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US 2 - Stevens Pass - Variable Message Signs - Completed November 2012

Start July 23, 2012, End October
Click to enlarge View entire map to see the locations for the new variable message signs to be installed under this contract.

Click to enlarge View entire photo - A computer generated picture of what the new VMS alongside the summit pedestrian overpass will look like.

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View entire photo
Here's one of the first VSLS installed near the Stevens summit in 2005.


Complete November 2012

Construction began July 23, 2012 and was complete Nov. 9.

This project draws from the P-3 Electrical Facilities Preservation Program and I-2 Safety Improvement Collision Prevention Electrical Signals Program to:

  • Install three new Variable Message Signs (VMS)
  • Install two new Variable Speed Limit Signs (VSLS)
  • Replace three obsolete VMS including backup generators
  • Replace two VSLS

within a 52 mile corridor of US 2 over Stevens Pass through the Cascade Mountains.

Why is WSDOT installing more electronic variable message and variable speed limit signs for travelers over Stevens Pass?
Congestion at the summit of Stevens Pass for both traffic and pedestrians has created an ongoing potential for collisions.  In conjunction with the US Forest Service and the Stevens Pass Ski Area, efforts to reduce those hazards have resulted in construction of a variety of projects including a pedestrian overpass. (See related projects to the left).

The purpose of this project is to further reduce the accident and collision potential by providing more and better information on road and weather conditions for drivers and to improve mobility over the summit by further reducing congestion at the summit ski area parking access points.

This contract upgrades three Variable Message Signs (VMS) and adds three new ones on both sides of the summit.  It also moves two Variable Speed Limit Signs (VSLS) and adds two new ones in the three mile section between Upper Mill Creek and Rock Mountain Roads six miles east of the summit. 

The End Result
WSDOT's intelligent transportation systems (ITS) throughout the Stevens Pass corridor improves and expands the information we can deliver to rapidly inform travelers of changing conditions (via VMS) on this 48 mile section of US 2 and to adjust speed limits accordingly (via VSLS).

These systems of electronic signs are interconnected through fiber optic cable and microwave which allows messages to be changed from our traffic management center in Wenatchee.

Traffic cameras and Road Weather Information Stations (RWIS) also provide real-time information for both our traffic managers as well as to the traveling public on the WSDOT web pages and the 5-1-1 telephone information system.

Project Benefits

  • Reduced congestion at the ski area
  • Reduced pedestrian accident potential
  • Reduced vehicle collision potential
  • Improved roadway condition notification

What is the project timeline?
Construction began July 23 be complete in 45 working days, on Nov. 9.  (Work was delayed by forest fire suspensions and materials delivery delays).

Financial Information

Financial Data for PIN 200204F, 200204M
Funding Source Amount ($ in thousands)
2003 Gas Tax (Nickel Funding) $0
2005 Gas Tax (TPA) $0
Pre-Existing Funds (PEF) $2,069
CWA $0
Total $2,069

Project signage will reflect the cost of construction engineering, project bid award and sales tax.

This project was advertised for private contractor bids on March 19. Six bids were opened on April 19. On April 30, Contract #8270 was awarded to Colvico Inc. for $1,407,513.00, 1% over the engineering estimate.

The total estimated cost for design and construction of all stages is approximately $1.90 million.

Project funding came from the following sources:

  • Pre Existing Gas Tax - $1,005,000
  • Forest Highway Enhancement Grants - $875,000
  • Stevens Pass Winter Resort - $ 20,000 


How can I get more information?
Kevin Waligorski Project Engineer
WSDOT North Central Region
P.O. Box 98
Wenatchee, WA 98807
Phone: (509) 667-2860 or toll free (888) 461-8816

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