Seattle's Queen Anne Neighborhood News Blog


Traffic is going to snarl our streets this weekend

March 27th, 2015 by Laura Fonda

Reddit Traffic MapRemember the traffic nightmare from the overturned fish truck on 99 this past Tuesday? All routes on the traffic maps were red. (See a Redditor’s map of Tuesday’s carmageddon to the right).

Same with last Friday’s NCAA tournament at Key Arena – red everywhere on the map around Queen Anne, SLU, and downtown. Well, get ready, here we go again.

Emerald City Comicon starts today and runs through the weekend. It’s a pretty big deal and draws 20,000 visitors each day to the Washington State Convention Center. There’s also a Professional Bull Riding event at Key Arena tonight (Friday) and tomorrow evening – 6,000 people attending each event.

For comparison, last week’s NCAA games drew 14,000 people per game and traffic was awful. Yet, somehow, the traffic overlords decided this weekend was a good weekend to have this slew of road closures:

March 27-March 30: Aurora Lane Closures between Valley & Highland
7pm Friday, March 27 to 5am Monday, March 30: northbound and southbound lane closures on Aurora between Valley and Highland

March 28-30: SR99 Viaduct closed for semi-annual inspection
10pm Friday, March 27 to 5am Monday: closed between the Battery St Tunnel and Valley St
Sunday, March 29: Closed between Spokane St and Battery St Tunnel

March 28-29: Fremont Bridge full closure
Midnight – 7am Saturday, March 28 and Sunday, March 29, bridge will be closed to traffic. Pedestrians and bicycles will be allowed 5 minute long crossing periods at 1:20am and 2:20am.

March 27-30: Westbound I-90 Detour
11pm Friday to 5am Monday, all westbound I-90 traffic between Bellevue Way and Rainier Ave S will be routed to the express lanes.

Get ready, the traffic will spill over into the neighborhood, and we’ll all essentially be trapped for the weekend (unless you want to fight the traffic). Pack your patience, and watch out for drivers trying to find their way through our streets as they avoid road closures and traffic backups.

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March Madness takes over Key Arena starting Friday

March 19th, 2015 by Laura Fonda

Key Arena NCAAThis year, Key Arena is hosting the 2015 NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Championship second and third rounds (you can check out their new floor decor to the right).

That means March Madness comes to Seattle, and to our Lower Queen Anne streets. 14,000 people are expected at each game, so prepare for traffic and parking challenges.

The games kick off tomorrow, Friday, March 20th. Four games are scheduled for Friday, two for Sunday (times TBD for those games):

Friday, March 20

  • Northern Iowa vs. Wyoming at 10:40am
  • Louisville vs. UC Irvine at 1:10pm
  • Iowa vs. Davidson at 4:20pm
  • Gonzaga vs. North Dakota State at 6:50pm

Sunday, March 22

  • Winner Game 1 vs. Winner Game 2
  • Winner Game 3 vs. Winner Game 4

Keep in mind that while these games will snarl traffic, they also bring in business. Key Arena gets a big nod, and local restaurants will surely benefit too. Just plan your travels accordingly, and get ready for March Madness!

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Traffic Alert: Starbucks shareholder meeting at McCaw Hall on Wednesday morning

March 17th, 2015 by Laura Fonda

Mercer St GarageHeads up for traffic impacts tomorrow morning around Lower Queen Anne. The Starbucks Annual Shareholders Meeting is being held at McCaw Hall on Wednesday, March 18th from 10am to noon.

Doors will open at 8am, so expect traffic volumes to be higher than usual heading into and around Lower Queen Anne. Plus, traffic heading out of our neighborhood around noon-2pm.

Starbucks expects approximately 2,500 people to attend the meeting. Plan ahead if your commute takes you by McCaw Hall or the garage across the street (Starbucks is advising shareholders use the Mercer Street Garage for parking).

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Weekend Roundup – On & Around Queen Anne

August 21st, 2014 by Laura Fonda

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First and foremost, remember that 99/Aurora is closed from Friday night through Wednesday morning. It will be a significant traffic impact – roads and busses will be affected, and expect traffic to spill onto Queen Anne. A great excuse to stick around Queen Anne this weekend, where there are plenty of free events to go around.

If you have anything to submit to the Weekend Roundup, email us. You can also add your event to our calendar.


Multi-Day Events

Friday, August 22

Saturday, August 23

Sunday, August 24

Have an event that you would like us to report on? Drop us an email at

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Weekend Roundup – On & Around Queen Anne

August 7th, 2014 by Laura Fonda

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Back to a packed summer weekend of events! Heads up that Lady Gaga will be at Key Arena tomorrow (Friday) night, with an expected crowd of 13,000 fans. And, if the Seahawks pre-season game tonight isn’t enough for sports fans, take your pick: Mariners, Sounders, Rat City Roller Girls, Reign, and the Storm are all playing at home this weekend. Plus, lots of free events and celebrations enjoy!

If you have anything to submit to the Weekend Roundup, email us. You can also add your event to our calendar.


