This Mobility Improvement Project widened three miles of SR 17 from two lanes to four. It was the only two-lane segment between I-90 and the Grant County International Airport and Industrial Park. There are 900 acres of industrial property located at the airport three miles north of the project and 350 more, just east of the project in the Wheeler Industrial Corridor. The project reduces shipping time and improves access for freight, while also assuring a safer highway for everyone.
Expanding this segment of SR 17 to four lanes was recommended in a 1997 study. The project crosses major intersections at Nelson Road, Wheeler Road and Broadway Avenue in Moses Lake, as well as a railroad crossing near Stratford Road. A new bridge was constructed across Parker Horn of Moses Lake.
WSDOT, through computer modeling, estimated that if this project was not built, the average afternoon travel speed would have been 15 mph by 2020. Now, the average afternoon travel speeds in 2010 and 2020 will be 42 mph and 39 mph, respectively. in 2006, the average afternoon travel speed was 30-mph.
By updating the signal systems and placing a concrete median barrier through the project, a safer travel corridor is provided.
Due to increasing business operation adjacent to the project, truck traffic continues to increase. The additional lanes reduce traffic congestion.
| Protects Environment
With traffic congestion reduced,air quality is improved. A stream that runs through a roadside ditch was relocated to provide for separation from roadway runoff. A noise wall was installed on the west side of SR 17 between Nelson Road and Wheeler Road.
| Economic Incentive
The additional lanes reduce shipping time between the Port's industrial properties and Interstate 90.
Partnerships & Cooperation
A Moses Lake contractor, Central Washington Asphalt was the successful bidder on this project and proved to be extremely sensitive to the community, adjusting work and schedules to reduce traffic and other project impacts.
A wetland area adjacent to the project was impacted. Wetland banking improvements at the nearby "Three Ponds" site in the City of Moses Lake were used to mitigate the impacts caused by the project.
Project Engineer Bob Romine
WSDOT North Central Region Project Office
PO Box 98
Wenatchee, WA 98807
Phone: 509-667-2880, or toll-free 1-888-461-8816
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