CHEHALIS – Relief is on the way for drivers who have been detouring around the Chamber Way overpass closure in Chehalis.
Emergency contractor crews working for the Washington State Department of Transportation will reopen the road to two-way traffic by installing a 50-foot-long temporary bridge to temporarily replace the well-used overpass in early August. The span was severely damaged by an oversized load traveling on southbound Interstate 5 Friday, July 22.
“Reconnecting this major thoroughfare for the people of Chehalis is a priority,” said WSDOT Regional Administrator Kris Strickler. “While we are pleased that we’re moving forward with this temporary solution, there is still more work for us to do.”
This weekend, WSDOT’s contractor will begin assembly of the temporary bridge. The modular steel components are manufactured by Acrow Bridge, the same company that supplied a similar temporary span for the I-5 Skagit River Bridge in 2013. In order to complete the installation, WSDOT is designing and fabricating components needed to hold the structure in place on existing bridge piers.
Once opened to traffic, there will be no load restrictions on Chamber Way. There will also be a slightly higher vertical clearance above the southbound portion of the interstate. Due to the confined space, there is no pedestrian access on the span, but WSDOT is evaluating potential solutions.
Long-term options for the overpass are still being developed, and more information will be provided as it becomes available.