BINGEN – People traveling through the scenic Columbia River Gorge on State Route 14 will want to plan extra time into their trips.
Starting Monday, Feb. 14, travelers in both directions of SR 14 near Bingen can expect multiple, 45-minute-long roadway closures weekdays during daytime hours for slope stabilization repairs.
Washington State Department of Transportation’s contractor, Strider Construction, Inc. needs daytime hours for rock scaling and slope stabilization work in two locations on the north side of SR 14 just west of the Chamberlain Lake Rest Area.
What can travelers expect
- 45-minute full roadway closures Mondays through Thursdays from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. during the first few weeks of the project. 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.
- Single- and double-lane closures with delays of 20 minutes will be in place on Fridays from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.
The 45-minute full closures will end approximately 4 to 6 weeks into the project. After that, weekday, single- and double-lane closures with 20-minute delays will be in place during the hours listed above for the duration of the project. Drivers are encouraged to use caution and lower speeds through the work zone.
“For several years, both locations have seen frequent rockfall events that dropped large rocks and boulders onto the roadway, covering a portion of the highway and the ditch line,” said Project Engineer Mike Briggs. “We understand that travel delays due to construction can be frustrating, however, the work to stabilize the slope is important for the safety of the traveling public by limiting these types of rockfall events and related emergency travel delays.”
Crews will remove debris and trees, scale rock and install dowels into the hillside to secure the face of the rock slopes. Work includes constructing a rockfall catchment ditch consisting of a wider and deeper ditch line, protected by concrete barrier. This rockfall catchment ditch will help contain rockfall that originates from this slope, reducing the amount of rock and debris that falls onto the roadway.
This $3 million dollar project is scheduled for completion this summer.