  • 520 Bridge: closed 11pm Friday, Aug 8 to 5am Monday, Aug 11

Multi-Day Events

Friday, August 8

Saturday, August 9

Sunday, August 10

Have an event that you would like us to report on? Drop us an email at

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Protest at Gates Foundation today during evening rush hour

June 26th, 2014 by Laura Fonda

This evening, the Mercer commute is going to get a bit more difficult. A protest by about 300 teachers is expected to make its way from Westlake at 5pm to the Gates Foundation. Arrival at the corner of 5th Ave N and Mercer St is estimated at 5:45pm. The group will be there until 7pm.

Map Gates ProtestHere are some details from our news partner, The Seattle Times:

The event begins with a rally at 5 p.m. at Westlake Park, followed by a march to the foundation’s offices at the corner of Fifth Avenue North and Mercer Street at 5:45 p.m. Featured speakers include Seattle City Councilmember Kshama Sawant; University of Washington, Bothell education professor Wayne Au; and Anthony Cody, a former California teacher and blogger for the newsweekly Education Week.

It’s expected to finish by 7 p.m.

City officials expect significant congestion in the area and are urging drivers to plan accordingly.

Heads up, plan ahead, leave early, etc.

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Weekend Roundup – On & Around Queen Anne

June 19th, 2014 by Laura Fonda

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Summer is one of the busiest times for events and festivals, so we’re reviving the Weekend Roundup. Curious as to why we took a hiatus? We migrated to a new calendar, and no longer get push notifications, so the Weekend Roundup is very much a manual exercise.

However, if you have anything to submit to the Weekend Roundup, email us. You can also add your event to our new calendar. (You’ll be asked to sign up with for an account first.)

Now, on to the warning about travel on and around Queen Anne… This weekend brings the Fremont Fair to our north and the Rock’n’Roll Marathon to the base of Queen Anne Hill. The race begins and ends near the Seattle Center, so be prepared for many road closures that’ll add to the Mercer/Roy confusion.

Consider walking to your destination this Saturday.


  • Northbound 99: closed between the West Seattle Freeway and the Battery St. Tunnel Friday night to Monday morning
  • 520 bridge: fully closed, Friday night to Monday morning
  • Rock N Roll Marathon & Half Marathon, 7am-6pm, begins & ends at Seattle Center – see course map for traffic impacts. Streets near the Seattle Center, such as Mercer Street and 5th Ave N, will be closed from 2am Saturday morning through Saturday afternoon

Multi-Day Events:

Friday, June 20

Saturday, June 21

Sunday, June 22

Have an event that you would like us to report on? Drop us an email at

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Weekend Roundup – On & Around Queen Anne

October 24th, 2013 by Laura Fonda

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Halloween is just around the corner – fun up and down Queen Anne Ave next Thursday… but, until then, we have the weekend! Remember the closure of eastbound Mercer before you head out, and Saturday morning also brings the Puget Sound Heart & Stroke Walk and street closures around the Seattle Center.


  • Mercer: full weekend closure eastbound Mercer, 11:59pm Friday, Oct 25 to 5am, Monday, Oct 28
  • Multi-Day Events:

  • French Cinema Festival, SIFF Uptown, Oct 24-30
  • Dia de Muertos, Seattle Center Armory, Oct 26-27
  • Freaknight Festival, WaMu Theatre, Oct 26-27
  • Much Ado About Nothing, Seattle Shakespeare Company, Oct 23-Nov 17
  • Bo-Nita, Seattle Rep, Oct 18-Nov 17
  • The Daughter of the Regiment, Seattle Opera, Oct 19-Nov 2
  • Friday, October 25

  • Bring Your Own Pumpkin (BYOP), Seattle Children’s Museum, 5:30pm-7pm
  • SIFF Uptown New & Continuing Films: Gravity, Captain Phillips
  • Saturday, October 26

  • Puget Sound Heart & Stroke Walk, Seattle Center, 9-11am
  • Little Paws 4 Rescue, All the Best Pet Care, 11am-3pm
  • Huskies vs Cal Golden Bears, Husky Stadium, 8pm
  • Sunday, October 27

  • Cat Tales Kitten Adoption, All the Best Pet Care, 11am-3pm
  • McCaw Hall Day of Celebration, McCaw Hall, 11am FREE
  • Trick or Treat on the Waterfront, 11am-5pm FREE
  • Sounders vs LA Galaxy, CenturyLink, 6pm
  • From Sweden with Love Auction, Swedish Club, 5pm
  • Have an event that you would like us to report on? Drop us an email at

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    Weekend Roundup – On & Around Queen Anne

    October 3rd, 2013 by Laura Fonda

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    Before you head out this weekend, remember the 99 and Viaduct closures – it’ll make traffic woes increase around Queen Anne. A good reason to stick around and walk to your Queen Anne destination, the weather is even supposed to cooperate!


