Hahahahaha: Seattle Waterfront tunnel opening delayed 20 months

KOMO: A new highway tunnel through downtown Seattle won’t be open until August 2017, about 20 months behind schedule, state transportation officials said Monday. The contractor, Seattle Tunnel Partners, said it expects to resume tunneling in April.
The massive tunnel-boring machine stopped work on the 2-mile tunnel in December 2013 after going about 1,000 feet, and the massive machine that’s stuck underground needs repairs before drilling can resume.
The contractor and state officials say they can’t nail down an exact completion date until tunneling resumes.
“Schedule is very important to us,” Matt Preedy with the Department of Transportation said in a call with reporters. “At the end of the day, this is a safety job.” He added, “The state fully intends to stay the course and complete this job.”
“We still have plans to mitigate that delay,” Chris Dixon, project manager at Seattle Tunnel Partners, said Monday of the delayed completion date. But that largely depends on when digging happens, when it is complete, and what work remains with the overall project at that time, Dixon said.
The August 2017 date is outlined in a monthly schedule the contractor provides to the transportation agency, and it could change again, Preedy said. That date is also nearly a year later than what the contractor had targeted when the tunnel-boring machine got stuck.
The project hit another obstacle last month when work temporarily stopped so engineers could investigate ground settlement around the access pit being dug to reach and replace the damaged head of the boring machine.
Workers have been “de-watering” to reduce pressure from underneath and on the sides of the pit. Crews resumed excavation last week, and transportation officials said Monday that settlement levels near the access pit has remained stable since late last month. While some ground settlement is to be expected, “the settlement measured is greater and farther reaching than anticipated,” the agency said Monday.
Crews doing building surveys since early December “found some minor cosmetic damage in a handful of buildings, but no structural damage has been discovered,” the agency said.
The $2 billion tunnel is designed to replace the aging Alaskan Way Viaduct that was damaged in a 2001 earthquake.
Poor Washington tax payers, funding another ill-conceived project. If you think boring a tunnel through landfill is a good idea, you probably also approved of the $124.7 million Seattle Monorail to nowhere. Yet Washington liberals are a consistent bunch.

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The lack of common sense in our attempts to show our human intellectual greatness as we deal with comfort in daily existence is astounding. Just another example, why build nuclear power plants in known earthquake zones? (Why build nuclear power plants at all? Why not replace fluoride in our drinking water and toothpaste with radioactive waste while we are at it?)

Auntie Lulu
Auntie Lulu

I wonder how the owners of the buildings that had suffered “cosmetic damage” feel right about now? I personally would not be jumpin’ for joy, even if the project was picking up the tab to repair the damage–I jwould be wondering . . . what’s coming next??? And why are you subjecting me to any damage to my personal property if this is a safe project!!!


Who was the idiot that permitted them to drill through a landfill?
LOL – No wonder Bertha balked.


Gee-is it possible that this is just a BAD IDEA? Maybe I’m wrong,but don’t GOOD IDEAS usually go a lot smoother than this They MAY have to hire some Conservatives to check their designs and correct whatever screw-ups are causing all the problems.


Seattle’s steepest hills were re-graded and lopped off by city engineers in the 1880s so that the city could expand northward. In all, 16 million cubic yards of earth and debris were sluiced down onto the tideflats. By 1910 the downtown area was level enough for automobile traffic. Seattle’s precious $4 billion tunnel project will go right through that debris field, built on an old salt marsh with no bedrock beneath it to support a tunnel. I feel sorry for whoever happens to be in there when the next earthquake hits, as it will be the largest tunnel disaster in… Read more »