CHEHALIS – Drivers on Interstate 5 and Chamber Way will notice changes to their trips starting Wednesday, Aug. 28, as work to replace a damaged bridge girder gets underway.
During construction, drivers will encounter single-lane closures on I-5 and Chamber Way, Monday through Friday, between 7 p.m. and 7 a.m.
Drivers can also expect at least four full, overnight closures of northbound I-5 and the Chamber Way bridge. Interstate traffic will use the Chamber Way off- and on-ramps to continue flowing around the closure. The Washington State Department of Transportation will announce these full closures once they are scheduled.
Later this summer, contractor crews working on the Chamber Way bridge over I-5 will remove portions of sidewalk and narrow the roadway to two, 10-foot-wide lanes. Crews will use temporary concrete barrier to create a protected work zone on the south side of the bridge.
Pedestrians and trucks with wide loads will not be able to cross the bridge for roughly six weeks while the lanes are narrowed. Pedestrians must follow a signed detour (pdf 161 kb) using State Avenue, West Street and Louisiana Avenue. Trucks with wide loads can enter or exit I-5 using nearby interchanges, including State Route 6 (Main Street) and Mellen Street.
Over-height loads struck the Chamber Way overpass three times in the past year. Two of the strikes significantly damaged a girder at the southeast end of the bridge. WSDOT is replacing the girder to maintain the structure’s strength and keep traffic flowing on this important local connection.
Crews with contractor Olivas Valdez Inc. will demolish the existing structure over the damaged girder, repair the structure and set a new girder. Crews will then rebuild the bridge section and sidewalks above the new girder. Construction is expected to be complete this fall.
The project is estimated at $682,000, funded by the insurance company for the party responsible for damage.