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Author Topic: Washington  (Read 141394 times)

jakeroot

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Re: Washington
« Reply #1000 on: May 27, 2021, 02:03:12 PM »

Certainly could be. $33M for a whole new lane over such a long distance seems like a bargain; I'm sure the overall cost would skyrocket if they had to install all of the relevant toll infrastructure.

If you read the whole project page, it says they're just adding the lane within the existing pavement footprint and narrowing the shoulders, that's why it's so cheap.

*takes a closer look*

Well, I'll be damned. WSDOT just doesn't care about shoulders anymore, do they? :-D

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Re: Washington
« Reply #1001 on: May 28, 2021, 02:34:15 PM »

Certainly could be. $33M for a whole new lane over such a long distance seems like a bargain; I'm sure the overall cost would skyrocket if they had to install all of the relevant toll infrastructure.

If you read the whole project page, it says they're just adding the lane within the existing pavement footprint and narrowing the shoulders, that's why it's so cheap.

*takes a closer look*

Well, I'll be damned. WSDOT just doesn't care about shoulders anymore, do they? :-D

It certainly seems that way. This wouldn't be the first time they've added lanes by simply narrowing the shoulder.

stevashe

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Re: Washington
« Reply #1002 on: May 28, 2021, 05:23:48 PM »


*takes a closer look*

Well, I'll be damned. WSDOT just doesn't care about shoulders anymore, do they? :-D

It certainly seems that way. This wouldn't be the first time they've added lanes by simply narrowing the shoulder.

They sure don't seem to care! You could probably find portions of every freeway in the Seattle area with narrowed shoulders. Also, I don't get how the current project to add auxiliary lanes on I-90 between Bellevue and Issaquah is allowed on an interstate, violating both the shoulder and lane width standards, and yet stuff like CA 210 and CA 15 can't be signed as interstates for minor lapses in their shoulders??

EDIT: To be fair to the project at hand, it looks like NB 167 in this area has a 12 right shoulder and 10 foot left shoulder, which is considerably wider than the 10 foot right/4 foot left called for by interstate standards for a two-lane roadway. Of course, this still isn't quite enough width for 3 standard lanes and shoulders, but still. Interestingly, the SB side does not have these wider shoulders, so whenever they get around to adding HOV or express lanes there, it will cost significantly more.
« Last Edit: May 28, 2021, 05:33:39 PM by stevashe »
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jakeroot

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Re: Washington
« Reply #1003 on: May 29, 2021, 02:01:54 AM »


*takes a closer look*

Well, I'll be damned. WSDOT just doesn't care about shoulders anymore, do they? :-D

It certainly seems that way. This wouldn't be the first time they've added lanes by simply narrowing the shoulder.

They sure don't seem to care! You could probably find portions of every freeway in the Seattle area with narrowed shoulders. Also, I don't get how the current project to add auxiliary lanes on I-90 between Bellevue and Issaquah is allowed on an interstate, violating both the shoulder and lane width standards, and yet stuff like CA 210 and CA 15 can't be signed as interstates for minor lapses in their shoulders??

EDIT: To be fair to the project at hand, it looks like NB 167 in this area has a 12 right shoulder and 10 foot left shoulder, which is considerably wider than the 10 foot right/4 foot left called for by interstate standards for a two-lane roadway. Of course, this still isn't quite enough width for 3 standard lanes and shoulders, but still. Interestingly, the SB side does not have these wider shoulders, so whenever they get around to adding HOV or express lanes there, it will cost significantly more.

I find one of the hairier spots to be southbound I-5 just past Orillia Rd. The left lanes seem to narrow up to between 10 and 11 feet, and there is virtually zero shoulder on the left. It was quite clearly added on later (I think in the 1990s) by narrowing the roadway and filling in the shoulder. This is okay for three lane freeways, but seems unwise on five or six lane freeways.

The northbound 167 lanes were originally the bi-directional two-lane highway before it was twinned in the late 80s. As it was bi-directional, shoulders along both outside edges were...very important. The southbound lanes were designed to the 10/4 rule, being built as a single-directional carriageway from the start.
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TEG24601

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Re: Washington
« Reply #1004 on: May 30, 2021, 01:22:54 PM »


*takes a closer look*

Well, I'll be damned. WSDOT just doesn't care about shoulders anymore, do they? :-D

It certainly seems that way. This wouldn't be the first time they've added lanes by simply narrowing the shoulder.

