Friday, July 5, 2019

Westbound US 2 between Snohomish and Everett closed Aug. 3-4

Update
July 16, 2019 at 9 a.m.
New closure hours: 7 p.m. Friday, Aug. 2 to 4 a.m. Monday, Aug. 5

Up to two more closures needed to complete critical preservation work

By Frances Fedoriska

We know, you've heard this before. But we'll keep talking about it until it's done. The westbound US 2 trestle has a weekend closure coming up.

The highway will close between State Route 9 and Interstate 5 from 7 p.m. Friday, Aug. 2 to 4 a.m. Monday, Aug. 5 for extensive paving and rehabilitation work on the Hewitt Avenue trestle. That's assuming we get good weather. During the closure, we need help preventing the extensive backups and delays on the SR 9 detour route when we had the last weekend closure in September 2018.
During the last US 2 Hewitt Avenue trestle closure in September 2018, a third of typical westbound
travelers adjusted their habits and delays still hovered around one hour.

Why weekend closures?
The asphalt on US 2 between Bickford Avenue and I-5 has outlived its anticipated 15-year lifespan. We are doing the work to ensure the highway is in a state of good repair, able to safely transport the people and goods who rely on this road. During weekend closures, crews:

  • Remove old asphalt
  • Inspect the trestle
  • Make any repairs
  • Put down a waterproof barrier to protect the trestle
  • Repave the road

This is just too much work in too small of a space to complete in an overnight closure.

Last year, we allowed our contractor up to six weekend closures to complete this project. Between major events, summer holidays and rain, they got in four closures before fall's cold, wet forecast postponed the project to this year.

But before they called it a season, on eastbound US 2 they were able to

  • Remove old, cracked, rutted and pothole-riddled asphalt
  • Repaved one mile from SR 204 to Bickford Avenue during overnight closures
  • Side note: the eastbound trestle is made of newer concrete, so no repaving happened

On the westbound trestle, they:

  • Repaved 2½ miles between Bickford Avenue and the Snohomish River
  • Repaired expansion joints, inspected and made any fixes to the Hewitt Avenue trestle between SR 204 and the Snohomish River. This work reduces the risk of future emergency repairs.

Now that the weather is warm and dry – we hope! – crews can finish rehabilitating the last half-mile of the westbound US 2 trestle between the Snohomish River and I-5 interchange.

The detours aren't big enough for all of us
On the average non-holiday summer weekend, 2,600 drivers take US 2 west between the SR 204 interchange and Everett every hour. Delays are usually minimal because the two-lane highway can handle the traffic.

The detour routes are on SR 9, a single-lane highway. On a normal day, that road is near capacity. SR 9 doesn't have the space to absorb displaced vehicles from US 2.

Thanks in advance
We know it's never a good time to shut down an entire direction of a major highway. During the disruption, keep in mind that doing this extensive preservation work now reduces the risk of costly emergency repairs that add time to already long commutes in Snohomish County.

How to get more information
  • Our website will have closure and lane reduction updates.
  • Get 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.