King County Metro Transit is warning riders to prepare for upcoming transit delays and reroutes on state Route 99 and Aurora Avenue North as the state closes sections of the roadway for construction from 10 p.m. Friday, Aug. 22, through 5 a.m. Wednesday, Aug. 27.
Seventeen routes will be directly affected by delays, reroutes or both during the construction closures. Riders can go online to see reroute information for five Aurora Avenue North bus routes. Riders on another 12 bus routes should prepare for delays as buses travel to and from Downtown Seattle on the Alaskan Way Viaduct.
Because of potential widespread traffic delays, most bus riders using transit service into Seattle should prepare for possible weekday commute delays Monday, Aug. 25, and Tuesday, Aug. 26, as traffic shifts from SR 99 to Interstate 5 and other city streets.
•Weekend buses to be rerouted (10 p.m. Friday, Aug. 22, through 5 a.m. Monday, Aug. 25) — Routes 120, 125 and RapidRide C and D lines will be rerouted 10 p.m. Friday, Aug. 22 until 5 a.m. Monday, Aug. 25.
•Weekend, weekday buses to be rerouted (10 p.m. Friday, Aug. 22, through 5 a.m. Wednesday, Aug. 27) — Routes 5 local and express, 16, 26 Express, 28 Express and RapidRide E Line will be rerouted, with spillover system delays due to traffic.
Service on Aurora Avenue North will remain on regular route until Aloha Street in both directions, with reroutes to and from Belltown. Service delays will be monitored by Metro.
•Weekday routes facing delays (Monday, Aug. 25, and Tuesday, Aug. 26) — Weekday routes using the Alaskan Way Viaduct (Routes 21 Express, 55, 56, 57, 113, 120, 121, 122, 123, 125 and RapidRide C and D lines) will remain on regular routes, missing no stops, but face potential traffic delays as they enter and exit Downtown Seattle.
The Washington State Department of Transportation recommends commuters allow plenty of extra travel time, leave early or delay trips, avoid traveling during peak commute times, delay or reschedule discretionary trips and consider telecommuting or bicycling.
If you must commute, consider avoiding peak commute times, take an earlier morning bus to allow extra travel time or travel using an alternate bus route to avoid the construction area.
I-5 and SR 99 vanpoolers can fill an empty seat in their vanpool and get in the running to win one of five $50 MasterCard Rewards cards for their van. Participants need to fill out a ticket-to-ride and ride at least one of the closure days to qualify. All valid entries will go into the drawing.
Commuters can consider traveling on the King County Water Taxi, which has capacity for riders on its earlier morning sailings from West Seattle and Vashon Island.
Bus-tracking programs will lose accuracy when buses are rerouted or significantly delayed, so your favorite smartphone apps may not be reliable during this time.