They sure don't seem to care! You could probably find portions of every freeway in the Seattle area with narrowed shoulders. Also, I don't get how the current project to add auxiliary lanes on I-90 between Bellevue and Issaquah is allowed on an interstate, violating both the shoulder and lane width standards, and yet stuff like CA 210 and CA 15 can't be signed as interstates for minor lapses in their shoulders??

EDIT: To be fair to the project at hand, it looks like NB 167 in this area has a 12 right shoulder and 10 foot left shoulder, which is considerably wider than the 10 foot right/4 foot left called for by interstate standards for a two-lane roadway. Of course, this still isn't quite enough width for 3 standard lanes and shoulders, but still. Interestingly, the SB side does not have these wider shoulders, so whenever they get around to adding HOV or express lanes there, it will cost significantly more.

I find one of the hairier spots to be southbound I-5 just past Orillia Rd. The left lanes seem to narrow up to between 10 and 11 feet, and there is virtually zero shoulder on the left. It was quite clearly added on later (I think in the 1990s) by narrowing the roadway and filling in the shoulder. This is okay for three lane freeways, but seems unwise on five or six lane freeways.

The northbound 167 lanes were originally the bi-directional two-lane highway before it was twinned in the late 80s. As it was bi-directional, shoulders along both outside edges were...very important. The southbound lanes were designed to the 10/4 rule, being built as a single-directional carriageway from the start.


I think they did the same thing on the NB side as well. I recall driving either in the HOV or adjacent to it, and my tires would keep catching the seams between concrete panels, or between concrete and asphalt (in the HOV lanes).  I would have to fight sometimes to stay in the lane.  I hope one day they all get resurfaced, and they think if they really need all of those lanes.


Semi-related, when they replaced the pavement on SR 525 and sections of SR 20 about 3-4 years ago, WSDOT and their contractors, just carved out the roadway between the fog lines +/- 12", then repaved.  Something I had never seen done before.  I asked WSDOT, and they said it was normal procedure.  One side effect, is if you hit it with your tires, you can start to travel in a direction you did not intend.  Sort of dangerous with all the bike and motorcycle traffic we have.
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ErmineNotyours

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Re: Washington
« Reply #1005 on: May 31, 2021, 08:10:50 PM »

I-5 between 516 and almost Federal Way: Shortly after they rebuilt the railings of the 1959 overpasses, they demolished them and made the bridges wider for an HOV project.  Before the actual lanes were built, there was another anti-tax initiative passed, and the work was wasted as they simply narrowed the lanes and used the left shoulder.  The bridges were kept narrow with portable Jersey barriers blocking off the improvements.  But apparently petition-signers know better, and it's not a waste after all. :banghead:  South of there they had Sound Transit money, and the widening was done first class.
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stevashe

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Re: Washington
« Reply #1006 on: May 31, 2021, 11:58:44 PM »

Semi-related, when they replaced the pavement on SR 525 and sections of SR 20 about 3-4 years ago, WSDOT and their contractors, just carved out the roadway between the fog lines +/- 12", then repaved.  Something I had never seen done before.  I asked WSDOT, and they said it was normal procedure.  One side effect, is if you hit it with your tires, you can start to travel in a direction you did not intend.  Sort of dangerous with all the bike and motorcycle traffic we have.

Are you talking about this here? https://goo.gl/maps/9SqzoJuFVcK9tbzk9

That is indeed standard practice to not repave the shoulder if the pavement there is still in good condition, they'll probably repave the shoulder next time the main lanes need it :P

You can see something similar on I-5 from when they repaved it in 2017: https://goo.gl/maps/b2b1DGHHKRFNvydp9 But they did go a few feet beyond the fog line on the right to replace the rumble strip.
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ErmineNotyours

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Re: Washington
« Reply #1007 on: June 01, 2021, 12:07:47 AM »

Semi-related, when they replaced the pavement on SR 525 and sections of SR 20 about 3-4 years ago, WSDOT and their contractors, just carved out the roadway between the fog lines +/- 12", then repaved.  Something I had never seen done before.  I asked WSDOT, and they said it was normal procedure.  One side effect, is if you hit it with your tires, you can start to travel in a direction you did not intend.  Sort of dangerous with all the bike and motorcycle traffic we have.

Are you talking about this here? https://goo.gl/maps/9SqzoJuFVcK9tbzk9

That is indeed standard practice to not repave the shoulder if the pavement there is still in good condition, they'll probably repave the shoulder next time the main lanes need it :P

You can see something similar on I-5 from when they repaved it in 2017: https://goo.gl/maps/b2b1DGHHKRFNvydp9 But they did go a few feet beyond the fog line on the right to replace the rumble strip.

