24/7 Lane Closures On Westbound I-90: July 18th-25th, 2014–Planning, Persistence and Patience Required!

Featured

UPDATE on 7/22/14:
Hasn’t the commute between Seattle and Bellevue on I-90, both west and east bound, been amazing so far? Commuters listened, and a significant number have changed their routines for the lane closures on I-90. Below are two tweets shared today on the Washington Department of Transportation’s Twitter profile, @wsdot_traffic. Keep up the great work commuters!

closure on i90 wb from 405Much patience is going to be needed as drivers try to navigate from Bellevue to Seattle the week of July 18th to July 25th. Multiple lane closures westbound on I-90, from Bellevue to Mercer Island, will accommodate the replacement of the expansion joints on this stretch of road. Due to the scope of the project, the work is going to require round-the-clock lane closures for these 7 days. Below are the key points in the two stages of the construction project, per the WSDOT website:

Stage one:

  • The three left lanes of westbound I-90 on the East Channel Bridge closed from 9:30 p.m. Friday, July 18 to 5 a.m. Friday, July 25.
  • Westbound I-90 will narrow to one lane at approximately Bellevue Way S.E. and will widen to three lanes at the east end of the East Channel Bridge. The ramp from I-405 joins I-90 to create the second lane across the bridge. The ramp from Bellevue Way S.E. joins I-90 to create the third lane across the bridge.
  • The Bellevue Way S.E. HOV on-ramp to westbound I-90 closed around-the-clock. All drivers will use the general purpose ramp.
  • The southbound I-405 HOV ramp to westbound I-90 closed around-the-clock. All drivers will use the general purpose ramp.

Stage 2: (expected to occur midway through the seven-day closure)

  • The three right lanes of westbound I-90 closed around-the-clock for the remainder of the seven-day continuous closure, through Friday morning.
  • Westbound I-90 will narrow to one lane at approximately Bellevue Way S.E. and will widen to three lanes at the east end of the East Channel Bridge. The ramp from I-405 joins I-90 to create the second lane across the bridge. The ramp from Bellevue Way S.E. joins I-90 to create the third lane across the bridge.
  • The Bellevue Way general purpose on-ramp to westbound I-90 will be closed around-the-clock. All drivers will use the HOV ramp.
  • The southbound I-405 HOV ramp to westbound I-90 closed around-the-clock. All drivers will use the HOV ramp.
  • The HOV lanes through the work zone will be open to all during construction and will be clearly marked.

Unfortunately, weekend closures are not appropriate for the scope of this road construction. The WSDOT put together a news release about this project, published on June 30, 2014. Drivers who utilize westbound I-90 to travel to Mercer Island or Seattle are encouraged to Know Before You Go And Have A Backup Plan. Check out the suggested alternatives and navigation tools outlined in the press release.

Alternatives to consider using during construction:

  • Choose an alternative travel mode such as car or vanpooling, public transportation, walking or cycling.
  • Set up a short-term Good to Go! account to use westbound SR 520 during the work.
  • Consider telecommuting.
  • Drivers heading westbound into Bellevue may want to consider exiting early and using surface streets to reach their destinations.
  • Allow plenty of extra time and expect additional congestion on alternate routes including SR 520 and surface streets.
  • Use westbound I-90 early in the morning or late at night.
  • Delay or reschedule discretionary trips.

Tools to help navigate the Eastside during the lane closures 7/18/14 to 7/25/14:

There will be additional pressure on the alternate routes around the Puget Sound Region. The tools outlined above should be extremely helpful to drivers as they plan day trips and embark on daily commutes. If you have suggestions on how to survive the expected congestion, we’d love to hear from you! Please share in the comment section below.

Westbound I-90 at East Channel Bridge – Animated Maps

UPDATE: The WSDOT Blog posted an I-90 Closure Survival Guide on July 9, 2014. From the Survival Guide:

If you don’t plan ahead, your typical commute could last an hour or more…taking an alternate route will help, but still add extra time to your trip because other routes will be affected with folks doing the same thing. If you can telework, or even take a vacation, this would be the week to do it.

When we had two lanes closed on westbound I-90 floating bridge in July 2009, we saw up to 7-mile backups, but we had the express lanes to help. On this closure we do not. Congestion could be much worse this time around….To keep delays from really getting horrible, we need at least 60 percent of drivers to adjust their plans. We recognize that’s a lot to ask, but every person who can change their plans helps.

Oh my! By planning ahead, utilizing alternate routes and practicing patience with our fellow drivers, we’ll get through this together. What are your plans for July 18th-25th, I-90 westbound commuters and Mercer Island residents?

