Are you curious how that gigantic 99 tunnel is going to be sculpted? Me too! You can now go see the replica for yourself of the machine that is going to dig under downtown Seattle at Milepost 31, the viaduct museum in Pioneer Square. The replica is 10 feet long, making it 1/35th of the massive machine that will arrive in Seattle early next year. According to the Seattle Pi, the machine will dig deep beneath downtown to help build the 1.7 mile replacement tunnel for the Alaskan Way Viaduct.
The machine itself is currently being constructed in Japan, and when completed will stretch 300 feet long, 57 feet in diameter, and weight 6,700 tons. It will be shipped to Seattle in 41 pieces, and re-assembled here. The mini-tunnel has a series of buttons you can press to check out how it might appear in action. For an in-depth look at the viaduct project and how it’s going to affect your commute, visit the WSDOT.