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Wednesday, June 06, 2012
Moe Davari, WSDOT project engineer, 509-222-2402 (Richland)
Mike Westbay, WSDOT communications, 509-577-1617 (Yakima)
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 6, 2012
New interchange, improvements to reduce collisions on US 12 near Burbank
Improvements separate high-speed cross traffic, improve congestion
BURBANK – Elected officials and a coalition of regional supporters today celebrated the completion of a major highway safety project expected to reduce collisions and improve traffic flow on US 12, State Route 124 and Humorist Road.
State Sen. Mike Hewitt, state Rep. Terry Nealy and Jim Kuntz, Port of Walla Walla executive director, joined highway department executives to celebrate the safety benefits of the newly completed interchange and overpass.
The $21.3 million safety improvement project reduces the risks of collisions in an area with a long history of serious injuries and fatalities – 56 injury collisions, six fatalities in the past 12 years.
“Thanks go to Sen. Mike Hewitt for making the tough vote for the gas tax and fighting to bring this project to our community,” said State Rep. Terry Nealy.
“It took a lot of partners a long time to get this project funded,” said Don Whitehouse, Washington State Department of Transportation regional administrator. “We also had a great partnership between Selland Construction and WSDOT to get a quality product that will serve this community for a long, long time to come.”
Since opening to traffic in May, the new interchange and overpass bridges have allowed traffic on SR 124 and Humorist Road to safely cross over the 60 mph traffic on US 12. Also, two new roundabouts will circulate traffic quickly and safely without the use of stop signs at two new intersections.
WSDOT and contractor, Selland Construction, worked the past 15 months building the new interchange at US 12/SR 124 and a new overpass at US 12/Humorist Road for the 16,000 drivers who use these state highways each day.
Local street improvements including a new entrance to Hood Park, an extension of Jantz Road and a new roundabout on Fifth Street, will improve traffic flow within the town of Burbank as well as access to US 12, SR 124 and Humorist Road.
This project was funded by the 2005 gas tax approved by the Legislature.
WSDOT keeps people, businesses and the economy moving by operating and improving the state's transportation systems. To learn more about what we're doing, go to www.wsdot.wa.gov/news for pictures, videos, news and blogs. Real time traffic information is available at www.wsdot.wa.gov/traffic or by dialing 511.
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