UPDATE, TAKE 2: To add to the carmageddon fun, it appears that President Obama is expected to visit the Seattle and the Eastside on Tuesday, July 22nd. Are your vacation plans cemented yet? Telecommuting, anyone? Oh boy…

Weekly Real Estate Activity Report for Seattle, Eastside and Mercer Island: 7/18/14

Mercer Island Farmer’s Market, Sunday July 20th

toff

The MI Farmer’s Market took a quick break last weekend for Summer Celebration, but it’s back this weekend with some awesome new features for the whole family. The kid’s table will feature lavender bundles, which smell incredible. There is also a tasting this weekend featuring roasted vegetables…yum!

Make sure you visit Hedgehog Toffee; they have some of the best sweet-tooth-satisfiers out there. Be sure to visit their website here to read about the amazing story behind the brand. Enjoy your weekend everyone!

Open Houses: Saturday, July 19th and Sunday, July 20th, 2014

space needle_Lisa LewisThere’s been so much talk about next week’s lane closures on Westbound I-90 from Bellevue to Mercer Island, let’s concentrate on more enjoyable topics! Mashable published online a fun Summer in the City guide for Seattle. In the Cool Off section, Agua Verde Cafe and Paddle Club was highlighted. An afternoon out on Lake Union, paddle back to shore for happy hour and an authentic Mexican dinner — that sounds so fabulous!! In the Summer Events section, Bite of Seattle is mentioned. And that is this weekend, July 18th through the 20th! You can use the event guide to plan your day at Bite. Friday, at 8:30pm is Bite Movie Night at the Mural Amphitheatre, and Back to the Future is the scheduled flick. In the Sights Section, what caught my eye was the suggestion to bike along Alki. This multi-use trail is a lot of fun to ride, and there’s quite a bit of room to accommodate both bike riders and pedestrians. If you take the Alki Beach trail to the east end, stop in at Jack Block Park. This delightful place is nestled in among the more industrial part of the Alki Trail. Make sure to walk up the Observation Tower to drink in the amazing harbor views from this elevated perch.

If you were going to write a summer guide for the greater Seattle area, which favorite haunts and hidden gems would you include? Please share in the comment section!

Sold By Windermere Brokers from Windermere Real Estate/Mercer Island are going holding open several Mercer Island gems this weekend. Privacy, lush territorial views, elegance and special outdoor spaces are features of the homes available to preview.

Have a wonderful, fabulous weekend and hopefully traffic pressure won’t be as big of an issue as projected. Stay safe!

Mercer Island
$800,000 l 661046 l 4323 W Mercer Wy l Nancy LaVallee l Saturday July 19, 1-4pm

$1,000,000 l 658297 l 5200 90th Ave SE l Cynthia Schoonmaker l Sunday July 20, 1-4pm

$1,330,000 l 660339 l 9225 SE 60th St l Marianne Parks l Sunday July 20, 1-4pm

$1,350,000 l 647782 l 6741 W Mercer Wy l Larry Williams l Saturday July 19, 1-4pm & Anni Zilz, Sunday July 20, 1-4pm

The Mercer Island Open House List is ready to conveniently print from this blog post!  23 homes are available to preview Saturday, July 19th, and Sunday, July 20th. The list prices range from $287,000 to $4,625,000. The prominent features of the homes being held open over the weekend include recent price reductions, new to the market, outdoor entertaining spaces and walk-in pantries.

Capture

 

 

 

 

2nd Quarter 2014 – Reviews for Mercer Island, Seattle and the Eastside

Hot Off The Presses!

Mercer Island

The first half of 2014 continues to trend upward in a seller-favored real estate market. Lowered interest rates coupled with more homes coming to market is the silver lining for buyers.

The number of closed residential home sales is up from the record 2nd quarter of last year—111 compared to 101. Second quarter closed sales typically include those homes that went under contract March-May and customarily represent the peak of the market in any given year. The average cost per square foot climbed to $442 from $372–a 19% increase over the same period last year.

On the condominium front, the average cost per square foot increased from $292 to $308–up 5.5% over the second quarter of last year.

Click here for the full report and neighborhood-by-neighborhood statistics!

© Copyright 2014, Windermere Real Estate/Mercer Island. Statistics provided by the Northwest Multiple Listing service and deemed accurate but not guaranteed.

Seattle

Steady as she goes. The Seattle-Metro residential market has grown in very incremental steps with a modest 8% increase in average cost per square foot.