Go a bit further north and you can see scraped, unrepaved road in progress.
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Bruce

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Re: Washington
« Reply #1008 on: June 04, 2021, 02:09:05 AM »

There's a new pedestrian and bicycle bridge planned to be installed over I-5 near Northgate Mall (to serve the new light rail station) in a few weeks.

Seattle city councilmember Debora Juarez has suggested naming it for Rep John Lewis...probably not the best way to honor the man, but would be on-brand for a state and county named for out-of-town people.

https://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/transportation/councilmember-suggests-naming-new-light-rail-station-bridge-for-rep-john-lewis/

jakeroot

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Re: Washington
« Reply #1009 on: June 04, 2021, 12:06:48 PM »

I-5 between 516 and almost Federal Way: Shortly after they rebuilt the railings of the 1959 overpasses, they demolished them and made the bridges wider for an HOV project.  Before the actual lanes were built, there was another anti-tax initiative passed, and the work was wasted as they simply narrowed the lanes and used the left shoulder.  The bridges were kept narrow with portable Jersey barriers blocking off the improvements.  But apparently petition-signers know better, and it's not a waste after all. :banghead:  South of there they had Sound Transit money, and the widening was done first class.

Another interesting thing about that bridge-widening project would be the support pillars. Below the overpass on 272nd, the pillars force the road down to four lanes, making the turn lanes very short. Ideally, there would be room for five lanes beneath the overpass and the turn lanes could transition half-way (or there-about). The pillars installed around 2001/2002 are the in the same location as the original pillars. I'm not even sure if it's technically advisable to change the positioning of pillars when widening a bridge, relative to other support pillars, but it would have been nice to start working towards a wider underpass there.

I suggested to WSDOT that these left turns should be FYA signals, to reduce the frequency of left-turning traffic blocking the left through lane; after some initial communication, they fell silent. Initially there was some worry about oncoming visibility westbound, and then it was an issue around the mast arms not being strong enough. Still, there aren't any "no left turn on red" signs, so it's not like it's not already somewhat legal to make a permissive left. Of course, not many people know about that law.
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jakeroot

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Re: Washington
« Reply #1010 on: June 04, 2021, 12:08:45 PM »

There's a new pedestrian and bicycle bridge planned to be installed over I-5 near Northgate Mall (to serve the new light rail station) in a few weeks.

Seattle city councilmember Debora Juarez has suggested naming it for Rep John Lewis...probably not the best way to honor the man, but would be on-brand for a state and county named for out-of-town people.

https://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/transportation/councilmember-suggests-naming-new-light-rail-station-bridge-for-rep-john-lewis/

Seems like an odd thing to give a name, but I'm for it. As long as it's something like "John Lewis Bridge"; something long like "Representative John Lewis Memorial Pedestrian Bridge" is too long and will never catch on.

There's a lot of memorial highways in this state, and I'm not aware of any that actually entered the public lexicon. It's a real shame since named roadways are, at least in my opinion, a nice change from the usual numbering.
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jakeroot

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Re: Washington
« Reply #1011 on: June 04, 2021, 06:11:29 PM »

Here is one of the new three-lane meters at I-5 and Tillicum. Rare example of a metered HOV lane. The next on-ramp at Thorne Lane has a non-metered HOV lane.

Anyone know why they are placing the traffic lights in this way? Really awkward placement.


Ramp Meter, Tillicum by Jake Root, on Flickr
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Re: Washington
« Reply #1012 on: June 07, 2021, 09:16:26 PM »

Maybe it gives them the option of metering the HOV lane or just leaving the light solid green.
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Re: Washington
« Reply #1013 on: June 19, 2021, 10:37:01 AM »

Looks like WSDOT is negating basically everything they gained from the Sharps Corner Roundabout on SR 20.


Part of the reason they went with a roundabout instead of an overpass was to be able to increase capacity going west to south, at a lower cost.  Apparently, however, the people going eastbound through the roundabout, can't read pavement markings, and keep jumping in front of drivers, so they are reducing the west to south movement to 1 lane.  It won't stop the eastbound drivers from jumping in front of those in the circle, just reduce capacity, and undo all of the work they accomplished by building the roundabout in the first place.


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Re: Washington
« Reply #1014 on: June 19, 2021, 12:36:28 PM »

Multi-lane roundabouts tend to experience high crash rates. Raise your hand if you saw this coming. 🖐

This goskagit.com article from 2019 highlighted the developing issues.

