Preliminary construction begins on Coal Creek Parkway culvert

April 23, 2013

By Christina Corrales-Toy

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NEW — 12:10 p.m. April 23, 2013

Preliminary work on a city of Bellevue project to replace an aging culvert underneath Coal Creek Parkway is set to start this week, beginning with off-peak lane closures.

The Bellevue portion of Coal Creek Parkway between Southeast 60th Street and Forest Drive will be reduced to one lane in each direction from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m., Sunday through Thursday, as Puget Sound Energy utility crews complete work.

The work began the week of April 22 and is expected to continue for about two weeks, according to the city of Bellevue website. Initial work is being done at night to minimize impacts to drivers. All four lanes will be open during the day, until bridge construction begins at the end of May.

In late May, the bridge contractor will begin work, and a portion of Coal Creek Parkway will be reduced to one lane in each direction for 24 hours a day until December.

The city of Newcastle is doing all it can to mitigate the bottleneck that the all-day closure is expected to cause, including changing the timing of some traffic signals. Ultimately, though, drivers are encouraged to use alternate routes, especially during the morning and evening commutes.

Public Works Director Mark Rigos suggests that residents use east to west routes, such as Southeast 88th Place or Newcastle Way to get to Interstate 405. Drivers could also travel south down Coal Creek Parkway toward Northeast Sunset Boulevard in Renton to reach the freeway. In Bellevue, Rigos suggests commuters use Southeast 60th Street through the Newport Hills community, or Forest Drive to avoid the construction.

If possible, drivers are also encouraged to carpool or alter their commute so that it coincides with off-peak travel hours, Rigos said.

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