The I-405/SR 167 Interchange Direct Connector in Renton is opening to traffic as early as next week

By Victoria Miller

Attention I-405/SR 167 corridor drivers! We are wrapping up work on the I-405/SR 167 Interchange Direct Connector Project and the flyover ramp will be open to traffic as early as the afternoon of Tuesday, Feb. 19.

Yes, you read that correctly! The construction you have seen over the past two years at this busy interchange is nearing its end.

The Direct Connector project broke ground in September 2016 and was originally scheduled to open to traffic in spring 2019. “With the savings from our previous I-405 corridor projects, we were able to advance design engineering and purchase the right of way necessary to start construction as soon as we received funding from the Connecting Washington funding package,” said I-405/SR 167 Program Administrator Kim Henry. “Thanks to drivers’ patience and the project team’s hard work, we are pleased to complete this improvement four months ahead of schedule.”
The groundbreaking ceremony for the I-405/SR 167 Interchange Direct Connector Project was held on Sept. 29, 2016.

The 2015 Connecting Washington funding package is a $16 billion multimodal investment to enhance the statewide transportation system and maintain critical infrastructure.

The Direct Connector is the first phase of the upcoming I-405 Renton to Bellevue Widening and Express Toll Lanes Project, which will help to improve traffic operations throughout the corridor. The Renton to Bellevue project will add an additional lane in each direction of I-405 between Renton and Bellevue, rebuild several interchanges and build infrastructure for Sound Transit’s Bus Rapid Transit system. The work also makes additional improvements such as southbound auxiliary lanes from I-90 to Lake Washington Boulevard Southeast in Newcastle, and from Northeast 44th Street to Northeast 30th Street in Renton. The Renton to Bellevue project encompasses the stretch of roadway that will complete a 40-mile express toll lanes system between the Pierce County line on SR 167 and I-5 in Lynnwood. The Direct Connector is the critical component in connecting the High Occupancy Toll lanes on SR 167 to the future express toll lanes on I-405.

Until the Renton to Bellevue project is complete, the new 1,500-foot-long flyover ramp will serve carpools from northbound SR 167 to northbound I-405, and carpools from southbound I-405 to southbound SR 167. The ramp will operate as a 2+ high occupancy vehicle lane from 5 a.m. to 7 p.m. every day, allowing single occupancy vehicles to use the ramp outside of these hours. To learn more about the HOV systems and carpool rules, visit our HOV lanes page.
Looking north on SR 167 in May 2018, crews remove formwork from two crossbeams for the future flyover ramp.

We will be holding a ribbon-cutting on Feb. 19, the earliest day we plan for the ramp to open to traffic. Once the orange traffic barrels leading up to the base of each on-ramp are gone, the ramp will be ready to use! However, due to the current weather forecast, we will provide an update if conditions require rescheduling opening the ramp to traffic.

While we plan for the I-405/SR 167 Interchange Direct Connector flyover ramp to be operationally ready as early as next week, please keep in mind there will still be some overnight closures as the project team completes paving work into the spring.
As early as next week, Tuesday, Feb. 19, the I-405/SR 167 Interchange Direct Connector will open to traffic, connecting the HOT lanes on SR 167 to the HOV lanes on I-405.

To stay up to date on the latest construction closure information for the project, please visit the I-405 Construction Updates page and the King County Construction Updates page.


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