Public involvement for this project has been underway since 2003. During this time, WSDOT and the project partners have held several stakeholder meetings and five public open houses to share this project with the public. The first open house occurred in April 2003 at the Cowlitz County Public Works building in Kelso; the second was held in October 2003 at the Cowlitz County Public Utilities District building in Kelso, and the third open house was in January 2005 at the Kelso Train Depot. Another open house was held in February 2006 at the Cowlitz County Public Utilities District in Kelso. The project was on display at an open house at the Cowlitz County PUD Jan. 18, 2007. An open house showing the updated design was held in September 2007 at the Kelso Area Engineering Office. WSDOT hosted a pre-construction open house for this project in October 2009 to discuss plans for construction and receive feedback from the public.
WSDOT hosted a groundbreaking ceremony on December 18, 2009.
Additional public outreach efforts will be scheduled throughout the design and environmental phases of the project so that residents and property owners can review and contribute to the project's plans prior to construction. WSDOT will provide updates on the project’s progress using public meetings or open houses, project mailings, this Web page and the local media.
For the latest public involvement meetings in Southwest Washington, visit the Southwest Region's Public Involvement page.
Increasing safety is our priority
This project will help reduce collisions caused by vehicles changing lanes and merging between the current interchanges.
WSDOT and the Cowlitz-Wahkiakum Council of Governments (CWCOG) are committed to preserving the environment, and we make every effort to assess and minimize environmental impact from our projects. In 2004, a consultant the CWCOG and WSDOT began work on an environmental review for this project. This assessment will determine potential impacts of possible alignments on the natural and built environment; evaluate options for lessening these impacts; and determine necessary regulatory approvals. This information will help guide final design and construction. More specific information from this environmental document will be made available on this Web page as this phase continues.
For environmental information specific to this project, please contact Barb Aberle at (360) 905-2186, or e-mail AberleB@wsdot.wa.gov.
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 Tribe. Since this project has only recently entered the very early stages of design, the tribal consultation process has not yet begun. WSDOT will initiate consultation with the Cowlitz Tribe as necessary as the project design develops.
For more information visit our WSDOT Tribal Liaison website.