The Seattle Squeeze Begins

Seattle is heading into three weeks without the stretch of State Route 99 that runs through downtown, as the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) switches road connections over from the aging Alaskan Way Viaduct to a new tunnel, part of what has become known as the “Seattle Squeeze.” We’ve known this period was coming for a while, and even before the exact timing was first announced back in September, transportation officials have been repeating the same refrain for coping with dramatic traffic impacts: Plan your commute options early. Work from home. Take public transportation.

In preparation, both the Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) and King County Metro have taken steps to encourage transit use and shoulder increased capacity—but some transit advocates say that’s not enough.