Landslide Blocks Burien Road

Road Closure of SW 172nd St/Sylvester Rd SW Expected to Last Several Days
Posted on 01/12/2022
Landslide blocks road.

Update January 24, 2022

SW 172nd St/Sylvester Rd has been reopened to one-way traffic. Flaggers are on site to direct traffic. The road will be fully open later today.

Update January 20, 2022

The City has established a plan to clear the landslide from SW 172nd St/Sylvester Rd. At this time, it is estimated the road will re-open by Monday, January 24. Several loads of material were removed from the site today. A small wall will be constructed tomorrow (Saturday). 

Update January 12, 2022

The road is closed where Sylvester Rd SW turns into SW 172nd St because of a landslide blocking the road (see map of road closure). 

City staff are evaluating the landslide on Sylvester Rd/SW 172nd St and developing a plan to safely clear the road. It is expected that the road will remain closed for at least a few more days. Fire trucks and other emergency vehicles have adequate space to pass through.

Safety measures must be put in place both before and during the construction process. Another factor that is affecting the timeline is that there are landslides throughout the region which is making it more difficult to secure supplies and professional staff. There have also been supply chain issues with concrete.

City staff are currently developing a temporary solution that would allow the road to be opened. This includes the city manager issuing an executive order allowing the City to expedite procurement processes. The plan also includes securing materials, finding a contractor to do the work, developing a geotechnical and engineering design, and communicating and coordinating with the property owner.

The City will continue to update this page when new information is available.

Watch for signs of landslides

The combination of recent snowmelt and heavy rain has increased landslide threats in our area. Watch for signs of landslide activity:

  • Doors or windows stick or jam for the first time.
  • New cracks appear in plaster, tile, brick, or foundation.
  • Outside walls, walks, or stairs begin pulling away from the building.
  • Slowly developing, widening cracks appear on the ground or on paved areas such as streets or driveways.
  • Underground utility lines break.
  • Bulging ground appears at the base of a slope.
  • Water breaks through the ground surface in new locations.
  • Fences, retaining walls, utility poles, or trees tilt or move.

Visit to learn more about how to prepare for—and what to do during—landslides.