Thursday, May 11, 2023

Course correction on two central Washington roundabout projects

By Lauren Loebsack

Travelers familiar with State Route 28 may have noticed that over the weekend we had to remove some recently placed concrete at the White Trail Road roundabout near Quincy. 

Removal of the center island concrete on SR 28 and White Trail Road

We're removing the concrete because we discovered an issue with the location of construction. As it was initially built, the north-south line of the intersection with White Trail Road was too far to the west.

After discovering this inconsistency at SR 28, the contractor requested that we inspect the US 2/97 and Easy Street roundabout project to determine if a similar misalignment had also occurred at that location. We unfortunately confirmed a similar issue occurred there. 

We're still working out how this happened, and we will share more as we get to the bottom of this.

Our big question was whether we could design an engineered solution that would allow us to adjust the rest of construction to what had already been built. In both locations, we determined that the misalignment is too great for this kind of small adjustment. It creates enough offset that continuing with the current alignment would require several months of additional engineering and right-of-way work. For the sake of completing the project in the shortest possible time for the needed results, we decided to remove what won’t work and rebuild the roundabout to the proper alignment.

On the SR 28 and White Trail Road project, we need to replace the roundabout center island and curbing, some drainage fixtures, and conduits for lights. On the US 2/97 and Easy Street project, we fortunately caught this issue before concrete was placed. Here, the contractor will need to remove and rebuild drainage structures and regrade the earthwork in preparation for placing concrete.

Regrading on US 2/97 and Easy Street intersection project

It’s always frustrating for all parties involved to discover an issue on a project. No one wants to remove freshly placed concrete. We decided on this approach because it will finish the project closest to the original timeline.

What this means for the schedule is still tough to tell. Rescheduling materials delivery and subcontractors takes time, but our contractor has already brought in additional resources to expedite the work. We will continue to keep you informed on how we're working together to deliver these projects to our community in as timely a manner as possible.