Expect delays on SR 14 near Bingen for slope stabilization work this summer

  • , ,

Celeste Dimichina, communications, 360-905-2057

BINGEN – People traveling through the Columbia River Gorge on State Route 14 this summer will want to plan extra travel time to their trips.

Beginning on Tuesday, July 13 the Washington State Department of Transportation’s contractor, James Dean Construction, Inc. will start work to stabilize the slope on the north side of SR 14 about 2 miles east of Bingen.

“During winter weather when there’s an increase in wind and rain, there’s an increase in rockfall activity, colliding with the roadway below,” said project engineer Mike Briggs. “In January 2007 we had a significant rockfall event and approximately 500 cubic yards of rock and debris fell onto the highway covering both lanes of SR 14. This project will improve safety for the traveling public by limiting these types of rockfall events and reduce potential emergency travel delays.”

Once construction begins, crews will remove trees and debris, perform rock scaling and build a catch basin within the ditch line. This catch basin will be lined with energy-absorbing materials to help contain rockfall that originates from this slope, reducing the amount of rock and debris that falls onto the roadway.

What can travelers except during construction

  • Travelers on both directions of SR 14 near Bingen should expect daytime, single- and double-lane closures for the duration of the project.
  • In August, travelers on both directions of SR 14 near Bingen should expect 45-minute-long daytime full roadway closures from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., for rock scaling work.
    • The 45-minute closures will begin at the start of each hour, with a 15-minute window to clear stacked up traffic on either side of the closure.
  • Use caution and lower speeds through the work zone.

This $1.6 million dollar project is scheduled for completion this fall.

Slow down on ice and snow.

It's easier to skid or lose control traveling at higher speeds. Give yourself more time to stop.

Carry chains, practice installing them.

Winter conditions could mean chains are required on your route. Practice putting them on your vehicle ahead of time.

Pack your winter car kit.

Carry extra supplies like warm clothing, ice scraper and brush, jumper cables and other emergency items.