We installed concrete median barrier along a 10-mile stretch of northbound I-5 in the Marysville area and removed the existing low-tension cable median barrier. We left the existing southbound cable barrier in place to provide redundant protection. We also widened the median shoulders to 10 feet, bringing them up to current standards.
With $2.5 million of additional funding from the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), we also installed traffic cameras, electronic message signs, and traffic sensors along I-5 in Marysville.
Concrete barrier will reduce the risk of serious cross-median collisions involving southbound vehicles into the northbound lanes. The existing southbound cable barrier system will provide redundant protection. Wider shoulders will maintain access for emergency vehicles and provide a refuge area for disabled vehicles.
New electronic message signs, traffic cameras and traffic sensors along I-5 in Marysville will provide more information to help drivers plan their trips and avoid congestion.
Partnerships & Cooperation
In July 2007, WSDOT, the Washington State Patrol and independent experts completed a detailed review of statewide cable median barrier and cross-median collisions on I-5 in Marysville at the request of Governor Gregoire. The report noted a higher-than-average number of crossover collisions on I-5 in Marysville, for reasons not completely understood by safety specialists. As a result, the report recommended installing concrete barrier along northbound I-5 in Marysville to provide the highest possible level of protection against southbound drivers crossing the median and entering northbound lanes.
Though concrete barrier will lower the risk that southbound drivers will cross into the northbound lanes, it will create a new risk to northbound drivers. Concrete barrier will increase the risk that drivers who run off the freeway will rebound off of the barrier into other vehicles. Drivers who hit the concrete barrier will also experience a significantly higher force of impact than those who hit cable median barrier.
The 2008 supplemental legislative budget included $26.9 million to install concrete barrier along 10 miles of northbound I-5 in Marysville. We advertised the project for competitive bidding in April 2009 and awarded it to Tri-State Construction in June 2009. We began construction in July 2009 and completed the project in November 2010.
This project was funded through the following fund sources:
Note: the 2008 legislature allocated $30.5 million for this project, but WSDOT saved nearly $12 million when pre-construction and estimated construction costs came in under budget. The $12 million in cost savings was reallocated to pay for other state transportation projects.
WSDOT Project Engineer Chad Brown
9029 El Capitan Way
Everett, WA 98208
Phone: (425) 225-8725
WSDOT Communications Meghan Pembroke
15700 Dayton Ave. N
PO Box 330310
Seattle, WA 98133
Phone: (206) 440-4704
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