I-205 Ramp Meter and SR 503 Variable Message Sign - Complete June 2019

Project news

  • This project was awarded on July 31, 2018 to Northeast Electric, LLC
  • Both ramp meters are scheduled to go live on Monday, June 3, 2019. 

Project overview:
In fall 2018, Washington Department of Transportation contractor, Northeast Electric, LLC. will install ramp meters at the two connecting on-ramps to northbound I-205 from westbound SR 500 and Northeast Fourth Plain Boulevard. This will be the second ramp metered in the metro area, on the Washington side of the river, with the first being the on-ramp to southbound I-5 from SR 14/Washington Street.

In addition to installing ramp meters, this project will also install a variable messaging sign on southbound SR 503, between at Northeast 95th Street and Northeast 87th Street. This sign will provide important information for travelers who are traveling through the corridor.

Needs & benefits

Why is WSDOT installing ramp meters along I-205:
Ramp metering is a cost-effective proven strategy used in urban areas around the nation to improve traffic flow and safety. A recent study showed that a majority of ramps in Vancouver would benefit from ramp meters.  

How do I use them? 
Drive your vehicle up to the white line, or stop bar, to trigger the ramp meter. If the light is red, stop at the white line. When the light turns green, merge onto the freeway.

The end result:
A ramp meter system that operates dynamically under specific traffic conditions to control the flow of traffic onto northbound I-205.

Ramp meters are a cost effective way to improve traffic flow by controlling the number of cars entering onto the highway. By controlling the number of vehicles entering onto the highway, it improves travel time reliability and reduces crashes related to congestion and merging. Additionally, because ramp meters can improve the efficiency of the highway system it delays the need for a more costly freeway-widening project. 

The variable message sign will be used to display important travel information such as incidents and travel times.


  • Summer 2018: Project awarded to Northeast Electric LLC, July 31, 2018
  • Late fall 2018: Construction scheduled to begin
  • Late spring 2019: Construction scheduled for completion


The cost of this project is approximately $540,000 
PIN #400019R


Devin Reck - Project Engineer

Celeste Dimichina - WSDOT Communications