A Major Highway Closure Has Seattle Commuters Bracing For Months Of Brutal Backups09:33
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In this long-exposure photo taken Thursday, Jan. 3, 2019, headlights and taillights of Alaskan Way Viaduct traffic lines the highway ahead of an upcoming closure of the roadway, as the city's sports stadiums are seen in the distance, in Seattle. The double-decker highway along Seattle's waterfront was shut down for good Friday, Jan. 11, ushering in what officials say will be one of the most painful traffic periods in the city's history. (Elaine Thompson/AP)
In this long-exposure photo taken Thursday, Jan. 3, 2019, headlights and taillights of Alaskan Way Viaduct traffic lines the highway ahead of an upcoming closure of the roadway, as the city's sports stadiums are seen in the distance, in Seattle. The double-decker highway along Seattle's waterfront was shut down for good Friday, Jan. 11, ushering in what officials say will be one of the most painful traffic periods in the city's history. (Elaine Thompson/AP)

Commuters in Seattle are bracing for weeks of traffic headaches as the city begins a six-month overhaul of the 66-year-old Alaskan Way Viaduct. The 2.2 miles of elevated highway, which flows into downtown, was compromised by a massive earthquake in 2001. State officials say the viaduct is safe for travel, but remains vulnerable.

Here & Now's Robin Young speaks with Mark Hallenbeck of the Washington State Transportation Center about the "squeeze" and locals' feelings about the change.

This segment aired on January 21, 2019.

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