "We have to hope that people will take the experience of today and maybe change things up tomorrow. We've got to be in this for the long haul," Marx said.

    For commuters tempted to drive, the Port of Seattle warned to expect more truck traffic along East Marginal Way for the rest of the week.

    That's because the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day holiday compressed five days of port work into four.

    The state hopes to have SR99 fully realigned from the closed Alaskan Way Viaduct to the new tunnel that replaces it in about two weeks.

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