LAKE STEVENS — The fifth time just might be a charm.
Weekend repaving planned for the westbound lanes of the Hewitt Avenue trestle on U.S. 2 between Lake Stevens and Everett was supposed to begin two months ago.
It hasn’t happened.
Rainy weather canceled four weekends that had been set aside for the work.
With a sunny forecast and temperatures expected to reach the mid-80s, it appears that work will finally get under way beginning at 7 p.m. Friday and continuing until 4 a.m. Monday. It’s the first of six weekend closures needed to complete the job.
“It’s full-steam ahead,” said Ally Barrera, a spokeswoman for the state Department of Transportation.
People have braced for it before, only to have last-minute cancellations.
Transportation officials are warning that the work could create significant delays as drivers take detours and find alternative routes. What they don’t know is how much it could gum up the works.
“We do know it will be tough on people in Snohomish County,” Barrera said.
It also could be gnarly down south for folks driving into King County this weekend.
The second of two weekend closures of northbound I-5 at the West Seattle Bridge is set for Saturday and Sunday.
Lanes will be closed at 8 p.m. Friday. Crews plan to replace expansion joints and repave the roadway.
The closure means heavy traffic will be diverted onto other highways and roads around the region. Long backups are expected on northbound I-405.
Back on the trestle in Snohomish County, dry conditions are critical as crews use a waterproof material below the asphalt. If it gets wet before or during application, the material won’t adhere properly.
When work does start, the westbound trestle will be closed, with a one-lane detour on 20th Street below the bridge. Later closures will involve longer one-lane detours on Highway 9. Drivers are urged to stay home, plan for delays or find alternate routes.
“The 20th Street SE detour will be an option this weekend,” Barrera said. “However, since it’s a single-lane road, it is not going to have the same capacity as a two-lane highway like U.S. 2. So if people do choose to use 20th as a detour, they need to prepare for extra congestion and longer travel times.”
Closing the route is the biggest piece of an $11.6 million project that includes completed work on sections east of the trestle, up to Bickford Avenue.
An inspector for the work estimates about 15 percent of the project is complete.
Even if the weather is sunny for the next six weeks, there will be some breaks from the construction work during Aquafest in Lake Stevens the weekend of July 27 to 29, for the Evergreen State Fair in Monroe in late August and for Labor Day the first weekend in September. For now, the last closure is scheduled for the weekend of Sept. 7.
Eric Stevick: 425-339-3446; firstname.lastname@example.org.