Short-term road closures OK’d for U.S. 101 widening
By Rob Ollikainen
Peninsula Daily News
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The temporary closures along a 3.5-mile stretch between Kitchen-Dick and Shore roads will take place next summer in sequential order as the state widens the highway to four lanes.
A 32-foot median will separate two lanes of east- and westbound traffic and reduce the potential for head-on wrecks, state officials have said.
The three county commissioners Tuesday unanimously approved the temporary closures of Shore, North Barr, Sherburne, Dryke, Kitchen-Dick and Kirk roads at their intersections with the highway.
“We don’t expect all these closures to happen simultaneously,” Commissioner Jim McEntire said.
“They will be closely following one another in some kind of a sequence so that the contractor can mobilize once and knock all these intersections out. Then that’s done and over with.”
The state Department of Transportation has not selected the contractor.
The contractor’s schedule will determine the exact dates of the closures, project manager Steve Fuchs told commissioners during an Aug. 20 briefing.
The longest of the closures will be a maximum two-week shutdown of Sherburne Road to allow crews to raise the level of the county road by 8 feet to align it with the new highway grade.
Closures of up to six days are planned for Dryke and Kitchen-Dick roads.
Shore Road will be shut down at the highway intersection for up to three days.
One-day closures were authorized for North Barr and Kirk roads.
“The actual dates, as we get closer to the projects, will be well-publicized,” Commissioner Mike Chapman said.
County roads with no alternate exits, such as South Barr and Pierson roads, will not be closed.
Fuchs last month said crews will begin constructing a new bridge over McDonald Creek this winter.
Switch both directions
Once the new bridge is finished, the state will switch both directions of highway traffic onto the new bridge, demolish the existing bridge and build a second bridge for the new highway.
The two-year project is scheduled to be completed in October 2014, Fuchs said.
Once completed, left turns onto the highway from county roads will no longer be permitted.
Motorists will be required to turn right and use one of six dedicated U-turns to achieve their intended direction.
In a related project, commissioners Tuesday approved a prospectus and local agency agreement with Transportation for a 130-foot pedestrian underpass for Clallam Transit passengers to cross the widened highway at the East Owl Creek bus stop near Kitchen-Dick Road.
Federal transportation funds will account for $415,200 of the $480,000 project.
The remaining $64,800 will come from the Clallam Transit surface transportation program.
“We, the county, are simply the agent here,” McEntire said.
Reporter Rob Ollikainen can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 5072, or at email@example.com.
Last modified: September 04. 2012 5:37PM