Over the last two and a half years, travelers along both directions of State Route 401 in Pacific County have been using a temporary single lane bypass road to travel through the area, but improvements are on the way.
On Tuesday, Sept. 5, Washington State Department of Transportation’s contractor, Rognlin’s Inc., will begin work to fully restore access along this stretch of roadway, also known as the Lewis and Clark Trail Highway.
They will also stabilize the adjacent slope, located about seven miles south of Naselle near milepost 5.
On Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2021, after several days of heavy rainfall caused roadway settlement and a debris slide, the highway was fully closed. In spring 2021, emergency contractors were able to reopen a single-lane bypass road, allowing travelers limited access through the area by alternating intermittently through a single lane with an automated traffic signal.
Once work zone staging is in place, contractor crews will fully close both directions of the highway for up to four weeks.
During the full closure, crews will remove and replace the existing failing drainage system, stabilize the adjacent slope and rebuild the roadway.
Travelers will follow a signed detour around the full closure using SR 4 and US 101.
“We understand this work is disruptive to the community, and we appreciate your patience while we make critical repairs to both the slope and roadway,” said WSDOT Project Engineer Pedro Reyes. “Every effort will be made to minimize delays and expedite the completion of this project.”
Once construction is complete, this project is intended to improve safety and reduce potential emergency road closures and delays caused by debris slides and roadway settlement.
Additionally, as part of this project, contractor crews will make improvements to the Knappton Boat Launch located off of SR 401 along the Columbia River near milepost 4. Improvements include re-grading the gravel boat launch site and parking area and replacing vandalized signs.
This $2 million project is scheduled for completion in spring 2024.