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Badger Road roundabouts to be built next year

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Date:  Thursday, May 03, 2012

Contact: Dustin Terpening, communications, 360-757-5997 (Burlington)
Chris Damitio, project engineer, 360-788-7403 (Bellingham)

Review construction plans at May 15 community meeting in Lynden

LYNDEN – Lane closures and traffic delays will be inevitable when two roundabouts planned for Badger Road (State Route 546) in Lynden go to construction next year. That’s why engineers are making plans now to keep traffic moving through the busy intersections during construction. Local drivers and residents can learn about those plans – and the new roundabouts – at an upcoming community meeting.

“We’re talking about building roundabouts in the middle of two busy intersections; no matter how we build them, there will be delays to contend with,” said Project Engineer Chris Damitio. “We’ve got a couple options for building them, though, and we’d like to bounce our ideas off the community to see what they think.”

Engineers with the Washington State Department of Transportation will share detailed designs and potential construction plans, and be available to answer questions from 5 to 7 p.m. Tuesday, May 15, at the Lynden City Hall Annex, 205 Fourth Street, in Lynden. It’s an informal meeting, and visitors are welcome to show up at any time.

The single-lane roundabouts planned for the Bender Road and Depot Road intersections can be built one of two ways, and there are pros and cons to both, Damitio said.

The first option is more aggressive, which gets the roundabouts built quickly, but has more full closures of the highway and detours for drivers. The second is milder in terms of closures and keeps at least one lane open more often, but will take longer to build.

“It’s kind of like pulling off a Band-Aid,” said Damitio. “We can get in there and do the job quickly with a brief measure of pain for drivers, or we can do it more slowly, spreading out the pain for a longer period of time.”

Also on display at the meeting will be plans for widening Guide Meridian (SR 539) near the Lynden-Aldergrove border crossing. Engineers are designing plans to add one northbound lane, expand the shoulder, and build a truck spur between H Street and the border. Currently, there is only money for design, and no money for construction. The project coincides with a project already funded in Canada that expands the northbound border inspection facility.

For those unable to attend the meeting, more details and comment forms are available on the Web.
- Guide Meridian project www.wsdot.wa.gov/Projects/SR539/BorderCrossing/  
- Badger Road project www.wsdot.wa.gov/Projects/SR546/IntersectionImprovements/  
- Roundabout design visuals www.flickr.com/photos/wsdot/sets/72157629958048283/  

The meeting site is accessible to persons with disabilities. Accommodations for people with disabilities can be arranged in advance by calling Dustin Terpening at 360-757-5997.


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