BY Art Thiel 12:50PM 09/06/2013

Another ‘ingress-egress’ knot Saturday night

Even though the Washington Huskies are idle and the Seahawks open their season Sunday in Carolina, traffic in Sodo Saturday will feature another Sounders-Mariners bollix, with a big International District street party tossed in for a little Asian verve to the vehicular mayhem.

The Sounders are expecting to draw the usual 38,000-plus sellout for their 7 p.m. game against the Chicago Fire. The Mariners are expected to at least draw flies for their 6:10 p.m. start against the Tampa Bay Rays, although the major league debut of starting pitcher James Paxton might intrigue some fans looking ahead to 2017 or so.

Additionally, the annual Chinatown Autumn Moon Festival at Union Station Plaza will impact Fifth Avenue South between South Jackson and South Weller streets before and after the sports events. The event features live music, food, dance, culture and crafts.

So if you’re not already in the area, proprietors of these events suggest you begin moving toward your assumed positions soon. Travelers are invited to visit for the most updated travel information, real-time traffic maps and travel times. Roads and off-ramps that will be impacted this weekend include the following:

  • Northbound I-5 ramp to upper S. Spokane St./West Seattle Bridge
  • Northbound I-5 ramp to¬†lower S. Spokane St./6th Avenue South
  • Northbound I-5 ramp to Beacon Hill via S. Columbian Way
  • Spokane St./West Seattle Bridge detour: Northbound I-5 to exit 164B/Edgar Martinez Drive to First Avenue South to South Spokane Stree

How can this collisions among the worlds happen, you ask?

It’s the Rule of 65,000, a deal struck among the city, Sounders and Mariners a few years ago in which simultaneous games can be played on the same weekend day as long as the forecasted combined attendance is under 65,000. On weekday game games, the limit is 58,000.

The policy previously had been that no games could start within four hours of one another, which is still generally observed. The Mariners have been especially helpful in relieving the pressure by continuing their history, which is now tradition, of playing no relevant games in September — or August or July, for that matter.

Should an arena be built in SoDo, as Chris Hansen still intends, and books a concert for a two-sport night in September, it’s hard to say what might happen, but it might be worth searching information about the Donner Party.


  • Justin F

    The Mariners could just play their game up in Everett, they have enough capacity.

    • Trygvesture

      and… who’d know the difference between them and the usual A Ball inhabitants– seamless!

      • art thiel

        Maybe they could get Everett to build a new stadium.

        • Trygvesture

          They surely would try. Question is: Would there be ‘crying on the podium’ involved?

          Maybe The Bobbleheads would just figure a way to leverage their Chris Hanson beef, lie about ROOT, re-sign Griffy and Ichi, bring back the aging Gar, Dan, Bone and Unit and THEN pull out a reprise of crying on the podium, claiming the rebuilding plan will make Everett an MLB contender next year for sure. Because, you see, Hot-seat Howie’s really learned a lot on the job, ably assisted by the keen, experienced baseball mind of Chuckie “Ed McMann” Sidekick, ensuring a shivering in their boots response from Nolan Ryan, Billy Beane and the rest of the MLB execs. Why wouldn’t Everett gift a few millions to a powerhouse team like that, ensuring their personal enrichment at the expense of the Everett taxpayers? Works well in the world of the Bobblehead Twins, Ellis and the rest of the crackerjack Board of Directors– gettin rich by doin nuthin well, or nuthin at all.
          A source of civic pride, waitin in the wings.

  • Hammtime

    Can the Mariners just forfeit the rest of their games? I mean, does anybody really care that they are still playing?

    • art thiel

      They’ve already sold tickets to extended spring training.

  • Jamo57

    May I offer another resource as well:

    Back when I was still attending Ms games, I can’t remember the last time I drove to a game at the Safe. The express bus from the ‘burbs do an excellent job. Find one! We also survived the season at the Clink with Huskies. The Sounder is the first choice for weekend day games, but evening games are easily do-able too. The Thursday night ESPN east coast prime time game vs. Stanford was also very easy to navigate using the 510 from Everett.

    Stop your whining Seattle and Mariners. Do a little research and a little planning. Use public transit.

    Hat’s off to the Ms ownership though. I think killing all fan interest in the team each fall demonstrates a terrific civic ‘can-do’ attitude in helping mitigate traffic snarls.

    • Trygvesture

      Each fall? I’m thinkin’ June 1. Annually.

  • Kirkland

    If/when the Link light rail gets to the Eastside, that will make access to the games much easier. After Sounders games, the first 255 bus to Kirkland is standing room only, and the second isn’t usually much better.