Friday, June 29, 2018

Fish passage project requires 13-day closure of State Route 92

Wednesday, July 25, 2018 at 10:55 a.m.

SR 92 is reopened to traffic following extended closure at N. Machias Road.
Lake Stevens drivers will be detoured around closure at North Machias Road July 6 - 19

By Frances Fedoriska

Just like they needed a bigger boat to bring about the end to “Jaws,” we need to carve out a bigger Little Pilchuck Creek. While we’re at it, we also need to build a bigger span over the creek, running just under SR 92 in the Lake Stevens area.
The 12-foot box culvert over Little Pilchuck Creek under SR  92 is funneling the water too quickly, making it virtually impassable for migrating fish.
As it is, the 12-foot box culvert funnels water too quickly, making it very difficult for migrating trout and salmon to traverse. So we’re building a bigger fish passage. Redirecting Little Pilchuck Creek and widening its path will slow down the speed of the water. This makes it easier for migratory fish to swim through and spawn. The project also restores the creek to its natural state, helps us comply with a U.S. District court ruling regarding historical tribal fishing rights, and expands fish access to almost 30 miles of habitat.

A 13-day closure

After Fourth of July festivities are wrapped up, our contractor crews from Graham Contracting will need to close the intersection of SR 92 and North Machias Road for 13 consecutive days, from 8 p.m. Friday, July 6 through Thursday afternoon on July 19.

During the closure, we will redirect Little Pilchuck Creek to its natural creek bed, demolish and block the old box culvert under SR 92, assemble the 20-plus pieces that will become the new 60-foot buried bridge, bury it, then pave a new roadway on top.


There will be two detours, one for cars, small trucks and bicyclists, and another for large commercial trucks. Both will be signed during this upcoming closure. Please be prepared to add some extra time to your trips while the detours are in place.

What was accomplished during the first two weekend closures?

The back-to-back closures of SR 92 at North Machias earlier this month allowed our crews to pump “jet grout” into the hillsides along Little Pilchuck Creek. When this environmentally-safe grout mixed deep in the soil, it hardened, creating a stronger foundation to support the weight of the new 60-foot bridge. That bridge is what we now need to install as part of the 13-day closure.

During two weekend closures in June, contractor crews assemble a custom-made 30-foot
 trestle used to do some stabilizing work on the hillsides of SR 92 and North Machias Road.
What we need from drivers

Be prepared for the drive between Lake Stevens and Granite Falls to take longer than usual.

  • Our website will have closure updates.
  • Sign up for weekly email updates on Snohomish County projects.
  • Our Twitter account will have info about traffic.
  • Download our mobile app for traffic maps and other news and updates.

Thanks in advance

We know there’s no good time to close a highway, and we thank you in advance for any adjustments you make to help us complete this important environmental project on SR 92.