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Alaskan Way Viaduct

9 Fun Facts about the Deconstruction

Narrating the history and current ongoings of the waterfront is kind of our thing, so these last few months we've been studying up on our viaduct knowledge. Below are 9 interesting facts we uncovered while researching the demolition process. Hop on a Harbor Cruise before June 1 to learn more and wave farewell!

  1. The total mass of the Alaskan Way Viaduct is 112,000 tons.
  2. 150 tons of steel used to brace the viaduct following the 2001 Nisqually Earthquake will be recycled.
  3. Deconstruction is planned to take approximately 5 1/2 months, working on three to five sections at a time.
  4. The project is contracted to Kiewit Construction for a cool $40 million.
  5. The largest machine used is measured at 50 meters tall, delivered in pieces by 7 trucks and assembled onsite. It crunches and munches the concrete into rubble.
  6. Jack hammering during the demo process causes some dust. Water is sprayed above the demolition to avoid air contamination as crews work.
  7. The resulting silty wastewater is processed onsite. It's pumped into settling tanks, then the water on top is released into the county sewer system.
  8. Segments of rubble the size of basketballs will be trucked south to Terminal 25, processed, and reduced to less than 3 inches in diameter.
  9. After it's pulverized into 3-inch pieces, the rubble is deposited within the Battery Street Tunnel up to 10 feet high. Concrete will be lightly poured on top.

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Visit the Viaduct Schedule to see the most up to date tracking of the demolition.
Sources:,,, Kiewit Construction