Thomas St: 5th Ave N to Dexter Ave N

August 8, 2023

What’s happening now?

The Thomas St project, between 5th Ave N to Dexter Ave N, has reached final design. We have secured contractors for the work which is anticipated to begin in fall of 2023. 

The project’s budget has seen some reductions. Until additional funds are identified, work to the west of Taylor Ave N will be implemented as an interim east-west bicycle facility. We will also create a plaza consisting of temporary landscaping and seating between 5th Ave N and the alley between 5th Ave N and Taylor Ave N.

Project Overview

In coordination with Seattle City Light and other adjacent property owners, we will make improvements on Thomas St between 5th Ave N and Dexter Ave N. 

As past of the Thomas Street Redefined concept plan, the design focuses on improvements for a half-block closure at Thomas St east of 5th Ave N, a northern promenade for a multi-use trail from 5th Ave N to 6th Ave N, and a protected intersection at Dexter Ave N and Thomas St. Bicycle facilities are existing or planned between 6th Ave N and Dexter Ave N.

We have initiated the first phase of the improvements along Thomas St from 5th Ave N to Dexter Ave N by constructing an interim diverter at Dexter Ave N. This was completed in conjunction with the new traffic signal at Thomas St and 7th Ave N (formerly Aurora Ave N). The purpose of the diverter is to lower vehicle traffic volumes along Thomas St, a corridor prioritized for people walking and biking. This improvement changed access to Thomas St at Dexter Ave N - as Thomas St will function as a right in - right out street.

Project Maps

Thomas St: 5th Ave N to Dexter Ave N

The project extent is along Thomas St from 5th Ave N to 9th Ave N and along Taylor Ave N between Thomas St and Harrison St. Most of the improvements in this project will be installed between 5th Ave N and Dexter Ave N, with some minor improvements between Dexter Ave N to 9th Ave N to connect to the existing protected bike lanes at Dexter Ave N and 9th Ave N.

Map showing project area on Thomas St between 5th Ave N and Dexter Ave N.

Graphic showing work on Thomas StThe this link for a larger image. 

Project Background

Thomas St is an important east/west green street and public realm connection, linking the Cascade neighborhood through South Lake Union to the Seattle Center. This project stemmed from the Thomas Street Redefined Plan and is identified in the Bicycle Master Plan as a Neighborhood Greenway.

This project will construct a protected intersection at Thomas St and Dexter Ave N to support and prioritize non-motorized traffic in this corridor, particularly around event times at the Seattle Center. The protected intersection will include a traffic signal to make it easier for people walking and biking to cross Dexter Ave N. This will provide an important connection in the citywide biking network by linking Thomas St to the popular Dexter Ave N bike lanes. 

Thomas Street Redefined

Thomas Street Redefined is a community-driven, visionary concept plan for a pedestrian and bicyclist-oriented corridor connecting the Waterfront, Uptown, Seattle Center, South Lake Union, and Eastlake neighborhoods. This project will begin implementation of the Thomas Street Redefined vision by establishing the vehicular use of Thomas St as defined by the vision in coordination with the 7th Ave N project. More intermediate and permanent improvements will follow as early as spring 2020.

Thomas Street Redefined consist of two parts: West of Seattle Center (connecting Seattle Center to the Elliott Bay Trail via Thomas St Overpass) and East of Seattle Center (connecting Seattle Center to Eastlake). This project is the first phase of the East of Seattle Center connection.


Schedule graphic showing that we are in the preconstruction phase of the project.

  1. Planning (2019-2021): We collected traffic data, reviewed plans, and gathered community experiences to define options.
  2. Design (2021-2023): We are collaborating with the community, and developing a more detailed final design. 
  3. Construction (as soon as fall 2023): We will construct the project and keep the community informed on the latest construction updates, schedule, and expected impacts. 
  4. Project completion (planned for 2024)



Greg Spotts, Director
Address: 700 5th Ave, Suite 3800, Seattle, WA, 98104
Mailing Address: PO Box 34996, Seattle, WA, 98124-4996
Phone: (206) 684-7623

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The Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) is on a mission to deliver a transportation system that provides safe and affordable access to places and opportunities for everyone as we work to achieve our vision of Seattle as a thriving, equitable community powered by dependable transportation.