Culvert replacement work on SR 504 near Toutle begins Tuesday, Jan. 15

Celeste Dimichina, WSDOT communications, 360-905-2057

TOUTLE – Work to replace a failing culvert under State Route 504, better known as Spirit Lake Memorial Highway, begins on Tuesday, Jan. 15.

On Sunday, Dec. 16, 2018, Washington State Department of Transportation maintenance crews began work to clear a plugged culvert near George Taylor Road. The crews successfully cleared the clog but discovered another issue. During a heavy seasonal rainstorm, the culvert and drainage system became overloaded, causing part of the culvert to collapse due to soil erosion under the highway.

Crews assessed the damage and determined that a single lane of the highway would remain closed until permanent repairs could be made.

The eastbound lane has been closed around-the-clock since Monday, Dec. 17, 2018, with traffic in both directions alternating through the westbound lane. Once crews begin work, the single-lane closure will remain in place.

  • Flaggers will alternate traffic during weekday, daytime hours.
  • A temporary traffic signal will direct traffic during the evenings and weekends.
  • Highway users should expect delays of up to 20 minutes when the flagger is in place.

“We realize it’s never ideal to close a lane of the highway, especially when there’s only two lanes for travel,” said Project Engineer Joanna Lowrey. “Safety is our number one priority, and the single-lane closure is the best way to continue ensuring everyone’s safety, until crews finish the culvert replacement.”

Replacing the culvert will also require a two full weekend closures of SR 504 in February, with a signed detour in place on either side of George Taylor Road. Prior to the two full weekend closures, dates and details and the detour map will be available on the project webpage.

The replacement work is tentatively scheduled for completion by the end of February.

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