Construction to prepare for transit upgrades on Westlake Avenue North will limit hours for Seattle’s South Lake Union streetcar’s operation through March.
Starting Monday, the South Lake Union streetcar will run on much reduced schedule through late March as construction crews work to overhaul how transit travels through the rapidly growing neighborhood.
Lanes and sidewalks on Westlake Avenue North between Mercer Street and Blanchard Street will, at times, be temporarily closed for construction as crews widen sidewalks, install signs, construct bus shelters and mark new transit-only lanes, according to the Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT).
The transit upgrade is part the $930 million Move Seattle transportation package, approved by Seattle voters in November. The Westlake project will extend RapidRide C to South Lake Union, and SDOT says it will improve service on Metro Route 40 and for the streetcar itself.
The streetcar usually runs 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday; 6 a.m. to 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday; and 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Sunday.
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During construction, the streetcar will be shut down from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Thursday and after 9 a.m. Friday. There will be no weekend service.
On weekdays, 2,000 to 2,500 people use the streetcar, according to SDOT spokeswoman Marybeth Turner. Much of the ridership during the weekday-morning commute will still be served, she said. About 850 people use the streetcar on weekend days.
SDOT is still testing the long-delayed First Hill streetcar. Turner said the agency had not set a date for that line to begin service.