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How’s traffic in Seattle’s SR 99 tunnel?

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By Laura Newborn

A little more than two months ago, the new SR 99 tunnel under downtown Seattle opened in the middle of a series of record-breaking snowstorms. The weather, combined with final SR 99 off-ramp construction, made it hard to know what kind of a traffic story was emerging in this new SR 99 corridor. Now that we have a few more weeks of data under our belt, we are starting to get a better picture of how many drivers are using the tunnel. During this toll-free time, what are we seeing?

Weekly tunnel use
Tunnel usage is increasing over time. We are now measuring almost 500,000 trips each week (Monday-Sunday).

Daily tunnel use
The tunnel is seeing more than 70,000 daily trips Monday-Friday. The busiest days so far are Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays.

Comparing the tunnel to the Alaskan Way Viaduct
Comparing the new tunnel's usage to usage of the Alaskan Way Viaduct is not an ‘apples-to-apples' comparison as the tunnel ramps are in different locations than the viaduct'…