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Eastlake Layover Facility

Helping our buses stay on time

Currently, some buses lay over along Eastlake Avenue E between trips. But with growing demand for other street uses, such as pedestrian access and bike lanes—and the desire to provide bus operators a safe location to take required rest breaks, the construction of a layover facility is now underway.

What's happening now

Work along Eastlake Avenue E continues to take place which includes curb and roadway restoration and structural steel assembly. Signal and illumination work continue at street intersections on the west side of Eastlake Ave E.

Effects on the area

  • On-street parking will continue to not be available on the west side of Eastlake Avenue E between Roy and Harrison streets
  • Some traffic congestion is anticipated but travel lanes on both sides of Eastlake Ave E will remain open
  • Access to businesses and residential buildings will be maintained

What to expect during construction work

Construction is expected to continue through the summer. Typical work week hours are Monday through Friday, 7 am to 4 pm. Construction schedules may shift due to inclement weather, material shipment delays or other unforeseen circumstances. Some nighttime and weekend work may be required.

  • Temporary parking restrictions
  • Periodic lane closures
  • Flaggers to direct traffic around the work areas
  • Detours for people walking, rolling, and biking
  • Construction staging and parking impacts near the construction site
  • Some sidewalk, intersection and lane closures
  • Typical construction impacts, such as noise, truck activity and dust and debris

We will provide notifications to businesses and residents ahead of construction activities in the area.

Safety reminder

When driving, biking and rolling around the construction of the new Metro layover facility, be aware of the work being done. Work sites can change daily—please pay attention to traffic patterns and be aware of all activities taking place around you, including other drivers and people who may be walking, biking, or rolling in the area.

Construction for this project will continue through summer 2024 which means more traffic through this corridor. Follow all work crew instructions and read posted signs. Traffic cones, high-visibility barrels, and other warning signs help people move safely through work zones. Flaggers are there for your safety and the safety of workers on-site.

Please be attentive, careful and courteous in the construction zone. Everyone working in the public right–of–way deserves to get home safely at the end of each workday.

  • Construction: Spring 2023 to Summer 2024
  • Open for bus service: Summer 2024

Construction for the Eastlake Layover Facility project is expected to continue through the summer. Please sign up for updates to stay informed on construction activities for this project.

We are also coordinating with our partners at the Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT), to minimize impacts on concurrent construction work—you can visit their project webpage to learn more.

There will be several roadway changes for drivers, pedestrians and cyclists once the project is complete.

  • There will be impacts to some on-street parking stalls on the west side of Eastlake Avenue East. Parking will be:
    • removed between Roy and Mercer streets
    • reduced to 6 stalls between Mercer and Republican streets
    • removed between Harrison and Thomas streets
    • restricted to weekend-only between Thomas and John streets
  • Permanent lane reductions – from 4 to 2 lanes – between Roy and Stewart streets.
  • A shared-use path on the east side of Eastlake Avenue East between Roy and Mercer streets.
  • Replacement of the northbound right-turn slip lane to Lakeview Boulevard East with a right-turn-only lane at Roy Street.
  • New or improved pedestrian crossings.
  • New traffic signal installation at the Eastlake Avenue East and Republican Street intersection.
  • Removal of the existing bus stop at Mercer Street and Eastlake Avenue East. An alternative stop will be Route 70 at Mercer Street and Fairview Avenue. Please review Route 70's schedule for more information.

Community engagement

We conducted an initial phase of public outreach between November 2017 and January 2018 to get feedback on the design of the facility. We conducted a second phase of public outreach in late 2019 to introduce the updated designs at the 60% milestone and report back on how community input influenced specific elements of the design.

From input received through stakeholder meetings, door-to-door outreach, and an online open house with survey, several key themes emerged.

People told us they would prefer bright, colorful concrete and structures that stand out rather than blend in. They would also prefer vegetation and natural, plant-based screening over physical barriers or walls that are textured or painted. This feedback informed the design you see today.

In general, for any future layover projects, people told us it’s important that Metro design facilities that are safe and secure, as well as pedestrian- and bike-friendly. Off-street layover facilities should provide comfort for bus operators, fit in with their surrounding neighborhoods, and minimize noise and environmental pollution and congestion. People cited landscaping, lighting, and screening as the most important features for future off-street layover facilities.

More detail about the public outreach process and what we heard is available in the Final Design Outreach Report.

Environmental review process

Metro completed environmental review under the State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA) for the Eastlake Layover Facility. After completing a SEPA checklist, a Determination of Non-Significance (DNS) was issued on Dec. 14, 2018. The DNS was published in the Seattle Times and mailed to property owners within 500 feet of the proposed facility. The 14-day public comment period ended at 5 p.m. on Dec. 28, 2018.


FAQ

A layover facility is a space where King County Metro bus operators can take their mandated rest breaks to help them stay alert. When complete, the Eastlake Layover Facility will accommodate 11 bus layover spaces (six off-street and five on-street) and provide a space for bus operators to take breaks and access safe restroom facilities. This facility will not be open to the public or transit riders.

A layover facility is important because it allows buses to start their next trip on time and provides a safe place for King County Metro bus operators to take their mandated rest breaks to help keep them alert while on the road.

  • Keeps buses on schedule
  • Frees up street space for other uses
  • Moves “out of service” buses off-street instead of taking valuable curb space
  • Provides safe and reliable restrooms and break areas for bus operators

Once the construction of the layover facility is completed, there will be roadway changes to Eastlake Ave East. Some of these changes include:

  • Shared-use path on the east side of Eastlake Ave East between Roy Street and Mercer Street
  • New or improved pedestrian crossings
  • New traffic signal at Eastlake Ave E and Republican Street
  • Permanent lane reductions from four to two lanes between Roy and Stewart Streets
  • Reduced and restricted parking in some areas
  • Removal of a bus stop at Mercer Street and Eastlake Ave E
  • New protected bike lanes on the east and west sides of Eastlake Ave E between Fairview Ave and Stewart Street

Improvements for pedestrians and cyclists will include a shared-use path on the east side of Eastlake Ave E between Roy St and Mercer St and new protected bike lanes on the east and west sides of Eastlake Ave E between Fairview Ave N and Stewart St.

Metro is working in partnership with the Seattle Department of Transportation’s Eastlake Layover Facility Mobility Improvements Project to construct protected bike lanes. SDOT will install new protected bike lanes on the east and west side of Eastlake Ave E between Fairview Ave N to Roy Street.

Please contact Darrell Bulmer with the Seattle Department of Transportation via email at darrell.bulmer@seattle.gov or by phone at 206-375-5636 for more information.

Parking will be reduced or restricted on some sections of Eastlake Ave E.

On-street parking stalls on the west side of the roadway will be:

  • removed between Roy and Mercer streets
  • reduced to six stalls between Mercer and Republican streets
  • removed between Harrison and Thomas streets
  • restricted to weekend-only between Thomas and John streets

Access to businesses and residential buildings will be maintained during construction. We are reaching out to neighbors, businesses, and local community organizations in advance of construction near them to share when and where work will happen, as well as what impacts to expect.

Yes, load zones will also be affected but reinstated after construction is complete. Feel free to contact us if you have questions.

Yes, driveway restrictions will be needed for paving activities which are typically short term. Our team will inform residents and businesses in the area when driveway restrictions will take place.

Please visit the Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) Permits and Services website for more information on Restricted Parking Zone (RPZ) Permits. You can also contact SDOT by email rpzinfo@seattle.gov.

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