N.A. Degerstrom Inc., a Spokane-based contractor, is wrapping up the latest phase of work begun years ago to repair and reconstruct a long, winding stretch of the main road serving Mount Spokane State Park.
The $1.2 million project on Mount Spokane Park Drive began in July and is expected to be completed by the middle of this month.
Toni Droscher, communications manager with the Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission, says work on this phase includes demolition and full reconstruction of 2,000 feet of roadway located a third of a mile north of the park’s entrance. As part of the project, larger-capacity drainage structures along that stretch will be installed, Droscher says.
The project also includes more than three miles of hot mix asphalt overlay of the entire park roadway from the park entrance up to Linder Ridge, with repair of road settlement and frost heave areas.
Droscher says the current phase is the latest in a string of five projects spanning the past 16 years, which were staged as funding became available.
“They were prioritized based on repairing the worst sections of road first; those with steeper slopes, sharper turns, and most deterioration,” she says.
The first phase began in 2000 and included the repair of a slope failure that had reduced a portion of the road to one lane, as well as construction of a parking lot for the Mount Kit Carson Road trail. That $700,000 project was centered at the hairpin turn at Mount Kit Carson Road.
The second phase cost an estimated $1.4 million and included work from the end point of the first stage up to Vista Point. Work on that phase began in 2001, and was followed by multiple subprojects consisting of similar reconstruction work, including the current phase.
Droscher says the second series of projects consisted of revising horizontal and vertical alignments, and banking of the roadway along a portion of the road known as the horizontal curve. She says this should enable motorists to maneuver the curve at reasonable speeds, and improve conditions for winter driving.
Work also has included removing and reconstructing material along sections of the road that were previously swampy areas.
The entire drainage system for the roadway also was improved, and each new section was resurfaced.
Drosher says the park’s commission plans to seek funding in the state’s 2017-2019 biennium for one additional and final phase of work, which would continue roadway repairs past Linder Ridge.
According to the Mount Spokane State Park website, during the current phase, Mount Spokane Park Drive has been closed to public motor vehicles and nonmotorized vehicles, including foot or bicycle use while the road is undergoing reconstruction.
Hikers, bicyclists, and equestrians still have had access to trails, campgrounds, and restrooms during the construction, and parking for those uses is available in a designated area at Bear Creek Lodge, about a third of a mile outside the park entrance on Mount Spokane Park Drive.
Droscher says Mount Spokane Park Drive reopened Oct. 3 and will remain open. Summit Road, which connects to Mount Spokane Park Drive, closes Oct. 16 for the winter.
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