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Friday, July 27, 2012
Leon Winger, WSDOT project engineer, 360-905-1500 (Vancouver)
Heidi Sause, WSDOT communications, 360-905-2057 (Vancouver)
Crews aim to open new southbound I-5 lane on Aug. 2, before Clark County Fair kickoff
VANCOUVER – Crews are one step away from opening a new lane on southbound Interstate 5 and wrapping up widening work on the Salmon Creek Interchange Project – but that last step is going to be a hurdle for drivers.
Next week, drivers should plan for full overnight closures of I-5 and Interstate 205 just south of the Clark County Fairgrounds while crews reconfigure and restripe all lanes at the interstates’ junction.
“This location is challenging and space is really tight,” said Washington State Department of Transportation Project Engineer Leon Winger. “The only way we can get this done safely is with a full closure, and fortunately, drivers have options nearby to avoid the closure.”
Once the lanes are reconfigured and striped, crews expect to open the new lane on southbound I-5 by Aug. 2 – just before an anticipated 100,000 attendees head to the fairgrounds for the opening weekend of the Clark County Fair.
Closure schedule and alternate routes
Monday, July 30
Southbound I-5 will be fully closed at the I-205 junction from 11 p.m. Monday to 5 a.m. Tuesday. Through traffic will be diverted onto I-205 (Exit 7). Drivers can use the interchanges at Northeast 134th Street and Northeast Padden Parkway to access I-5.
Tuesday, July 31
Southbound I-205 will be fully closed at the I-5 junction from 11 p.m. Tuesday to 5 a.m. Wednesday. Through traffic will be diverted onto I-5. Local traffic and drivers heading to Legacy Salmon Creek Hospital should exit I-5 at NE 179th Street (Exit 9) and follow a signed detour.
Wednesday, Aug. 1
The on-ramp from Northeast 179th Street to southbound I-5 will be fully closed from 11 p.m. Wednesday to 5 a.m. Thursday. Drivers can use the interchange at Northeast 134th Street to access the interstates.
Striping work is weather-dependent and may be rescheduled in the event of inclement weather.
For the past year, construction has shifted traffic onto the outside of the I-5 corridor while contractor crews working with WSDOT built brand-new lanes for both directions of the interstate.
Widening work is part of a $130 million project to reduce congestion and improve safety for drivers on the interstates and local roads in the busy Salmon Creek area. The multi-stage project is a partnership between WSDOT and Clark County Public Works.
Crews are scheduled to begin work on the fourth and final stage of the project – building a new interchange at Northeast 139th Street – later this summer. The entire project is scheduled for completion in 2014.
Hyperlinks within the news release
• Project website www.wsdot.wa.gov/projects/i5/NE134thI205/
• Clark County Fair www.clarkcofair.com/
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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