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I-5 - Mellen Street to Blakeslee Junction - Project Specifics

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Public involvement

Your thoughts and opinions are important to us.

We hosted an open house on January 12, 2012, to discuss upcoming construction and anticipated traffic impacts. A public open house and formal access hearing was held on May 25, 2010 provide project updates and allow affected property owners the opportunity to record testimony on the project.

WSDOT held an open house in March 2009 to present refinements made to the project design, answer questions and receive public feedback. Another open House was held in October 2008 to present design changes and receive public feedback on the proposed Collector/Distributor lanes (.pdf, 141kb) for the I-5, Mellen Street to Blakeslee Junction project.

We discussed this project at Sounding Board meetings in 2006 and 2008. The Sounding Boards consisted of representatives from local jurisdictions, major institutions and other stakeholders to provide input and community perspectives throughout the design phase. In April 2008, WSDOT convened another Sounding Board committee to provide input on the Collector/Distributor lanes between Mellen St. and Harrison Ave. interchanges.

In 2006, we held three open houses to solicit public feedback. On March 7, WSDOT introduced the project and asked for ideas and suggestions. A second open house on May 9 focused on issues and options at the Mellen Street interchange. On December 5, WSDOT provided an update on the project, presented proposed improvements to I-5 as it is widened between Mellen Street and Grand Mound, and asked for comments from the public on alternatives to improve the Mellen Street interchange.

Public involvement efforts related to this project first began in 1992, when WSDOT started work on the I-5, Toutle Park Road to Maytown Environmental Impact Statement (EIS). Multiple open houses and public meetings were held in August 1992, April 1994 and January 1997 as part of the development of the EIS. The project did not move forward at the time due to a lack of funding at the state level.

For the latest public involvement meetings in southwest Washington, visit the Southwest Region's Public Involvement page.

Increasing safety is our priority

As traffic levels increase on this section of I-5, safety problems are expected to grow. This project will help address these potential problems.

Environmental protection

WSDOT makes every effort to assess and minimize environmental impacts from our projects. In 2003, WSDOT completed an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the I-5 corridor between Toutle Park Road in Cowlitz County and Maytown in Thurston County. This EIS evaluated alternatives for widening this section of I-5 to a six-lane divided highway; improving, widening or replacing various interchanges, bridges and overcrossings in the area; relocating frontage roads; and other improvements.

In addition, specific environmental impacts related to construction will also be analyzed and, if necessary, WSDOT will develop an appropriate plan for mitigation of impacts as part of its usual environmental documentation and permitting processes.

For environmental information specific to this project, please contact Barb Aberle at (360) 905-2186, or e-mail

Will this project impact tribal resources?

At WSDOT we seek to address the concerns of the tribal nations using the process outlined in Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act and the WSDOT Tribal Consultation Policy adopted in 2003 by the Transportation Commission as part of the WSDOT Centennial Accord Plan.

This project lies within the usual and accustomed areas of the Cowlitz and Chehalis Tribes. WSDOT has initiated consultation with appropriate tribal governments and will continue to consult with the tribes throughout the process.

For more information visit our WSDOT Tribal Liaison website.