The I-405/State Route 167 interchange project will build a new flyover ramp

WSDOT breaks ground on improvements at I-405/SR 167 Interchange

Gov. Jay Inslee joined federal, state and local officials Thursday to celebrate the first project to begin construction with Connecting Washington funding in the greater Seattle area.

Gov. Jay Inslee joined federal, state and local officials Thursday to celebrate the first project to begin construction with Connecting Washington funding in the greater Seattle area.

At a groundbreaking ceremony under sunny skies near Renton City Hall, leaders marked the start of the Interstate 405/State Route 167 Interchange Direct Connector project. Scheduled to open to traffic in summer 2019, the project will build a new flyover ramp connecting the high occupancy toll lanes on SR 167 with the carpool lanes on I-405.

“This new, direct connection will make trips easier for commuters and provide traffic relief through this vital corridor,” Inslee said. “This is first project in King County to break ground with funding from the historic, bipartisan Connecting Washington transportation package that I signed into law last summer.”

Currently, commuters experience up to eight hours of congestion at the I-405/SR 167 interchange each day. Right now, drivers in the left carpool or HOT lane must merge across all lanes of traffic to exit. Then they must merge back across to continue their trip in the carpool or HOT lane. By eliminating the need for this weaving, the Direct Connector will improve carpool lane trips but will also smooth out traffic in the regular lanes.

“This project has been one of our top priorities and we’re pleased to be moving forward with construction,” said Roger Millar, secretary of transportation. “We’re grateful for the longstanding partnerships with communities up and down the I-405 corridor that have brought us to this point. The Direct Connector is an important next step in providing transportation choices in the face of congestion.”

Thursday’s groundbreaking included remarks by Gov. Inslee, Rep. Steve Bergquist, Renton City Council President Randy Corman, Transportation Secretary Millar. Photos of the event are available on the WSDOT Flickr site.

Construction work ahead

The Direct Connector is the first phase of major improvements between Renton and Bellevue, which also includes adding new highway capacity between the SR 167 interchange and downtown Bellevue.

Earlier this summer, WSDOT awarded a $115.9 million design-build contract to Guy F. Atkinson Construction of Renton to construct the project. As part of the project, contractor crews will also rebuild portions of local streets, relocate a noise wall in a neighboring community, and complete a new fish-passable culvert at Rolling Hills Creek.

Utility relocation is already underway. Motorists can expect to see additional construction activities start up in the coming months. The latest road closure information will be posted on WSDOT’s construction update website throughout the project.


More in News

Rep. Joe Fitzgibbon and Page Carson Foster. Photo credit Washington State Legislative Support Services
Carson Foster serves as page in Washington State House

The following was submitted to the Reporter: Carson Foster, a student at… Continue reading

Jim Pitts stands on walkway overlooking filtration chambers at the King County South Treatment Plant in Renton. Aaron Kunkler/staff photo
Human waste: Unlikely climate change hero?

King County treatment plant joins effort to counteract effects of carbon dioxide.

Washington State Capitol Building. Photo by Emma Epperly/WNPA Olympia News Bureau
Legislation targets rape kit backlog

WA has about 10,000 untested kits; new law would reduce testing time to 45 days

File photo
Law enforcement oversight office seeks subpoena power

Organization has been unable to investigate King County Sheriff’s Office.

The 2015 Wolverine Fire in the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest near Lake Chelan. Photo courtesy of Washington Department of Natural Resources/Kari Greer
Western Washington faces elevated wildfire risk in 2019

Humans cause majority of fires in state

Courtesy of
King County approves bargaining agreement with 60 unions

Employees will receive wage increases and $500 bonus.

Call for peace, unity, understanding

City, county and state leaders show support of Islam community in wake of massacre at New Zealand mosques

King County bail reform hinges on pretrial decision making

Data on inmates has shown that being held pretrial affects the likelihood of conviction.

State smoking age rising to 21 in 2020

Legislature approves change

A man addresses the King County Council during a public hearing March 20 at New Life Church in Renton. He presented bags filled with what he said was hazardous materials dropped on his property by bald eagles. Another speaker made similar claims. Haley Ausbun/staff photo
Locals show support for King County waste to energy plant

Public hearing on landfill’s future was held March 20 in Renton.

Defense Distributed’s 3D printed gun, The Liberator. Photo by Vvzvlad/Wikimedia Commons
‘Ghost gun’ bill moves to Senate committees

Legislation would make 3-D printed guns illegal.

King County Council with Sarah Reyneveld, chair of the King County Women’s Advisory Board. Photo courtesy of King County
King County proclaims March as Women’s History Month

This year’s theme is Womxn Who Lead: Stories from the past and how they influence the future.