Dual road projects snarl East Sunset Way

August 17, 2010

Flaggers help drivers navigate the East Sunset Way construction site as state crews widen the temporary, two-lane approach to the Interstate 90 interchange. By Greg Farrar

Drivers must steer through a construction gauntlet along East Sunset Way during the weeks ahead, as separate projects add space to the cramped street.

Construction crews in safety orange and heavy equipment line the road from Interstate 90 to Second Avenue to complete state and Issaquah School District plans.

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Press Editorial

August 17, 2010

Look beyond Issaquah for traffic solutions

Issaquah has waited a long time for definitive transportation improvements. At last, a few are coming.

In the past decade, Issaquah got an Intelligent Transportation System that allowed traffic lights to be synchronized and reader boards to advise drivers of traffic revisions. Two years ago, the great debate over whether to build a southeast connector road from Interstate 90’s Exit 18 at East Sunset Way to Issaquah-Hobart Road Southeast was decided.

This summer, two big changes born of that decision will provide real improvements.

Sunset Way at Second Avenue will be widened to allow for a turn lane. Second Avenue Southeast will also get a right-hand turn lane onto Sunset. The changes should significantly improve traffic flow through the intersection, especially in the afternoon, when schools release students for the day. Read more

Work starts on East Sunset Way interchange next month

May 25, 2010

State Department of Transportation officials last month awarded a $1.3 million contract to a Bellevue contractor to widen and upgrade the cramped East Sunset Way approach to Interstate 90.

Construction on the project should start next month and wrap by fall. Crews will widen the narrow roadway from a single lane in each direction and remove concrete barriers alongside the lanes. The temporary support wall near the roadway will be replaced. Workers will also reconfigure storm water retention ponds down the hill from the roadway.

DOT officials picked Tri-State Construction to complete the long-planned project. The department budgeted $3.5 million for the project, but bids arrived far below estimates.

Most of the work will take place off of the roadway, but the project could require up to 60 nighttime lane closures.

Crews completed most of the interchange in 2003, but left the East Sunset Way stretch undone in order to connect to the planned Southeast Bypass. City Council members canceled the proposed 1.1-mile roadway across Tiger Mountain in 2008, after 12 years of planning and $4 million.

Work starts on East Sunset Way interchange next month

May 17, 2010

NEW — 6 a.m. May 17, 2010

State Department of Transportation officials last month awarded a $1.3 million contract to a Bellevue contractor to widen and upgrade the cramped East Sunset Way approach to Interstate 90.

Construction on the project should start next month and wrap by the fall. Crews will widen the narrow roadway from a single lane in each direction and remove concrete barriers alongside the lanes.

Read more

DOT will open East Sunset Way construction bids

April 6, 2010

State Department of Transportation officials will open construction bids for the East Sunset Way interchange April 7.

Workers will widen the narrow, curved roadway from a single lane in each direction bracketed by concrete barriers to wider lanes bracketed by road shoulders, curbs and a sidewalk. Crews will also replace a temporary support wall with a permanent support for the widened roadway. The project will also require workers to reconfigure storm water retention ponds adjacent to the site.

Officials plan to start construction on the estimated $3.5 million project next month. Work should last about six months. Although most work will take place off the roadway, the project will require up to 60 nighttime closures, when a single lane will remain open and flag crews will direct traffic.

The state started advertising the project to contractors March 8.

Crews completed most of the interchange in 2003. Workers left the East Sunset Way piece unfinished in order to link the junction to the planned Southeast Bypass.

City Council members canceled the proposed 1.1-mile roadway across Tiger Mountain in 2008, after 12 years of planning and $4 million.

The interchange work completed in 2003 — billed by the DOT as a $117 million congestion-relief project — created additional access to Issaquah and the Sammamish Plateau.

DOT will open East Sunset Way bids

April 3, 2010

NEW — 6 a.m. April 3, 2010

State Department of Transportation officials will open construction bids for the East Sunset Way interchange April 7.

Workers will widen the narrow, curved roadway from a single lane in each direction lined by concrete barriers to wider lanes bracketed by road shoulders, curbs and a sidewalk. Crews will also replace a temporary support wall with a permanent support for the widened roadway.

The project will also require workers to reconfigure storm water retention ponds adjacent to the site.

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Businesses benefit from break in city impact fees

March 30, 2010

A city program to make Issaquah more appealing to businesses has aided the developers of Overlake Center, a Northwest Maple Street medical building, offices along East Sunset Way and more than a dozen construction and remodeling projects citywide. Read more

Potential downtown tenants get break on fees

February 23, 2010

City Council members last week extended a break on city fees to merchants who open businesses in downtown Issaquah. Read more

Sunset Way interchange completion to begin construction in late spring

January 12, 2010

The narrow, temporary East Sunset Way approach to Interstate 90 will be completed this year with wider lanes, road shoulders, curbs and a sidewalk. By Greg Farrar

The narrow, temporary East Sunset Way approach to Interstate 90 will be completed this year with wider lanes, road shoulders, curbs and a sidewalk. By Greg Farrar

Expect construction noise and lane closures when state crews begin work to widen the East Sunset Way approach to Interstate 90 in late spring.

State Department of Transportation plans call for construction on the $3.5 million project to start in May and last about six months. Although most work will take place off the roadway, the project will require up to 60 nighttime closures, when a single lane will remain open and flag crews will direct traffic.

Workers will widen the narrow, curved roadway from a single lane in each direction hemmed by concrete barriers to wider lanes bracketed by road shoulders, curbs and a sidewalk.

“When you have two buses or two trucks try to go through here at the same time, it’s impossible. One of them has to wait,” Project Engineer Hung Huynh said.

Crews will also replace a temporary support wall with a permanent support for the widened roadway. The project will also require workers to reconfigure storm water retention ponds adjacent to the site.

Huynh said the DOT plans to advertise the project to contractors next month. Officials tapped into state gas tax revenue to pay for the project. Read more

Former Councilman David Kappler lauded for environmental record

January 5, 2010

Issaquah claimed about 8,000 residents when David Kappler launched a successful City Council campaign in 1991.

David Kappler

David Kappler

Then, before the seismic shifts brought on by widespread growth, residents talked about still-unrealized plans to build urban villages on Cougar Mountain and Grand Ridge. Costco still maintained corporate headquarters in Kirkland.

Kappler, a tireless advocate for trails and open space preservation, won every election since his ’91 victory. The former councilman, who shaped decisions for almost 20 years, led the push to conserve land and cast crucial votes to shape transportation and public safety in Issaquah and across the Eastside.

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