  • 99/Aurora/Viaduct: full weekend closure of Aurora/99 from 11pm Friday, Oct 4 to 5am, Monday, Oct 7. The Viaduct is closed from 5am-6pm Saturday and 6am-6pm Sunday.
  • Montlake Bridge: closed to vehicular traffic from 5am Saturday, Oct 5 until 5am Monday, Oct 7 for bridge maintenance work.
  • Multi-Day Events:

  • Artisan NW Handmade Tile Show & Sale, UW Center for Urban Horticulture, Oct 4-5
  • Seattle South Asian Film Festival, SIFF Film Center & SIFF Uptown, Oct 4-13
  • Used Board Game Auction, Blue Highway Games, Oct 5-6
  • Annual Northwest Tea Festival, Seattle Center Fisher Pavilion, Oct 5-6
  • Air Twyla, PNB, Sept 27-Oct 6
  • She’s Come Undone, Book-It, Sept 18-Oct 13
  • The Servant of Two Masters, Seattle Rep, Sept 27-Oct 20
  • Friday, October 4

  • Twirl Movie Night: The Little Mermaid, Twirl, 5pm
  • Vino in the Village, Magnolia Village, 6-9pm
  • Josh Groban, Key Arena, 8pm
  • SIFF Uptown New & Continuing Films: Gravity, Bad Milo, Prisoners
  • Saturday, October 5

  • Phinney Neighborhood Preschool Co-op Kids Sale, PNA, 9am-1pm
  • All-Montlake Fall Yard Sale, Montlake, 9am-4pm
  • Seattle Fire Day, MOHAI, 10am-2pm FREE
  • Adventure Race for Parkinson’s, Ballard, 10am
  • “Pawty” at the Seattle Animal Shelter, SAS, noon-6pm
  • Sunday, October 6

  • Run About the World 5K Run/Walk, Gas Works Park, 9:25am
  • CroatiaFest, Seattle Center Armory, noon-8pm FREE
  • Independent Bookseller Panel, Queen Anne Library, 2-4pm FREE
  • Have an event that you would like us to report on? Drop us an email at

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    Traffic Alert: Microsoft Company Meeting at Key Arena on Thursday

    September 25th, 2013 by Laura Fonda

    Heads up if you have to drive around Lower Queen Anne/Uptown tomorrow, Thursday, September 26th – the annual Microsoft Company Meeting is at Key Arena.

    The meeting starts at 10am and concludes at 4pm. Expect traffic in the morning rush hour to be significantly increased en route to the Key. Afternoon/early evening traffic will also be impacted.

    Microsoft plans to shuttle many employess to the Key, but with 20,000 employees expected to attend, there are going to be plenty of additional cars traveling through the Mercer corridor and around the Key.

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    CANCELLED: Mercer Alert: northbound 99/Aurora and eastbound Mercer closure starts tonight

    September 6th, 2013 by Laura Fonda

    Update: due to weather impacts, SDOT has cancelled tonight’s Aurora and Mercer closures. Expect them to be rescheduled to mid-September.

    SDOT will be closing northbound 99/Aurora and eastbound Mercer St starting Friday, September 6th at 11pm. Both routes will reopen by 2pm on Saturday, September 7th.

    Details from SDOT:

    • Northbound 99/Aurora and eastbound Mercer Street will be fully closed to traffic 11pm Friday, September 6 through 2pm Saturday, September 7
    • Northbound 99/Aurora will be closed between the southern end of the Battery Street Tunnel and Valley Street
    • Mercer will be fully closed to traffic between 5th Ave N and Dexter Ave N
    • Eastbound Mercer will be fully closed to traffic between Dexter Ave N and 9th Ave N until approximately 9am Saturday morning
    • No pedestrian access will be allowed on Mercer between 5th Ave N and Dexter Ave N during the closure. Pedestrians will need to use the sidewalk on the north side of Broad Street to cross 99/Aurora
    • Southbound 99/Aurora, westbound Mercer, Broad St, and the I-5 on- and off-ramps at Mercer Street will remain open

    SDOT advises that drivers “can expect significant traffic and delays and should plan ahead and use alternate routes.”

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    Weekend Roundup – On & Around Queen Anne

    August 15th, 2013 by Laura Fonda

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    It’s going to be a busy weekend around Queen Anne, especially the streets surrounding the Seattle Center and Uptown – it’s Hempfest weekend with 50,000-70,000 attendees expected per, so parking will get tricky. Plus, on Saturday, add in the World’s Largest Water Balloon Fight at the Seattle Center (13,000 attendees), the Storm playing at Key Arena, and a free movie at the Mural… it’s going to be busy! If you head away from Queen Anne, be sure to note the Lake Union 10K Saturday morning and the Seahawks at CenturyLink Saturday night.

    Multi-Day Events:

    • Hempfest, Centennial Park, Myrtle Edwards Park, and Olympic Sculpture Park, Aug 16-18 FREE
    • Viking Days, Nordic Heritage Museum, Ballard, Aug 17-18 FREE
    • Concerts at the Locks, Ballard Locks, FREE June 1-Sept 2 (Sat & Sun, 2pm)
    • Imaginate, Pacific Science Center, June 1 – Sept 2

    Friday, August 16

    Saturday, August 17

    Sunday, August 18

    Have an event that you would like us to report on? Drop us an email at

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