Wells-Williams Conversion Project

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Last update: Nov. 22, 2021

Image of a Two Way Traffic Sign

The Wells-Williams Conversion Project improves connectivity and access in downtown Renton to make it a more vibrant and livable area by converting Wells Ave S and Williams Ave S to two-way traffic. Construction is expected to continue into summer 2021.

We have a page dedicated to all downtown Renton construction projects: www.rentonwa.gov/dcp.

Have a question or comment on the Wells-Williams Conversion Project? Join our virtual office hours, every other Friday from 1-1:30 p.m. The next one is Dec. 3.

Learn more about:

The big lead-up to the holidays

This time of year is important for businesses downtown, so we’ve worked hard to complete several major milestones:

  • rebuilding the S 2nd St intersections at Wells Ave S and Williams Ave S

  • paving most of S 3rd St, S 2nd St, and Wells Ave S.

Between now and Thanksgiving, we’ll continue to get as much work done as possible and clean up our project area so the construction impact is reduced for downtown Renton visitors and residents, including:

  • We temporarily striped S 3rd St so we can reopen it to two lanes of through traffic during the holidays. Please continue to be mindful as you navigate the all-way stops.

  • We plan to reopen most of the street parking downtown during the holidays. We put in some early mornings and were resourceful to make paving a reality during the small windows of dry weather.

  • We plan to reduce the visual presence of construction downtown, by removing as much of the cones and signage as we can, safely.

Sidewalk work on S 2nd St at Williams Ave S and Wells Ave S

We’re installing new sidewalks on S 2nd St at Williams Ave S and Wells Ave S. Like our work for S 3rd St, we’ll remove the old sidewalks and make utility connections under the sidewalks before pouring the new sidewalks.

Concrete pours are weather dependent and may be rescheduled. Concrete plants are also currently experiencing high demand regionally, which can intensify any weather-related delays.

haul away concrete forms concrete pour finished sidewalk sidewalk sealing
The concrete subcontractor removes the old sidewalk debris after using a jackhammer to break up the concrete slab. The concrete subcontractor builds the forms that will hold the concrete that is poured. To account for expansion and reduce the risk of cracking while curing, the pouring of concrete is completed in segments. The concrete subcontractor uses the forms as a mold to hold the concrete mix that is poured. After pouring, work is done to even out and smooth the concrete so there are no air bubbles or lumps. After allowing time for the concrete to cure and harden, our final step for sidewalk work is to cut grooves into the concrete to create a more polished look downtown. Sealant is applied to the concrete gaps to prevent water and vegetation from coming into contact with the concrete foundation and eroding it over time.

Parking

We are trying to minimize parking impacts as much as possible.

The City Center Parking Garage offers free parking for access to downtown businesses through December of this year and can also be used by residents during construction. The garage is accessible between 5 a.m. and 11 p.m., Sunday through Thursday, and from 5 a.m. to 1 a.m. on Friday and Saturday. Overnight parking is allowed during our construction efforts, but please note that all garage doors are locked outside of these hours. To make finding the City Center Parking Garage easier, we posted banners around the parking garage to help make it stand-out. When in doubt, look for the blue banners help find your way.

Photo of the city center parking garage

There are several public parking lots downtown that offer up to 2 hours of free parking and convenient access to downtown businesses. For more information about places to park downtown, please check out the city’s Downtown Parking Map.

Typical work hours

We’re working hard to complete the project as quickly as possible to minimize the disruption to you. Our crews typically work 7 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday – Friday. We may work after 5 p.m. and on weekends to help minimize impacts.

Three-week look-ahead schedule

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Related Downtown Projects

Houser Way Intersection & Pedestrian Improvements Project

Houser Way Intersection & Pedestrian Improvements Project will construct a new curb, gutter, sidewalk (including curb extensions) and ADA improvements on Houser Way S at Williams Ave S and Wells Ave S. A new water main will also be installed in an existing casing on Williams Ave S under the BNSF railroad tracks. Expect traffic on Wells Ave S and Williams Ave S to be reduced to one lane at Houser Way S during construction.

Downtown Utility Improvement Project

The Downtown Utility Improvement Project will upgrade water, sewer and stormwater utilities to address current use and support future development needs in the downtown core. DUIP will bring needed upgrades to the downtown core since some underground pipes are past their useful life, in poor condition, lack capacity and/ or require costly maintenance.

Houser Way Intersection and Pedestrian Improvements

This project will construct new curb, gutter and sidewalk (including curb extensions), and ADA improvements on Houser Way at Williams Ave S and Wells Ave S. In coordination, a new 12” water main will be installed in an existing casing in Williams Ave S under the BNSF railroad tracks.

Renton Connector Project

The Renton Connector project will install a continuous non-motorized facility along Burnett Ave S between S 2nd St and S 5th St via separated walkways, protected bicycle lanes (cycle track), and a multi-use path. This project will also include landscaped medians, reconfigured public parking areas, curb ramp upgrades, and traffic signalization improvements. The design is scheduled through 2021 and there may be a small portion of construction in the fall of 2021. The design and construction schedule may be revised or delayed based on impacts to the City from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Downtown Core Streetscape Improvement Project

Born out of the Civic Core Action Plan, the Downtown Core Streetscape Improvement Project will include new sidewalks, lighting, landscaping, and street furniture on Wells Ave from 2nd to 3rd. This project is phase one of a multiphase downtown improvement program. There is ongoing coordination between the Downtown Core Streetscape Improvement Project and the Wells-Williams Conversion Project in efforts to minimize concurrent impacts.

Rainier Ave Phase 4 Improvements

This project includes transportation and utility improvements from S 3rd St to NW 3rd Pl and is comprised of two phases (S 3rd St to Airport Way and Airport Way to NW 3rd Pl). It is not projected to coincide or interfere with the Wells-Williams Conversion Project.

There are also ongoing private development and franchise utility relocations downtown.

COVID-19 Resources for Businesses

Your Title VI Civil Rights

The City of Renton hereby gives public notice that it is the City's policy to assure full compliance with Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Civil Rights Restoration Act of 1987, and related statutes and regulations in all programs and activities. Title VI requires that no person shall, on the grounds of race, color, sex, or national origin be excluded from the participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be otherwise subjected to discrimination under any Federal Aid Highway program or other activity for which the City of Renton receives Federal financial assistance.

Any person who believes they have been aggrieved by an unlawful discriminatory practice under Title VI has a right to file a formal complaint with the City of Renton. Any such complaint must be in writing and filed with the City of Renton Human Resources within one hundred, eighty (180) days following the date of the alleged discriminatory occurrence. Title VI Discrimination Complaint Forms may be obtained from the City's website (www.rentonwa.gov) or from the Human Resources office at no cost to the complainant by calling (425) 430-7655.

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