On Tuesday evening, January 13, a roomful of 50+ people at the Meadowbrook Community Center listened intently as Seattle Public Utilities Project Engineer Jason Sharpley reviewed the work that was done at The Confluence from May to December of 2014. Of primary concern was the question, when will the road open again?
To finish the concrete and road-building on 35th Ave NE at NE 107th Street, workers need two more days with NO rain, and with temperatures at 45 degrees or above. One day, Wednesday January 14, is predicted to have these ideal conditions. Rain is predicted for the following days. Whenever another clear day occurs, then the road work can be finished. Therefore, the earliest date of road opening will be sometime during the week of January 19th, 2015, if conditions are favorable.
Project Engineer Jason Sharpley discussed the timeline and the work that has been successfully accomplished. Delays and setbacks occurred with summer storms which flooded the project site. In December 2014, freezing temperatures slowed the time needed for concrete to set.
A new bridge structure has been built for 35th Ave NE at NE 107th Street, spanning the South Branch of Thornton Creek which has been “daylighted” to flow under the road. The South Branch flows eastward into a newly created floodplain area, the site of The Confluence of the North and South Branches of Thornton Creek. The creek flows into Meadowbrook Pond, a Seattle Public Utilities project created in 1996-98 for flood control and filtration of the water. The pond is also a wonderful urban amenity with habitat for wildlife.