We built a roundabout at the intersection of SR 542 and SR 547 near the North Fork Library in Kendall to improve safety at the intersection. We also closed a second intersection of the two highways and a section of roadway south of the roundabout where several severe collisions had occurred.
Before the roundabout was built, SR 542 and SR 547 had two intersections – a T-intersection near the North Fork Library, and a Y-intersection to the south. Several injury collisions had occurred at the Y-intersection. To eliminate this, that intersection was closed, along with about 500 feet of SR 542. The roundabout was built at the T-intersection. This keeps traffic moving smoothly and reduces the potential for severe collisions. The 500 feet of the old highway that was closed has been torn up and restored to a more natural state.
Building a roundabout reduces the chances of serious collisions because it eliminates vehicles crossing the westbound lane to merge onto SR 542. Studies have shown that roundabouts reduce the chances of a serious collision because traffic is merging rather than crossing.
At peak periods during the winter, these intersections experienced heavy traffic from skiers going to or from the Mount Baker Ski Area. The roundabout reduces speeds through the intersection and provides opportunities for all traffic to merge.
Partnerships & Cooperation
The project was funded by a $2.4 million from the 2013 Washington State Federal Lands Access Program grant. The purpose of the program is to improve safe access to recreational and scenic activities within the Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest.
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