Average sale prices were up 4% to $570,263 from $548,011 during the second quarter of last year. Multiple offers tend to be the norm in most Seattle price ranges causing the average list price to sales price ratio to climb to a noteworthy 102%.

Seattle condo sales have been booming with 761 units sold in the second quarter compared to 723 for the same period last year. The average cost per square foot has increased to $388 from $342 during that same period.

Click here for the full report and to see how prices have changed in your neighborhood!

 

 

© Copyright 2014, Windermere Real Estate/Mercer Island. Statistics provided by the Northwest Multiple Listing service and deemed accurate but not guaranteed.

Eastside

Average residential sales prices continue to climb on the Eastside, spurred by significant redevelopment and long-awaited new construction on lots closest to downtown suburban city hubs.

The average cost per square foot on the Eastside climbed to $282 from $249 during the second quarter of last year. Average sale prices increased to $765,132 from $665,924–a 15% rise over last year and the largest increase region-wide.

The Eastside condo market, from Bellevue to Woodinville, continues to show strength as average sale prices increase to $344,130 from $270,000 a year ago. Of note is that condos located closest to the core downtown areas of Bellevue and Kirkland have benefited most greatly in this market.

Click here for the full report and to see how prices fared in your neighborhood!

 

 

© Copyright 2014, Windermere Real Estate/Mercer Island. Statistics provided by the Northwest Multiple Listing service and deemed accurate but not guaranteed.

*The current Quarter in Review is always located on Mercer Island Pulse’s Current Market Trends page

Weekly Real Estate Activity Report for Seattle, Eastside and Mercer Island: 7/11/14

Mercer Island Summer Celebration, July 12th & 13th 2014: Get The Scoop On This Weekend’s Activities and Road Closures

summer celebration 2014Summer Celebration Weekend arrives on Mercer Island Saturday July 12th! All of us at Windermere Real Estate/Mercer Island are excited about the fun activities planned for Summer Celebration. The weekend will kick off with a fun run (9:30 am) and parade (10 am) through downtown Mercer Island.

This year’s theme is Celebrating the Pacific Northwest. Throughout the weekend, the Paul Buynan Lumberjack Show will be performing next to the Mercerdale Skate Park. The action packed show includes log rolling, hot saw racking, dragster chain sawing, 2-man underhand chopping and crosscut sawing. The fireworks show scheduled for the evening of Saturday, July 12th, is promised to be AMAZING. The Roanoke Inn is sponsoring this year’s firework display, in honor of their Centennial. The Kitchen Plus Shuttle will be on hand between 6:45 pm and 9:45 to provide rides from Mercer Island City Hall to Luther Burbank Park for the fireworks show. After the show, shuttle buses will be lined up to provide all riders transport back to City Hall. Wooden O’s special Summer Celebration performance of Shakespeare’s The Two Gentlemen of Verona will start at 2pm over at Luther Burbank Park’s amphitheater. Click here to get the full scoop on all the fun Summer Celebration activities planned throughout the weekend.

Windermere Real Estate/Mercer Island is hosting two fabulous Summer Celebration events scheduled for Sunday, July 13th. First is the Garden Talk, 1pm—- beloved Northwest garden expert, Ciscoe Morris will entertain you with a humorous, yet informative presentation on summer blooming plants. He will include all kinds of garden tips and may even perform the hummingbird mating dance. Oh la la! And of course he will set aside time to answer all of your garden questions. Second is the children’s event My First Garden, scheduled for 2pm. Friendly Windemere Mercer Island brokers will be on hand to help the kids plant dahlia flowers to take home and enjoy. And we do all the clean up! We’ll also have a booth at Summer Celebration, which will be open all weekend. Stop by so the kids can enter our annual coloring contest and you can chat with our brokers.

Road Closures
To accommodate the weekend festivities, there will be some road closures in the downtown area. Below is the complete list:

Festival Closures, 7am Friday, July 11th through 9pm Sunday, July 13th
SE 32nd St from 78th SE to 77 AVE SE (for food booths)
77 AVE SE from SE 29th St to SE 32nd St (for vendor booths)

Parade Route, 9:15 am to 11am on Saturday, July 12th
78th AVE SE (from SE 27th St to SE 32nd St)
78th AVE SE, Sunset & 78th, and Sunset & 77th
Intersections of SE 27th, SE 28th, SE 29th, SE 30th and SE 32nd along 78th AVE SE

Mercer Mile Fun Run, 9:15 am on Saturday, July 12th
78th AVE SE & SE 34th St / runs is along 78th