December 17th, 2013 by UWBG Communication Staff
Foster Island Landscaping – Dec. 2013 preliminary fieldwork
What is the work and why is it being done?
- Crews will conduct archeological evaluations on Foster Island in the Washington Park Arboretum to prepare for landscaping improvements that will be implemented as a part of the SR 520, I-5 to Medina: Bridge Replacement and HOV Project.
- Landscaping improvements will include planting native plants in the area.
- WSDOT is assisting with landscape improvements in coordination with the Arboretum as part of a mitigation plan for effects to Foster Island developed in compliance with Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act.
- This work is necessary so crews can better understand sediment profiles that will help inform additional archeological investigations in spring 2014 for the proposed landscaping improvements.
How will the work be done and what will I see?
- Work is planned for Dec. 18, 2013. In the event of poor weather conditions, work could be delayed up until Jan. 31, 2013.
- Crews of approximately three people will be on site using small diameter hand augers to examine soil samples. A maximum of ten auger test bores will be placed.
- This fieldwork will be completed within one day.
- No trail closures or other public space closures will be required to perform this work.
- Crews will re-fill the sample areas and replace sod at the auger locations.
What are the next steps?
- The next phase of archaeological work required for the proposed landscaping treatments is planned for spring 2014. Crews will fence off work areas during this time.
Who can I contact for more information?
- SR 520 contact information:
- 24-hour construction hotline: 206-708-4657
April 8th, 2013 by UWBG Communication Staff
Beginning as soon as the week of April 15, WSDOT will perform geotechnical investigations in the Union Bay Natural Area (UBNA). Crews will be taking soil samples and installing monitoring well equipment in and around the parking area to study soil and groundwater conditions. The information gathered helps us better understand the composition and characteristics of the ground in this area to prepare for future wetland mitigation work.
What can you expect?
- Monitoring well installation will begin as soon as April 15, 2013, and last up to one week. The wells will be in place through summer 2014.
- Work will occur on weekdays between 7 a.m.and 6 p.m.
- The primary impact will be temporarily reduced parking (up to four spaces per well) during drilling and monitoring well installation.
More information: April 2013 SR520_UBNA_Fieldwork_Flyer
Call WA DOT at:
SR 520 Fieldwork Hotline: 206-708-4657
Join the e-mail update list by sending a message to:
August 3rd, 2012 by Tech Librarian, Tracy Mehlin
The Washington State Department of Transportation will start geotechnical and cultural field studies at the Washington Park Arboretum near the location of the future 520 bridge on August 6, 2012.
Complete information can be found at the WSDOT 520 Project webpage.
Cultural Resources Fields Study Factsheet
Geotechnical Drilling Field Study Factsheet
December 23rd, 2010 by Tech Librarian, Tracy Mehlin
In the 2010 legislative session, a bill was introduced that required the Washington State Department of Transportation, in its efforts to push forward the 520 bridge renovation and replacement, to focus on minimizing and addressing potential impacts to the Washington Park Arboretum. A group representing the Arboretum Botanical Garden Committee, which advises the University of Washington, City of Seattle and The Arboretum Foundation on the management and stewardship of the Washington Park Arboretum, worked with WSDOT on addressing issues outlined in ESSB 6392. Based upon this discussion, WSDOT issued a report to the Governor. This was a very important document as it acknowledges both historical and future impacts. Representing the University of Washington were Theresa Doherty and Fred Hoyt, the City: Barbara Wright, Parks and Recreation: Donald Harris and Michael Shiosaki and the Arboretum Foundation: Paige Miller (with Nancy Belcher providing technical assistance).
Washington Park Mitigation Plan, December 22, 2010
October 26th, 2010 by Tech Librarian, Tracy Mehlin
WSDOT’s SR 520, I-5 to Medina Project: Section 6(f) Environmental Evaluation comment period will be ending on Wednesday, December 8, 2010
The preferred alternative selected for the SR 520, I-5 to Medina: Bridge Replacement and HOV Project will convert properties protected by the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) Act of 1965. The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) and the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) have prepared a Section 6(f) Environmental Evaluation in accordance with the LWCF Act Section 6(f)(3). This document evaluates the effects of converting recreational properties (e.g., parks) protected by Section 6(f) to non-recreational use and replacing them with property of at least equal fair market value and of reasonably equivalent usefulness and location. The Section 6(f) protected properties proposed for conversion are portions of the Ship Canal Waterside and Arboretum Waterfront Trail complex, and portions of two associated parks, East Montlake Park and the Washington Park Arboretum. The Section 6(f) Environmental Evaluation will be available for a 30-day public comment period beginning in early November 2010.
Please check back in early November for a link to the document and comment form. For more information on the SR 520 Bridge Replacement and HOV Program, please visit the project website at
July 28th, 2010 by Tech Librarian, Tracy Mehlin
The Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) is conducting a cultural resources study on Foster Island as part of the I-5 to Medina: Bridge Replacement and HOV Project. This important safety and mobility project will build a safer floating bridge and give new options to people crossing Lake Washington.
Foster Island Study Fact Sheet
November 19th, 2009 by UWBG Communication Staff
The Arboretum and Botanical Garden Committee has issued guiding principles for the Washington State Department of Transportation project of replacing the State Route 520 floating bridge.
For complete information on the project and to make a comment go to the WADOT website for SR 520.