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Cheney-Spokane-Highway 195 interchange project resumes

Work resumes today on an interchange at U.S. Highway 195 and Cheney-Spokane Road. The project should eliminate dangerous left turns and crossing maneuvers. (Colin Mulvany)
Work resumes today on an interchange at U.S. Highway 195 and Cheney-Spokane Road. The project should eliminate dangerous left turns and crossing maneuvers. (Colin Mulvany)

Work will resume today on the unfinished interchange at U.S. Highway 195 and Cheney-Spokane Road.

Selland Construction, of Wenatchee, suspended work late last fall when cold weather arrived.

Completion is anticipated by the end of June.

“It all depends on the weather and soil conditions,” said Al Gilson, spokesman for the state Department of Transportation.

“You can’t work in the mud, and you can’t pave in the rain.”

Cold weather had prevented resumption of the project until now.

When completed, the interchange will eliminate dangerous left turns and crossing traffic, reducing the number of serious accidents there.

Work this spring will concentrate on final paving of ramps and approaches along with earthwork for the partially completed southbound on-ramp from Cheney-Spokane Road to the four-lane highway.

In addition, guardrails need to be installed, lanes will need to be striped and a retaining wall erected.

Last year, the contractor completed work on the overhead bridge. Also, earthwork was finished on three of the four ramps. Some paving was done on the ramps.

Other work finished last year involved stormwater holding areas for drainage as well as environmental work for erosion control along Latah Creek. New plantings were installed to stabilize the creek bank adjacent to the interchange.

The $9.4 million project includes a $6.4 million construction contract.

The old intersection was the site of numerous serious accidents over the years, including the death of a 16-year-old girl in 2009, which led to a public outcry for the interchange.

The interchange fits into WSDOT’s long-range plans to add interchanges and access roads through Latah Valley from Interstate 90 to Hatch Road.

Highway 2 repaving begins in two weeks

A major repaving job on U.S. Highway 2 from I-90 westward to Espanola Road is set to start May 5.

Work on the project is going to be done during evening and nighttime hours from 7 p.m. to 6 a.m. to minimize traffic congestion.

Inland Asphalt Co., of Spokane, won a $5.1 million contract for the job over a distance of 12 miles, including the city of Airway Heights.

Warnings helped ease I-90 congestion

The old snow shed on I-90 east of Snoqualmie Pass, which protected westbound lanes from avalanches, was ripped out in less than 48 hours, WSDOT reported last week.

That section of I-90 remains limited to one lane in each direction through Friday.

Officials said drivers apparently took warnings about congestion during peak travel hours and timed trips around potential delays, which had the effect of minimizing delays during the single-lane restrictions.

The state is in the middle of a multiyear project to widen I-90 to six lanes in the vicinity of Keechelus Lake.

Elsewhere on I-90, minor delays are possible this week at the Oakes Avenue interchange near Cle Elum and the Thorp Road interchange west of Ellensburg due to shoulder and ramp work.

Also, the Indian John Rest Area will close at 6 a.m. today through 7 p.m. Thursday.

Bits and pieces

• Lower water levels on Lake Roosevelt may require moving the Keller Ferry’s north shore terminal to its low-water location. If that occurs, ferry service will be delayed several hours for the relocation procedure. For ferry status information, call (888) 808-7977.

• Bridge cleaning on state Highway 25 over the Spokane River north of Davenport is underway. When workers are on the bridge on weekdays, traffic will be limited to an alternating single lane, which should result in short delays.

• Spokane County parks officials last week said they will apply for state grants to improve access to the Antoine Peak and Mica Peak conservation areas. They are seeking a $100,000 grant for building a trailhead on the west side of Antoine Peak near Brevier and Robbins roads. At Mica Peak, the county is seeking funds to plan for public access there. Other landowners in the vicinity are interested in working with the county to limit motorized access there.

• Traffic on Francis Avenue from Division to Crestline streets is reduced to one lane in each direction during reconstruction of the arterial. Work on an Avista natural gas line reportedly caused some delays last week. The $3.1 million project is among the last to be done under a 2004 voter-approved street bond. Also, drivers at Regal Street and Palouse Highway are encountering detours and restrictions for installation of a traffic signal and other street improvements needed to accommodate a new Target store.

• In Spokane Valley, traffic congestion and delays are possible on Sprague Avenue from Vista to Park roads where a repaving project started on April 14.