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Highway 530 reopens 2-way traffic after landslide tragedy
OSO – Drivers will now have an easier time crossing the section of State Route 530 damaged by landslide as the road has been reopened to two-way traffic.
Crews have spent the past week patching, repaving and restriping damaged sections of Highway 530. Since late May, traffic had been operating on a one-way basis, with a pilot car alternating directions of travel based on demand.
“This temporary roadway will help to strengthen connections between Arlington, Oso and Darrington, as well as the rest of our state, just in time for summer visits to local events,” said Washington State Department of Transportation Regional Administrator Lorena Eng.
The speed limit will remain 25 mph to protect the safety of construction workers. There are no restrictions for height and size of vehicles, but oversized loads will need a permit. For safety reasons, stopping or pulling over along this stretch of highway is not allowed.
Periodically during construction, drivers can expect to see flaggers on the temporary roadway to ensure safe movement of construction equipment and vehicles.
Crews will work throughout the summer to build a permanent new section of Highway 530 south of the temporarily repaired roadway.Emergency relief funds from the Federal Highway Administration will cover the $28.1 million cost.
The landslide changed the geography of the valley floor and the Stillaguamish River North Fork, increasing the chance of flooding. As a result, the roadway must be rebuilt and elevated. This work is expected to begin by early July, starting on the east side of the slide area and moving west. Substantial completion of the new alignment is expected in early October.
On several occasions, traffic will need to return to the Seattle City Light access road during construction. These detours, which may last up to 31 hours, will be scheduled during the week as often as possible to minimize impacts.