May Creek Bridge closes from June 21 until August
June 15, 2010
By Warren Kagarise
The bridge near the intersection of Southeast May Valley Road and state Route 900 will close June 21 and remain closed for most of the summer, as workers dismantle the aging structure and build a replacement bridge.
King County plans a modern May Creek Bridge to replace the timber-supported, 60-year-old span across the north fork of May Creek. Crews posted signs near the bridge last week to alert drivers to the shutdown and construction. Detour signs will be posted for the duration of the closure.
The replacement bridge will be longer, with wider lanes and shoulders. Moreover, the $1.7 million project has been designed to bear heavier loads.
The narrow roadway on the existing bridge constricts traffic at the nearby intersection of state Route 900 and Southeast May Valley Road.
King County Road Services Division planners started readying for the project several years ago. The agency contacted the state Department of Transportation, emergency-service providers and the Issaquah School District to prepare.
Sara Niegowski, district spokeswoman, said the timing dovetails with summer break. The school year ends June 17 and starts Aug. 31.
The county chose a full shutdown because the option allowed for the fastest construction of the replacement. The contractor, Kirkland-based MidMountain Contractors, faces fines if construction has not been completed by the end of August, Road Services Division spokeswoman Linda Thielke said.
The transportation agency sent mailers to 8,000 nearby residents in early June as part of the preparations for the shutdown. The county also held a question-and-answer session about the project last June, but the open house attracted only six people.
The county transportation agency replaced another bridge south of Issaquah last year.
Crews kept a single lane open on Bandaret Bridge as crews dismantled the old bridge and constructed a replacement. The bridge carries Southeast May Valley Road across Issaquah Creek.
The project lasted from March to October last year. Workers finished the replacement bridge weeks ahead of schedule.
Warren Kagarise: 392-6434, ext. 234, or firstname.lastname@example.org. Comment at www.issaquahpress.com.