I also noticed a pretty severe path overlap issue on the eastbound entrance when the roundabout first opened. Drivers seemed to routinely drift from the outside lane of the westbound entrance to the inside lane of the roundabout. WSDOT "fixed" this with new guidance markings. I do wonder if there is a connection. Certainly eastbound traffic was more important, so reducing the left turn capacity was the only option if that specific crossover was the issue.

I like roundabouts, but multi-lane variants are just so problematic. My prediction is that WSDOT will continue to modify the roundabout until there is effectively just one through lane. Which would clearly be inadequate for 30k cars, so their actual best option would be to remove the roundabout at that point and reinstate the continuous green-T with an improved double left turn. Or some sort of flyover for eastbound traffic.

Also: where did that graphic come from?
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kkt

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Re: Washington
« Reply #1015 on: June 19, 2021, 02:38:10 PM »

Multi-lane roundabouts tend to experience high crash rates. Raise your hand if you saw this coming. 🖐


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Re: Washington
« Reply #1016 on: June 19, 2021, 04:20:31 PM »

Makes me wonder how we'll handle the SR 9/SR 204 roundabout in Lake Stevens. The amount of traffic it has to handle is going to make it an amusing sight.

SR 9/SR 204 Intersection Preferred Alternative Design by Washington State Dept of Transportation, on Flickr

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Re: Washington
« Reply #1017 on: June 19, 2021, 04:41:19 PM »

Multi-lane roundabouts tend to experience high crash rates. Raise your hand if you saw this coming. 🖐

This goskagit.com article from 2019 highlighted the developing issues.

I also noticed a pretty severe path overlap issue on the eastbound entrance when the roundabout first opened. Drivers seemed to routinely drift from the outside lane of the westbound entrance to the inside lane of the roundabout. WSDOT "fixed" this with new guidance markings. I do wonder if there is a connection. Certainly eastbound traffic was more important, so reducing the left turn capacity was the only option if that specific crossover was the issue.

I like roundabouts, but multi-lane variants are just so problematic. My prediction is that WSDOT will continue to modify the roundabout until there is effectively just one through lane. Which would clearly be inadequate for 30k cars, so their actual best option would be to remove the roundabout at that point and reinstate the continuous green-T with an improved double left turn. Or some sort of flyover for eastbound traffic.

Also: where did that graphic come from?


That graphic came from the Facebook Post from the former WSDOT North Spokesperson.


They nixed the flyover early in the design process, as it was inadequate for growing demand and the costs associated with it.  The biggest problem is that the original design had a fly under for eastbound traffic, which was removed in the final design.  That being said, the overall design has been perfect, just the poor drivers coming from the West who can't read signs, lane markings, or traffic movements are the problem.  The crashes are also far less severe than those from the light, which were often T-bones, instead of side-swipes.


WSDOT needs to just keep it as is, and if anything, remove an eastbound lane, rather than a southbound lane.



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jakeroot

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Re: Washington
« Reply #1018 on: June 19, 2021, 07:37:14 PM »

Makes me wonder how we'll handle the SR 9/SR 204 roundabout in Lake Stevens. The amount of traffic it has to handle is going to make it an amusing sight.

SR 9/SR 204 Intersection Preferred Alternative Design by Washington State Dept of Transportation, on Flickr

It'll probably handle the traffic quite well, but there will be a significant number of crashes. WSDOT will make minor modifications, but it'll likely become a crash hotspot. Most multi-lane roundabouts are crash hotspots.
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jakeroot

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Re: Washington
« Reply #1019 on: June 19, 2021, 07:41:06 PM »

That graphic came from the Facebook Post from the former WSDOT North Spokesperson.

They nixed the flyover early in the design process, as it was inadequate for growing demand and the costs associated with it.  The biggest problem is that the original design had a fly under for eastbound traffic, which was removed in the final design.  That being said, the overall design has been perfect, just the poor drivers coming from the West who can't read signs, lane markings, or traffic movements are the problem.  The crashes are also far less severe than those from the light, which were often T-bones, instead of side-swipes.

WSDOT needs to just keep it as is, and if anything, remove an eastbound lane, rather than a southbound lane.

What's their name? Is it a public post?

Unfortunately, though the bolded statement may be true, there is a significant amount of evidence that this is the case at virtually all multi-lane roundabouts country-wide, and the engineers should have known this would be a problem. I'm sure engineers and planners are totally stumped by this. I know I am. But it's true, pretty much everywhere. The only multi-lane roundabouts that seem to work are 2x1 roundabouts, where each crossover has no more than three paths crossing (as opposed to the current eastbound entrance, which has four paths crossing (2 over 2)).

