Is Seattle Viaduct Replacement Tunnel in Danger?

Seattle, WA--

In the news release, the Washington State Department of Transportation has awarded a contract to Skanska USA Civil of Riverside, Calif., to  replace the southern mile of Seattle's aging Alaskan Way viaduct.

Skanska USA Civil entered the lowest bid for the project at $114.6 million which was 25% less than the bid that the State entered at $152.6 million. The work is scheduled to begin next summer. Fortunately, there are no scheduled detours until early next year, and the work is to be completed in 2013.

This brings up the question of the proposed tunnel that at some points is scheduled to replace the Viaduct. There have been some recent hang ups for the tunnel project, most notably Mayor Mike McGinn threatening to veto the project if the city of Seattle is responsible for cost overruns. With the state rewarding such a large project to a stretch that is scheduled to have a finite life span, one must wonder as to whether or not the proposed tunnel will ever come to fruition.

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