TUKWILA, Wash. — Northbound I-5 drivers going through Tukwila will need to prepare for weekend lane closures so crews can make emergency repairs to the infrastructure. 

Between Friday, Sept. 27 at 10 p.m. and Sunday, Sept. 29 at 11:59 p.m., northbound I-5 will be reduced to two left lanes between the I-405/SR 518 interchange and the Duwamish River Bridge.

The northbound I-5 on-ramps from the southbound I-405 HOV lanes, Southcenter Boulevard, and Interurban Avenue will also close. The SR 599 exit ramp will be reduced to one lane.

A previous closure last weekend also reduced mainline traffic to two right lanes.

I-5 closure 9-28-19

During these back-to-back weekend closures, crews will chip out concrete and put in new steel plates. The repairs take two weekends because the crews can only work on half of an expansion joint at a time

Two years ago, the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) made improvements to the section of northbound I-5 at the Duwamish River in Tukwila. 

As a part of the design, they reused steel plates in four of the interstate's expansion joints, thinking the plates still had some life in them.

In August, one of the joints broke. Crews temporarily fixed the issue, but the lanes will shut down this weekend for a permanent fix. 

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"It's important to finish this work on a weekend when there is less traffic. If we wait, the joint could break at a very inopportune time, such as during a weekday commute," WSDOT said on their blog

WSDOT is asking commuters to be cognizant of the closures and to expect delays. 

They are aware that construction is scheduled on Mariners game days. 

In planning ahead for the lane closures, especially for game day, WSDOT recommends: 

  • Taking Sound Transit Link light rail from Angle Lake or Tukwila – it will drop you off a few blocks from the stadium.
  • Using King County Metro or Sound Transit. Yes, the buses will have to deal with the traffic, but riding a bus allows you to avoid the stress of driving.
  • Carpooling – it's always more fun to go to a game with fellow fans.
  • Taking an alternate route, like I-405 and I-90 or SR 509.

See more traffic updates from KING 5 here.