As minutes tick away before the Sounders take on the Tottenham Hotspurs in a friendly match at CenturyLink Field at 1 p.m., the Interstate 90 lane closure will have its first real test.
So far this morning the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) says drivers have used alternate routes, and backups have not been an issue, but department spokesman Tom Pearce says he is worried that may change.
“The one issue is that people may see this and think ‘oh it is fin’, and they go back to their regular routing,” he said. “Then all the sudden we’ll see the backups start.”
The express lanes are open westbound this afternoon in anticipation of the game — something WSDOT does for all Sounders, Seahawks and Mariners game to ease traffic. However, the lane reduction starts at Bellevue Way Southeast — before the entrance to the express lanes. Pearce explains that drivers have to make it through the choke point before being able to enter the express lanes.
“So it won’t help westbound traffic,” he said.
Here’s a message from Sounders’ players and WSDOT on alternate routes to take for the game: YouTube