SR 522 repaving to last through summer

WSDOT tackling four miles between Monroe, Maltby

Kelly Sullivan

The Washington State Department of Transportation will pave four miles of State Route 522 between Monroe and Maltby this summer.

The section of road starts east of State Route 9 and ends near the Fales and Echo Lake roads interchange. Crews will also repave the eastbound lane of the Snohomish River Bridge, which will require major closures.

S.R. 522 drivers commuting at night will be detoured 24 miles down State Route 9 during that period. The work will last through two weekends, currently scheduled for late July and early August.

“It has been a while since we last repaved this highway,” WSDOT Project Engineer Dave Lindberg said in a news release. “This area has seen a lot of growth over the years, and it’s important we preserve this highway to support the increase in commuters and travelers.”

Daily traffic has increased by about 1,000 cars annually over the past two years, according to WSDOT. About 34,000 vehicles drive that route daily.

Work began last week, and crews will be out during non-peak hours. Single-lane closures will last from 7 p.m. to 5 a.m. Sunday through Thursday.

Some of the $5 million project cost is coming from the 2015 Connecting Washington funding package, “a $16 billion investment that enhances the statewide transportation system and maintains critical infrastructure,” according to WSDOT.

Its various phases will take 16 years to complete; it started in July 2016. A gas tax was raised by 11.9 cents to fund the program.

Federal and other state dollars are being used to pay for the four-mile paving project outside Monroe.

Companies were asked to bid on the construction contract in February. Lakeside Industries Inc., which is headquartered in Issaquah and has a Monroe office, was awarded the work in March.

The section was last paved about 17 years ago, according to WSDOT. Asphalt typically lasts for 15 years. The surface along the roadway has developed ruts and cracks that can cause potholes.

“Repaving the road will improve the driving surface for travelers and reduce the chances of costly emergency repairs,” according to WSDOT.

While the crews are working on the eastbound Snohomish River Bridge lane, drivers will have to take a lengthy detour, which will go through Snohomish, Monroe and Maltby, along State Route 9 and U.S. Highway 2. The bridge will be passable during the day, but down to one lane.

The stretch is notorious for rush-hour bottlenecks. State and local officials, such as Monroe Mayor Geoffrey Thomas and former Sen. Kirk Pearson, as well as surrounding communities, have been pushing to widen the road from one to two lanes for years.

“The congestion frequently spills over onto side streets and drivers try to find ways around the bottlenecks on the highway,” according to WSDOT.

A few other big projects are scheduled in the area.

The U.S. 2 westbound trestle and both directions of the roadway between State Route 204 to Bickford Avenue in Snohomish will be repaved this summer.

Work is tentatively scheduled for 7 p.m. Friday to 4 a.m. Monday for six weekends — weather permitting — and was postponed last week. Crews should be finished by this fall.


Use the comment form below to begin a discussion about this content.

Sign in to comment