Commuters on southbound State Route 503 in Vancouver experienced a nice change of pace this morning when they encountered a brand-new right turn lane to westbound Fourth Plain Road.
Thanks to good weather and resourceful planning, Kerr Contractor crews working for the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) opened the turn lane ahead of schedule Thursday, Sept. 22. WSDOT originally expected to open the lane late this year or early next year.
The new lane provides a dedicated right turn for southbound SR 503 drivers headed west on Fourth Plain, a move that is expected to reduce congestion and improve safety on southbound SR 503. The highway just north of this intersection sees an average of 50 collisions each year.
Crews also installed median curbing on SR 503 between Fourth Plain and Northeast 65th Street. The curbing is designed to help prevent as many as 40 collisions caused every year by vehicles turning across multiple lanes of traffic between the two closely spaced intersections.
Drivers can expect a few more weekday single-lane closures this fall as crews install new street lights and finish painting the median curb. The project is expected to be complete by the end of the year.
The $763,000 SR 503 – Fourth Plain/SR 500 Intersection project is funded through the 2005 gas tax package. Learn more HERE.