Daytime closures at the Ballard Locks this week

The Ballard Locks will be closed for 10 hours on Tuesday and Wednesday (Sept. 18 and 19) this week for dive operations. The closures will be in effect from 6am to 4pm each day, and the locks will be closed to all marine traffic but emergency vessels.

According to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, divers will inspect a saltwater drain screen structure immediately upstream of the locks and inspect the large lock chamber work gates. The drain screen is used to prevent salmon from entering the locks’ saltwater return intake; divers will open 10, 10-foot-by-6-foot doors and inspect the 30-by-60 foot curved-front, mesh screen structure. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers closes the doors and inspects the structure annually before salmon migration season begins mid-June and reopens the doors mid-September.

The work gate inspection is in preparation for the upcoming large lock annual maintenance closure, happening in late October. This year the large chamber will close October 29 and reopen November 21.

Photo from the Locks Facebook page, of last year’s locks tours

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Lost on a Charity Scavenger Hunt
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Lost on a Charity Scavenger Hunt

Great. Now the hobos stole the canal water. WHAT NEXT?!

Mitch
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Mitch

lol

Kirk
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Kirk

What of land traffic there?
Many walk across the Locks. Some walk bicycles, baby carriages, other ped-friendly vehicles. Please update this post with info for them, so they’ll be spared a walk across the Ballard Bridge

Odin the hairless Viking
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Odin the hairless Viking

Yes, the article is sadly incomplete as it only indicated that boat traffic would not go thru the locks, except for emergency marine traffic (boats).

There should have been info about foot traffic as people do go there for the gardens and the interpretive center.

Ballardite
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Ballardite

It is important to note that this could still be an issue for those with comfort animals such as horses or muskox that may not feel comfortable with the height of the drained lock. The U.S. Army Corps should ensure that adequate alternatives are in place for all citizens and comfort animals.

Lampchop
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Lampchop

LOLOLOLOL Love it.

Lock Walk
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Lock Walk

True, it would have been nice for a “Foot traffic will not be impeded.” announcement but common sense dictates that to do their dives, at least one end of the locks (with its crosswalk gangway) will need to be closed so Lake Washington doesn’t rush out in a torrent and sweep the divers to Bainbridge Island. Likewise, to empty the large lock both ends will need to be closed. Walking will most assuredly be possible during these works.

Kirk
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Kirk

Common sense indicates that if they lock the Locks in one position: EMPTY: marine traffic can’t pass but pedestrians can cross. But they might not want all those people around while they do their work, stage their gear, ??? Not my call.

The people who know can tell us, here!

Amanda
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Amanda

Thanks Kirk, I had the same question earlier on a facebook post and noone knowledgeable answered. I walk my kids across in a stroller and it would be helpful to know what days we can’t do that. People also bike commute across. The answer was not obvious to me.

Lock Walk
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Lock Walk

I’ve been to the locks many times when they’ve been drained and people are allowed to walk over the gate bridges with no issue.

asdf
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asdf

It’s not your call?

Lampchop
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Lampchop

That would mean that the oh so educated people of Seattle actually think. Silly you.

asdf
Guest
asdf

Yes how horrible that people don’t want to make assumptions of what it means when they say the locks are closed for maintenance.