Traffic will have a bit more room to roam through the Renton S-curves starting Tuesday afternoon, when the state Department of Transportation...

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Traffic will have a bit more room to roam through the Renton S-curves starting Tuesday afternoon, when the state Department of Transportation opens new merge-exit lanes in both directions.

The $176 million project, funded mainly by gas taxes, adds access points in one of the state’s most congested places.

Drivers who turn from Highway 167 onto northbound Interstate 405 will get a new right lane as far as the Maple Valley highway, instead of having to merge instantly into the mainline. A new onramp has also been built from Talbot Road into the new lane.

Southbound, a new I-405 lane begins at the Maple Valley Highway with an exit at a new Talbot Road ramp, before the lane ends at the Highway 167 exit.

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An opening ceremony is at 1:30 p.m. Tuesday.

More than 140,000 vehicles per weekday pass through the S-curves, where until now the freeway had two general lanes and one carpool lane each way.