New roundabout coming to SR 503 in northern Clark County this summer

Construction on the $2.3 million safety improvement project begins in mid-July

BATTLE GROUND – Travelers who use State Route 503 near Rock Creek Road just north of Battle Ground will soon experience a safer roadway that keeps people moving.

On July 18, the Washington State Department of Transportation contractor Tapani Inc. will begin construction of a compact roundabout, also known as a mini roundabout, within the SR 503 and Northeast Rock Creek Road intersection.

After a thorough review of five years of traffic data that showed collisions that produced a fatality, severe injuries and several cases of property damage, this location on SR 503 was identified for improvement using funding specifically targeted for reducing and preventing serious injury and fatal crashes.

Why roundabouts?

  • Safety: Roundabouts reduce injury crashes by 75%. Because of their circular shape, they’re designed to control the direction of traffic and reduce travel speeds to between 15-20 mph. Roundabouts also prevent T-bone and head-on collisions, the most severe crash types.
  • Improved traffic flow: Roundabouts keep traffic moving in one direction, minimizing stop-and-go situations and improving travel time.
  • Accessibility: Roundabouts are designed for all vehicle types, including emergency vehicles, RVs, buses, farm equipment, trucks with trailers and semi-trucks. The new compact roundabout on SR 503 at Rock Creek Road ensures all vehicles can move safely and efficiently through the area.
  • Driving tips: Always yield to vehicles already in the roundabout, and don’t stop while in the roundabout. More information on how to drive a roundabout is available on the WSDOT YouTube page.

What to expect during construction

  • Intermittent single-lane closures of SR 503 at Rock Creek Road.
  • Alternating one-way traffic and delays of up to 20 minutes through the construction area when flaggers are present.
  • Travelers should use caution and reduce speeds through the work zone until the project is complete this fall.

Beginning in 2021, WSDOT collected feedback from many nearby stakeholders including freight companies, fire districts, property owners and Cowlitz County and Clark County emergency managers and first responders to ensure the roundabout design would accommodate all vehicles that travel through the intersection. Based on the freight vehicles using the intersection, the new roundabout design will include truck-friendly elements like:

  • A mountable, flat central island
  • Extra low curbing height
  • Removable signing

Those who use SR 503 can sign up to receive email updates and text alerts about this project, or stay up to date by downloading the WSDOT mobile app.

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