Expect delays – many, many delays
The three year $35 million project to expand the truck route to five lanes between Boblett Street and the border begins this May. Calling it a “congestion relief” project, Washington Department of Transportation (WSDOT) will host a public meeting on Thursday, May 4 at 6 p.m. at the senior center to explain the details.
Due to the construction, things will undoubtedly get worse before they get better, according to WSDOT’s Dustin Terpening. “Starting in June, WSDOT will close the truck storage lane, reducing the roadway to two lanes and making room for drilling equipment. Crews will spend most of 2006 drilling 1,400 shafts that will support retaining walls and the new D Street overpass,” said Terpening.
Project engineer Chris Damitio said that closing the truck lane was necessary because “there’s just not enough room for our equipment to drill the shafts otherwise. This is going to be really hard on traffic, and I ask that drivers use other border crossings whenever possible during construction.”
Construction SR 543 Timetable
May: Install construction signs and environmental prep work
June: Close northbound truck storage lane
June - December: Drill 1,400 shafts to support retaining walls and D Street Overpass
2007: Lower SR 543 by 25 feet and build D Street Overpass
2008: Pour concrete and lay asphalt for new truck and vehicle lanes