Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Are we there yet? No. Are we there yet? No. Are we...

... there yet? No, but we're getting closer.

We've been swamped of late with people asking us when we're going to open. Exactly. To the day. To the hour, even.

The stream of questions is understandable. People are getting anxious to reclaim their bridge and, in some cases, their lives as they shave hours off their commutes and travels to and from the Olympic Peninsula.

For the past few years, we expected to deliver the new bridge and two trusses in six weeks. Mother Nature threw a tantrum for a few days, made a mess, put us behind schedule, and we got stuck cleaning up. More than three days were added to the schedule due to weather delays.

It was ShamWow time. Our construction crews and team members made us proud as they took advantage of the weather, bringing the east and west draw spans together for the first time since May 1, placing transition span and roadway spans and completing Q/R pontoon joint grouting.

Doing so, they cleaned a week off extended schedule. Putting the expected reopening date at June 8. They soaked up three more days like cola off a shag carpet. Putting their collective nose to the grindstone and the expected reopening date at June 5.

So, what's the exact date now? Our latest schedule shows us reopening during the first week of June. Does this mean June 1? No. June 2? No. June 3? No, it means the first week of June.

We're not trying to be difficult here. Just accurate. Very accurate. So accurate that when we have the definite opening date, we'll be as sure as we can be that the date will stick. We'll have a better idea about where we stand this Friday, May 29.

Thanks for staying with us. And rest assured that we'll let you know the opening date as soon as we can.

Until then, thank you. We deeply appreciate your patience, questions and comments. Your participation and support has been astounding. Keep it up, just a few more days to go.

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

Thank you for updating us!! I think my granchild due May 17th is waiting for the bridge. For his mother's sake I hope not...but it will be easier to see them after they go home from the hospital as they live in Mt Lake Terrace.

John said...

We will open no bridge before its time. For pretty much the same reason as not shipping wine early.

I expected less than 6 weeks (mostly because the discussion was of a 5 week closure until some time around the time of the "Port Angeles problem", and partly because we saw how good the contractor is at this stuff with the approach roadways).

But I didn't expect this much less than 6 weeks (adjusted to 6 1/2 by the early weather).

The thing now is to avoid rushing too much. Rushing breaks things and hurts people--and above all we don't want people hurt. Not hurting people is more important than a few hours earlier on the opening (I say from Port Ludlow).

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the updates. Given how much the bridge means I am very glad you are keeping us informed. Other projects around the state could learn from this. Keep up the good work.

Anonymous said...

Hi Joe,

Will you all be putting a video of up on the new bridge draw span in action. I'm sure there are some other technical nuts that would like to see that.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for all the great work.

Anonymous said...

Your blog has not only been informative, it's been highly entertaining, too! May the bridge be as strong as your posts have been enlightening and funny. Looking forward to the bridge reopening. My husband actually misses the daily commute from Port Townsend to Lake Union! Good luck and fair weather to you and the crew.

Anonymous said...

are we there yet ?! what an entertaining update, thank you !

irwinj@wsdot.wa.gov said...

Video of the new draw span extending and retracting has been shot we're in the process of putting it together. Once it's done, we'll post it for all to enjoy.

Anonymous said...

My husband and I have been following this project since it started and we have been so very impressed by the work that this crew has done. We are amazed by how fast it has happened. When you really think about it, waiting this amount of time isn't that bad for a quality job and a new bridge.

My sister's family lives on the other side of that bridge and I can't wait to travel over it and see them! Thank you for a Great Job!

P.S.
I too can't wait to see the video of the new draw span opening!

Anonymous said...

Are you surprised that people are asking you questions that is your job to answer? It is important to know when we will be able to drive to work!

Anonymous said...

"The stream of questions is understandable. People are getting anxious to reclaim their bridge and, in some cases, their lives as they shave hours off their commutes and travels to and from the Olympic Peninsula."

Thank you for understanding our need to know, and for the great work keeping us updated, as well as for all the years of work leading up to the opening (and beyond)!

Rob said...

hello since the bridge was closed i decided to take time off of work,instead of the headaches commuting by foot ferry than by bus to bainbridge island,i figured it would be a good time to stay home and get things done here....your blogs are very good enjoyed them very much....and the crew did a fantastic job on that bridge ."well done guys"....Rob From Quil....oh thanks for the time off work..