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North Central Region NewsBrief


May 26, 2016

In this issue:

· On the Road 

          Memorial Day Travel

    o Enterprise Drive RAB

· Behind the Curtain

    o Input Makes a Difference

    o Keeping Cougars Safe

· Survey

    o A New List

On the Road

· All work stops at noon Friday until Tuesday for the Memorial Day weekend.

· If you’re planning to travel, check our Holiday Travel Graphs – click here.

· On I-90 this holiday weekend expect backups at the Vantage Bridge tomorrow and at Cle Elum Monday. We’re repainting selected portions of the Vantage Bridge and the outside eastbound lane remains closed until the end of summer. Expect delays of an hour or more between noon and 10 p.m. on Friday, May 27. Expect hour delays westbound near Cle Elum between 10 a.m. & 8 p.m. on Monday, May 30. More one hour evening blasting closures should also be expected later in the week.

· At McDougall & Sons US 2/97 Enterprise Drive Roundabout there will be flagger controlled single lane traffic starting Tuesday at 3 p.m., continuing around the clock for the next 8 days. Up to 10 min. delays are expected

· Visit our Region Construction Update page for details on these and other work.

                                       Behind the Curtain

A new choice for Lower Sunnyslope

Lower Sunnyslope @ US 2
The input we received from the nearly 100 who came to the Lower Sunnyslope intersection open house a month ago has resulted in a new alternative that now includes a left turn toward Cashmere. The design is posted on the project’s web page.

We feel this is the most viable option addressing safety balanced against the comments and concerns we received. We are very appreciative of all the input in person and via email and phone calls. Below is brief description of the new Option 4. Construction will occur this fall.

• Traffic on the north side of US 2/97 will only be permitted to make right-in-right-out turns to and from Lower Sunnyslope Rd.

• On the south side of US 2/97, the only movement that will be restricted is going through, across all five lanes of the highway. Turning left to US 2/97 westbound will be permitted. Right turns will be permitted as will left turns for westbound traffic on US 2/97 turning onto Lower Sunnyslope Road.

Watch This
Cougar Logo
On April 5th, WSDOT’s Eastern Region hosted this agency’s first online public forum to discuss safety along US 195 and SR 26, the main routes to and from the WSU Pullman campus. The interactive, town hall-style meeting provided participants the opportunity to stream the live video and submit questions and comments in real time, from a computer, tablet or smart phone.

Representatives from WSDOT, WSU and the WSP were on the panel. The organizer of an online petition that asked WSDOT to address the public’s safety concerns also participated.

Driven by two fatalities on US 195 and SR 26 last Thanksgiving weekend the forum’s efforts have already delivered tangible results in the form of a YouTube video for students. The video was also sent to all their parents. We think it carries a message that could benefit a wider audience: Click here.


Click it or Ticket

WSP logo
Saving drivers lives is the focus of the State Patrol’s “Click it or Ticket” campaign which launched this week. The nationwide campaign encourages everyone to wear their seat belt on every trip.

100% seatbelt compliance is part of our State’s Target Zero highway safety plan. In 2015 Washington seat belt use rate was 95% compared to a nationwide rate of 89%.

In our state about 100 people a year who were not belted died in crashes.

Extra patrols will run until June 5. In Washington State, a seat belt ticket is $136.


The survey questions remain the same this week – How did you hear/read about the East Wenatchee roundabout open house and if you are subscribing to any of the other 200 WSDOT emails besides this one. Click Here for the survey

We’re offering the opportunity to be the first subscriber to a new list that we really hope gets little use this summer.

As a result of the fire, flood and mudslides from the Skagit to the Methow Valley over the past two summers, we have established a new list for SR 20 between I-5/Sedro Woolley on the west side to US 97/Okanogan on the east, for any closures, restrictions and construction. It took a little work since that zone includes both this region and Northwest Region and requires staff on both sides to post and distribute anything on their side of the passes that could affect travel for highway users on either side.

NCH clearing
Some of you are no doubt subscribed to the North Cascades spring reopening newsletters. There are 8,000 subscribers on 5 continents who expect to get emails for 4 to 6 weeks a year. Most subscribers to that list generally are only interested in updates on the the clearing progresses until Tootsie serves her cinnamon rolls and we open the gates.

We determined from previous experiences that sending other SR 20 closure or construction alerts were not appreciated, so this new list was created this week:

Name: SR 20 North Cascades Hwy - Local
Click here for the direct subscription link.

Enjoy the Holiday and stay safe,

Dan Sarles

Regional Administrator, WSDOT North Central Region

If you have any questions on items in this NewsBrief, or other transportation issues, please let me know. Call me at (509) 667-3001 or send me an e-mail at:

NewsBriefs are the result of the efforts of my Leadership Team:
Leadership Team