The crashes may be less severe, but I may argue the total economic loss is actually greater. Even the most minor crashes usually involve some level of insurance claim, and can also negatively affect vehicle values. Crashes are expensive, and we shouldn't be constructing intersections that routinely cause them. Especially when the old intersection did not have a history of major crashes.

For the record: T-Bone collisions are absolutely possible at roundabouts, but especially multi-lane roundabouts. All drivers have to do is ignore the lane lines (say, by failing to notice the approaching roundabout) and head straight-on into circulating traffic. It's actually quite easy. If drivers followed the rules, of course this wouldn't be the case. But if drivers followed rules, we wouldn't have crashes now, would we?!?!




WSDOT could reduce the eastbound entry to one lane, but that would decrease SR-20 Spur to SR-20 to one lane in each direction, half the capacity of the original signal (and then some...traffic is moving slower now as well). Factor in the possibility for continued crashes with less capacity, and we're left with...well:

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Re: Washington
« Reply #1020 on: July 02, 2021, 03:26:58 PM »

Some decisions have been made with regards to I-5 through Chehalis:

https://wsdot.wa.gov/news/2021/06/30/travelers-are-invited-learn-about-future-safety-improvements-change-how-you-travel

- Southbound I-5 will be widened to three lanes between Chamber Way and WA-6 (no word on northbound I-5).

- Roundabouts will be installed at the ramp terminals and adjacent intersections at both WA-6 and Chamber Way.

- Ramp meters will be installed at:
  * 13th St
  * WA-6
  * Chamber Way
  * Mellen St
  * southbound Harrison Ave

The plan to meter the southbound on-ramp from Harrison Ave is a bit confusing to me. Are they intending to widen the C/D lanes? If they don't, that meter will conflict with traffic going between Harrison Ave and Mellen St, despite not playing a role in I-5 congestion.
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KEK Inc.

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Re: Washington
« Reply #1021 on: July 02, 2021, 10:40:22 PM »

I-5 desperately needs to be 6 lanes between Napavine and Castle Rock.
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Re: Washington
« Reply #1022 on: July 10, 2021, 12:44:19 PM »

The new bridge over I-5 in Fife has opened. It is called Wapato Way north of 20th St E, and thus it's the "Wapato Way Bridge":




As it's a route I currently drive with some frequency, I have driven over it numerous times already. Here's my thoughts:

* the approach chicanes from Pacific Hwy are too aggressive, forcing trucks to "take the lane" far too early;
* the roundabout itself flows better than the old 70th Ave signal, but not massively;
* overall it's well striped. No strangeness in that way;
* the new bridge carries an extension of the Interurban Trail, and users have to cross the roundabout to reach Pacific Hwy. This involves either three or four separate crossings, overall not a very enjoyable experience.

Overall, I think I would have preferred a signal here. The sheer number of trucks seems to overwhelm the roundabout, making it single-lane quite often. Won't be long before one tips over, I'm sure.

Hopefully, when the new 167 Fwy opens, there will be less trucks through here, but the proposed placement of the exit and entrance ramps means that arterial streets will still be carrying freight traffic for some time.
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Bruce

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Re: Washington
« Reply #1023 on: July 15, 2021, 09:56:01 PM »

The I-5 offramp to Pacific Avenue (SR 529) in Everett was blocked for a bit today while firefighters investigated a 45-foot-long tunnel that someone had dug by hand under the ramp. No one was found, but a few pieces of clothing and other personal items were recovered.

https://www.heraldnet.com/news/collapsed-tunnel-in-everett-leads-to-3-alarm-rescue-effort/

ErmineNotyours

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Re: Washington
« Reply #1024 on: July 27, 2021, 11:40:00 AM »

[snip]

 Northbound 167 to Northbound 405 in Renton;

[snip]

In my experience, the one in Tukwila and the one in Lakewood are activated everyday as part of the regular rush. I'm not 100% sure the one in Renton is active yet, but everything is there for it to be activated last I checked.

[snip]

I've seen the one in Renton activated when the signal was still hooded, and people followed it.  Now that its out in the open, I've never seen it turned on even when the entrance from Talbot Road is metered.


The 167 to north I-405 meter is now active.  https://mynorthwest.com/3055425/new-167-ramp-meter-merge-with-i405/
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