Bellevue Braids -- the Interstate 405 project that eliminates several awkward traffic merges -- is now open for traffic on a new onramp linking Interstate 405 and eastbound State Route 520.
The new onramp that opened Tuesday connects Interstate 405 to eastbound State Route 520 while bypassing the 124th Avenue Northeast exit on 520.
Drivers on northbound I-405 who want to exit at 124th Avenue Northeast on SR-520 will use the old route. Drivers who want to head toward Redmond should take the new onramp, which merges onto 520 after 124th Avenue Northeast.
This is the same project that created the new ramp to SR 520 from Northeast 10th Street, eliminated the connection to SR 520 from Northeast 8th Street, and created a new I-405 to SR 520 link that moved the interchange about a half mile south of where it was.
Before, merging traffic converged around the I-405 and SR 520 interchange, causing "traffic weaves" .
The $107.5 million project included $80 million of American Recovery and Reinvestment Act money, according to the the Washington State Department of Transportation.
The project included a a new State Route 520 onramp from Northeast 10th Street in Bellevue, and a with enough height to allow the new ramps to pass underneath.
The final lane on the Northeast 12th Street Bridge is expected to be open to traffic next month, according to the Washington State Department of Transportation.
Washington State Department of Transportation officials and guests on hand of the Tuesday's opening of the new onramp included Bellevue Deputy Mayor Jennifer Robertson and State Reps. Judy Clibborn (D-Mercer Island) and Ross Hunter (D-Medina).